Sometimes in the pursuit of a career as a Travel Nurse, there is the tendency to ignore one’s well-being as you move from opportunity to opportunity.
Have you bitten off more than you could chew? Taken on more than you could handle? Are you functioning on overload? Do the days seem to run together and become blurred memories? If you can say yes to any of these questions, then beware. Your batteries are drained. You’re running on empty.
There are very few people who haven’t felt overwhelmed, overworked or simply overloaded between jobs. Especially when the nursing assignments have a frantic pace and it continues for long periods of time, we become stressed and max out. That’s natural, but it also means trouble. You may not realize it consciously, because it’s become a way of life; but it’s a way of life that’s destructive, and insidious, effecting not only us and our families, but our travel nursing businesses as well.
The most natural response to increased stress and pressures is to take a deep breath and try to push through. But after a while that fails to relieve the situation and in fact is only makes matters worse. Fatigued, both emotionally and physically, we start making mistakes. To make matters worse, we get cranky and those closest to us start feeling the brunt of it, oftentimes long before we do – or at least before we’re ready to acknowledge it. That includes, not only our families, but our employees, and our customers.
If you find that putting in long hours has becomes a way of life it’s time to step back and re-evaluate. If you pride yourself on never bringing work home, but think about it all the time to the detriment of both yourself and your family, stop kidding yourself.
Consider stepping back and regain your energies, your perspective and your mind! Set boundaries and aim your focus in the direction of achieving those things that are most important. That means aligning yourself to do the things you can sustain.
To do that, you need the proper mindset: you need to understand that not being able to do it all is not a failure on your part. In fact, it’s a strength.
To succeed demands that you take care of yourself, physically and emotionally. Allow time to relax, whether you take a walk around the facility, do things that renew your soul (like meditation or listening to music). Smile often. You’ll be amazed at the results.
How can you be implement this?
- Look first with your long range perspective, rather than the short range daily duties and responsibilities.
- Don’t be afraid to question what you are doing. Ask yourself if it’s valid in relation to your goals and readjust priorities accordingly as a health care worker.
- Yes, there are ongoing tasks, responsibilities and deadlines to be met, but what needs to be done today and what can go on the back burner?
- Create a new plan based on the new criteria you’ve just established.
- Establish priorities.
- Don’t be afraid to say no, if you believe saying yes will be more harmful than helpful
- Don’t be afraid to say yes, if warranted. Be open. The next travel nursing assignment may provide additional perspective, insight, and may also be very rewarding