How to Support, Help, and Enrich the Life of Professional Nurses

@CareOS Themis Mirror

Whether you yourself are working in one of the numerous different sectors under the umbrella of nursing as a registered nurse, or else your partner, close friend, or other family member is the one who has chosen such a selfless career, it’s true to say that the profession is indeed a challenging one.

The vocation of nursing seemingly becomes more and more difficult each and every year, and with nursing constantly changing and practices, policies, and procedures always updating, a working nurse can never set on their laurels.

So, with that being said, if you are a nurse or a loved one is a nurse, continue reading to learn how to better your professional working life – here are some valuable tips to make the life of a nurse easier and fuller.


Time-Off Is Valuable and Should Be Treasured

Unlike other, more routine job roles, such as people who work in an office or at a bank, for example, it is usually possible and normal for each member of the team to be able to take at least a half-hour break for lunch every working day.

However, as a nurse, as with the plethora of other medical professionals, especially those working on the ‘front line,’ it is incredibly common to have to miss lunch entirely, and often nurses go for long hours with no nourishment or even a quick break.

This is why, as a nurse, you should always try and make your day off count as much as you can, and if you are so exhausted you need to catch up on your sleep, at least endeavor to cook yourself a healthy meal and pamper yourself with a hot bubble bath before you go to bed.

If, instead, you are living with a nurse, when they do have a day away from the hospital, give them the time, space, and peace and quiet they need to recharge their battery. You could even treat them to a surprise meal that you have cooked yourself, or else take them out for an early evening meal.

Other key ways to spend a day off, or even an afternoon, could include a picnic in the park, settling down with a good book, visiting the movie theater or live theater, or taking yourself off for a day of shopping and pampering.

@BOCCO emo

Nurses Need to Talk

As with plenty of other professional careers and vocational roles, it can be incredibly easy to bottle up emotions experienced at work and try not to bring such emotions home.

However, as important as maintaining a healthy work-to-life balance is, if you are married to or are close to a working nurse, you should always provide a safe and relaxed space for them to discuss what is happening at work if they want to.

Conversely, if it seems as if your loved one is going through a hard time at work, there is no benefit to pressing the matter if they do not feel comfortable opening up at that time.

Generally, nurses do tend to discuss their feelings sparingly, and it is a sense of perspective together with a skill of detachment that allows them to carry on working in their role. If your loved one is someone who does seem to want to talk about what is happening, talking therapy is one of the most important ways of alleviating emotional stress and so should be encouraged.

There are a wide plethora of practical benefits to talking therapy, especially for nurses, including:

  • A space to talk to someone entirely disconnected from the situation
  • A way to calm feelings of stress and anxiety
  • A way to enrich the brain and make space for new, more positive thoughts
  • A way to be validated by having feelings and emotions acknowledged
  • A way to see the proverbial bigger picture
  • A way to separate the situation from over-analysis in the mind
  • A way to objectively reflect on events

Over the last few years, with things unlikely to change anytime soon, nurses are facing more emotional trials and tribulations than ever before. Not only that, but as the field of medicine and healthcare is constantly advancing, there is always new things to learn as well.

Themed Afternoon Tea @Four Seasons Hotel Beijing

Nurses Deserve Treats and Gifts!

Just like any professional in any vocational career or more regular job role, new equipment or a fancy new gadget to help them at work is always an extremely appreciated gift.

Regardless of whether or not your nursing loved one has a birthday coming up or not, treat them to a hamper full of useful and practical gifts for nurses, which they can utilize at work every day.

If you are a nurse yourself, your kind and empathic nature will undoubtedly lend itself to buying gifts for and treating your loved ones, so for once, have a look online for something you would really like and buy it for yourself.

Alternatively, you could even take yourself away for a night at a spa weekend on your next two days off in a row, or else go camping in solitude at the beach for some sun, sand, and self-care time.

If your nursing loved one is currently working long and arduous shifts, you could surprise them by leaving a fresh and healthy packed lunch and even a bunch of flowers and leave their surprise treats at reception for when they get a chance to look.

@The Spa at Four Seasons Resort Scottsdale at Troon-North

Strive to Improve Physical Health and Fitness Levels

As previously discussed, for nurses, especially those working directly on the ward within a large and hectic hospital setting, it can be hard to balance professional responsibilities with taking care of themselves and their bodies.

If you are already working in the field of nursing, you will no doubt be able to identify with this point entirely, and even if you are committed and dedicated to embarking upon a healthier lifestyle, your work may well stop you from doing so.

However, there are a number of ways in which a busy working nurse can easily take some simple steps towards looking after their physical fitness as well as their emotional health and wellbeing:

1. Stay hydrated throughout the day regardless of how busy your shift becomes
2. Choose healthy snacks that you can grab when you can, such as protein bars, nuts, and low-fat yogurts
3. Bulk cook and portion salads and other meals on your day off for the following week
4. Try to avoid drinking too many coffees in one day
5. Avoid binging on takeout food when you finish your shift
6. Limit the number of snacks you buy from vending machines

A thoughtful and practical gift for the nurse in your life could well be something related to healthy eating and meals on the go, such as a slow cooker for their kitchen, a mixer to make healthy and vitamin-rich smoothies, or even a cookbook for people with a hectic workload.

Additionally, on days off, even if it is just for a half an hour walk around the block, spending some time outside is extremely important, especially if nurses will be enclosed indoors with no fresh air or natural influences for the vast majority of the time.

@Robear robot by Riken Japan

Tips for Student Nurses

If you are currently studying for your degree in nursing or nursing science and you are either about to commence your first placement in a hospital or medical institution or working there now, being thrown into such an environment can be intimidating, to say the least.

With this in mind, here are some key tips for student nurses and some effective techniques to cope with the onslaught of your new working atmosphere and environment:

  • Build rapport and a strong working relationship with your personal tutor
  • Engage and be mentally present in each and every situation
  • Never be afraid to ask questions
  • Strive to get to know and form bonds with your fellow student nurses
  • Remember that nurses never stop learning
  • Always strive to be the best that you can be
  • Utilize academic support available to you
  • Work on your time management and organizational skills.

@Graf Von Faber Castell Guilloche Yozakura

Think About the Words You Use

One of the most common comments and responses when a professional nurse tells a stranger what they do in their profession is that they ‘could never possibly do that job themselves.’
As well-meaning and respectful the intent undoubtedly is in such a response, a far more supportive retort would be something along the lines of ‘thank you for doing a job that I could never, ever do myself.’

Furthermore, if your loved one is someone who is currently working in a highly stressful ward or other location and is experiencing considerable emotional stress and turmoil, instead of feeling uncomfortable when they open up, consider how they must feel dealing with such tragedy.

Putting yourself in their shoes will help you understand how they are feeling and will also show them that you are there, you care, and you are listening to their struggles. Even if you don’t necessarily know how to help them feel better, merely listening can do wonders for their mental health.