June 19, 2010

Doctor’s Orders

Posted in Nursing Career tagged , , , , at 2:33 am by Nursing Tales Team

It doesn’t matter what type of nurse you are, stress goes along with the job.  This is a part of life that finds new nurses fresh on the job; seasoned nurses who seem to have weathered multiple storms pertaining to their job; even nurses who always carry themselves with a bright smile.

To be the best nurse you can be, you’ve got to learn to follow Doctor’s orders and find creative and effective ways to deal with the stress you are sure to encounter on the job.  If you do not take the necessary time to unwind and release tension, you set yourself up for problems not only professionally but also personally.  Stress leads to numerous physical and psychological problems if not dealt with properly.  Your patients need you without ceasing; so there is no time for you to fall victim to depression, poor concentration, or pain.  This is just the start of what stress does to the body and mind.

Weight gain is one of the most common side effects of stress; but doesn’t necessarily interfere with you getting your job done.  However, when stress threatens your immune system, your heart, and threatens you with increased risk of cancer and cardiovascular disease, you can quickly see how important it is to find ways to distress.

Getting rid of stress from your job does not have to include expensive trips to the day spa or vacations to a remote island.  No, you can put a little peace into each and every day, sometimes without spending a dime to do it.

One great way to rid yourself of the burdens of your day is to revert back to your childish ways.  This doesn’t mean that you draw on the walls or run through the halls.  But find things that made you happy as a child.  You could color in a coloring book or play Lego’s with your own children.  You could ride your bike on the beach or build sandcastles.   It doesn’t matter the actual activity that you engage in; what matters is that you get the good feelings that enveloped you as a child, before life was full of responsibilities and stress.

Even better than acting childish….act childish with your best friend!  “Laughter is the best medicine” is not a cliché; it is absolute truth!  Find time to laugh every single day and you will notice stress melting away with every giggle or guffaw.

It may seem impossible; but it is important that you learn to leave work at work.  Here’s why…another important factor in relieving stress is that of sleep.  When you bring work home with you (whether actual paperwork or just mental stress), you are mentally bogged down in the one place where you should be able to unwind.  Leave your troubles behind at the end of the day and retreat to your comfortable room for some rest and relaxation.  Proper sleep can help you rejuvenate both physically and mentally.  You may even find that, after a good night sleep, you can see things more clearly and your perceived stress disappears.

There is no way to completely eliminate stress from your job and your life.  It’s all part of the territory, no matter what job title you hold.  But as a nurse, it is especially important to keep track of stress before it runs away like a steaming freight train.  Your patients, co-workers and your mind and body will thank you!

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