When shifts feel long and days drag on, you know it is time for a little pick-me-up. Keep on keeping on with CIA Medical’s list of 25 ways (and counting) to stay motivated as a nurse, compiled by nurses for nurses. Keep spirits high and days rolling on. If you are a nurse with special ways to keep motivated and would like to keep the list going, email us with your expert advice at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Caffeine! With late night hours, everyone’s favorite roasted beverage will trick your body into thinking the sun is up - just like you!
- Team members. Try your best to surround yourself with positive and uplifting members that are truly on your team.
- Find strength in your desire to help people. You are the voice for the patient when he or she cannot speak for themselves.
- The end is in sight. When shifts drag on and you begin to wonder if you will ever leave, keep in mind that shifts come to an end. You do have another life!
- Nutrients! Just because you are taking care of others, do not forget to take care of yourself. Treat your body right with nutrients by eating well and it will return the favor, making your day better and brighter.
- Kind words. Keep the kind words from patients and loved ones close to your heart.
- Money! It’s not the reason you got into it, but don’t forget that money is a perk that no one can deny. Payday is right around the corner!
- Cool Scrubs. Like clothing that fell from heaven: scrubs. What better dress code than one that gives you and your body all the space, comfort, and freedom you need?
- Connect! Do not forget to connect with your patients. Although they come to you for help, they each have much to offer too. Small talk doesn’t have to be a drag.
- Treat yourself! Don’t let days off become dead space and time until your next shift. Remember to treat yourself. You deserve it!
- Learn. Everyday is a new chance to do and learn something new. Keep your head up by challenging yourself. What new lessons will this day bring?
- Accomplish something. Make lists to stay focused. When you accomplish something, find pleasure in crossing it off. It’s the little victories.
- Stay current. Keep updated on current events. Keep in mind there is a world outside of your work place full of news, life, drama, and love -- a world you are a part of!
- Comfy Shoes Let’s face it, you are not on a runway. Invest in some comfortable shoes that will make you want to run jump and skip. Besides, you never know when you might have to!
- Keep a Journal Keep a journal to note all the interesting, scary, worrisome, happy moments in your day. Later, read it back to see all the progress you have made. They grow up so fast.
- Prep yourself. Having the right tools at you or near you at all times will help you feel in control and confident to face your shift.
- Stay organized. Know where all the information, material, and products are located in any case scenario. In moments of panic, find peace in your own personal order.
- Purpose. Remember why you are a nurse. Whether you are supporting your family, working your way up to becoming a leading nurse, or just working for the patients, remember your purpose every day.
- The human body is fascinating! A miracle within itself, when malfunctions occur, you are the one in charge with the know-how.
- Take little breaks throughout the day. Read a book, watch a television show, or take a little nap. It will help with the longer stretches and keep your mind focused when you need it most.
- Find what gets you in the zone. Maybe it is a song, a phrase, or a thought that you can resonate with that will make you feeling strong and in charge.
- Find inspiration. Put up some inspirational quotes from figures you look up to in the areas you find yourself most often.
- Recognize that you work hard! Appreciate your intelligence, strength, and determination. This work is not easy. Feel free to rant a little too!
- Stay Positive. Don’t let negative thoughts keep you down! Do your best to stay positive. Toxic thoughts do nothing to help you complete your goals.
- Set goals. Finally, set goals for yourself and don’t settle on just one! Set a goal for the year, the month, the week, and the day. They will keep you going and growing.
- Find someone or something that inspires you! ! Is there a role model in your life? Someone you can look up to or consult to lead the way when you are faced with uncertainty? A support or an inspiration is a great way to keep your head up.
One of the best things about nursing is the potential for more career options. If you feel like you need a change from traditional bedside nursing, there are plenty of nontraditional career options available.
Tina M. Michaud-Gray, RN, LMT, SILC,CH,IPRS is a skilled health care professional with over twenty years of clinical experience in complementary and alternative medicine (CAM). As a trailblazer in pain relief and recovery from injuries and surgery, she is the founder of the New England Rapid Recovery Center, Dover, NH, and developer of a unique combination of healing technologies, the non-invasive, state-of-the-art Rapid Recovery system.