Four useful stress management tips for new nurses

Joining the healthcare sector may be the best career move you make for yourself. Not only do you get to secure good money, but you can also use your skills and knowledge to be an asset to the community and look after the booming population. However, before you reach this point, you still have a long way to go. Starting your job as a new nurse can require specific preparation. The fast-paced environment can be incredibly hectic, especially when you’re not used to working under stress. 

Therefore it’s not uncommon to feel overwhelmed, anxious and panicky right after you kick-start your career. But it doesn’t have to be this way. You can easily manage your stress and focus on your job by following several valuable tips and tricks. Hence to make nursing less stressful for you, here’s what you need to do: 

1. Look Towards Online Degrees

As a nurse, you may worry about advancing your career as you work. Whether you are new to the sector or have been around for a while, it’s natural to seek higher positions and attain more liberty to test your skills and knowledge. But once you start working full-time, you can’t return to school. This is where online degrees come into the picture. Virtual classes are far more flexible and easier to balance than a traditional school. This can help you strike the perfect study-work balance without the need to give up opportunities. 

So if you’re looking for ways to enhance your skills from where you stand, look into online nursing programs and enroll in the right ones without qualms. In an incredibly self-paced manner, you’ll get to study the latest skills, knowledge, and clinical concepts in your field to help you flourish. It’s never too early to look into ways through which you can support your career, and one of the most innovative ways to prosper in your field is through education.

2. Design A Routine For Yourself

When you get your schedule, it’s best to devise a routine that allows you to show up at work while also addressing your needs. If you rush to get to your shift without addressing your needs, such as having a healthy breakfast, you eventually feel stressed out. As a result, you’ll feel burnt out and tired early in your career. A routine helps you manage your time wisely while giving you the space to practice self-care adequately. 

An ideal schedule should allow you ample time to exercise, meditate and comfortably have your meals. It should also help you list all the tasks you need to do at work so you can get over the maximum number of cases per day without needing to re-schedule. However, finding the perfect routine takes time, and you’ll need to try different timetables until you can come up with one that is both realistic and comfortable to practice. 

3. Have A Support System 

Nursing can take a toll on you. Even if you’re new on the job, the healthcare sector expects you to carry out all your duties perfectly. As a result, you may need to put in extra effort and work through the weekend to keep up with your patients. Similarly, depending on where you work in the hospital, you may be exposed to numerous cases that can be profoundly upsetting and traumatizing. These unsettling cases can leave you disturbed, which can interrupt your focus and cause you to become anxious at work. Therefore whether you’re battling fatigue or trying to deal with what you witness at work, you need help. 

Don’t hesitate to reach out to therapists and counselors to help you sort out your mental baggage making it easier for you to cope with your work. Therapists and counselors can also help you draw boundaries, talk to your nurse manager, and help you develop coping mechanisms that let you take a breather when stressed. Having a support system also includes your loved ones at home. 

When you’re exhausted from work, you need a comfortable home environment to return to. So talk to your loved ones, convey your needs, and allow them to help you. This will help you fight your stress more healthily than bottling up your emotions and dealing with your problems alone.

4. Understand Your Limitations 

As a nurse, you need to make peace with the fact that you can’t save all your patients, nor can you improve their condition immediately. This doesn’t mean you’re a failure as a medical expert. However, you cannot control the patient’s experience when getting treated. Numerous patients may take too long to recover, some might be too sensitive to pain, and others may not cooperate with you. In all these cases, you shouldn’t blame yourself for not making your patient more comfortable. 

This only makes you more stressed and upset while working. Therefore, ensure you do what you can when looking after your patients. This includes informing them about potential side effects and offering multiple treatment options. It also includes ensuring that a misdiagnosis, lack of facilities, and abrasive behavior are not the source of their discomfort. Beyond these factors, you cannot do much and learn to cut some slack when despite your efforts, a patient is still not happy.

Final Thoughts

Being a new nurse in the field can be an exciting and equally stressful moment for you. As much as you want your career to flourish linearly, this is not always possible in a fast-paced environment like hospitals. Nursing is hard work. You have too much to do in a day which can take a toll on you. Therefore to counter the fatigue you face without jeopardizing your career, don’t feel pressured to go back to traditional schooling; opt for online platforms instead. You should develop a routine for yourself that allows you to manage your work and have time to take care of your health. 

Anytime you feel exhausted doing your job, look into a mental health professional to guide you out of this dilemma. Furthermore, learn to draw boundaries and understand that you can’t control every factor regarding a patient’s welfare. So do what you can and pull back from aspects you cannot fix.

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