What are the top health and wellness tips for the modern-day nurse?
Nurses are the backbone of healthcare. They are the primary point of care for your stay at any healthcare institution. Their work saves lives, improves outlook, and is instrumental in offsetting the physician shortage. The role, however, is far from easy. It can be incredibly challenging due to a host of reasons, from an aging population to the nursing shortage.
Healthcare workers, and in particular nurses, were one of the professions hit hardest by the coronavirus pandemic. With rising rates of stress, anxiety, and burnout amongst nurses, there has never been a more important time to focus on you.
Your health and wellbeing are critical. Not only do you deserve to lead a healthy, fulfilling life, but you also owe it to your patients to give it your best. If you aren’t healthy, you simply cannot be your best.
There are several ways that you can improve your health and wellbeing. Not every tip will be a good fit for you, which is why it is important to diversify your efforts and adjust your strategy to build a healthy living and working approach that fits you.
Look at Your Career
One of the first areas you will want to look at when it comes to improving your health and wellbeing is your career itself. While this tip will often take the longest amount of time to see to fruition, it should also be one of the first.
At the end of the day, if it is your situation that is causing you undue stress, then healthy living and the right routine will only act as a stopgap. You need to enjoy your work, you need to be in a situation that provides you with the right work/life balance, and you need to feel like you have reached your goals.
If you feel like your job doesn’t offer this level of satisfaction, it is important to sit down and map out your options.
There are many excellent ways you can take your nursing career or nursing credentials forward. One of the best and most straightforward ways is to advance. If you are an RN, then choosing a specialization and working towards your APRN license could be just what you need.
Though there are many different APRN roles that you can work towards, a good place to start when mapping out your career is to understand how you want to work. You can move forward working behind the scenes or directly with patients. If you want to work with patients, which patients do you want to work with? Do you want to specialize in pediatrics, women’s health, or family health? Alternatively, what area of medicine do you want to focus on?
Explore the available roles and their responsibilities, and then map out and get started with making progress towards that goal. If you want to become a family nurse practitioner, for example, explore the available degrees in your state. If you are a nurse within the eNLC, however, know that you can often choose a top program from dozens of states. You could, for example, apply and enroll in this online nurse practitioner program in Texas if you are based in Michigan.
Look at Your Diet
Your diet plays a massive part in your health, your ability to work and learn, and your mental health. By improving your diet and boosting your hydration, you can give yourself what you need to actually thrive in a day.
Don’t worry about calories, as these are a secondary consideration. Instead, look at the foods that give you the most in terms of nutrients and vitamins. Hydrating properly will then help deposit the vitamins and nutrients throughout your body and also works to increase oxygen in your body.
Look at Your Routine
Your routine is where the magic happens. Healthy living can only be accomplished when you do it consistently. This means eating healthy regularly, hydrating often, sleeping on a schedule, and committing to your goals on a consistent basis.
You do not need to keep your body in motion in order to get the most benefits out of your day. In fact, breaks are essential for productivity and positivity. A good way to juggle working with a degree, especially as a nurse, is to break up your commitments into manageable bites.
In the morning before work, for example, you could listen to a lecture. You could even do this on your way to work. After work, you can spend another hour on your degree, take a break for dinner, and spend time with your family or friends, and then afterward spend another hour creating or revising your notes.
Breaking it up doesn’t just make it easier to handle; it gives your brain time to actually think about what you have learned and absorb it.
Building a routine like this can help take away the effort and strain of additional work, further helping you achieve your goals.
When to Get Additional Help
The help you receive can be professional mental health aid all the way to a delivery service that ensures you always have fresh fruit and vegetables in your home. What works for you will depend on your needs, your routine, and your budget.
For many, simply having a list of go-to services can provide a safety net they didn’t know they needed. If you are experiencing a highly stressful period, then knowing you can get a healthy meal planned or delivered or laundry services from your door can make everything less stressful.
Of course, the type of help that many find hardest to get is mental health services. The good news is that there are many new companies and options out there, thanks to the increase in remote and digital services. Making that first step to get help can be daunting, but you just need to keep in mind that your mental health is just as important as your physical health, and sometimes your mind needs professional support too.