Nursing is one of the most important professions in the world. With the long hours, hectic pace, and often life-or-death nature of the work, it’s also one of the most stressful. Nurses regularly perform, and perform well, under extreme stress. But they’re also human, and every person can get burned out once their stress level reaches its upper limits.

The COVID-19 pandemic created an environment for healthcare workers that had not been seen in generations. Hospital ICUs reached capacity, and many didn’t have sufficient equipment, such as ventilators, to treat patients. Coping with patient deaths has always been part of the job for nurses, but COVID-19 had many nurses witness death in numbers unprecedented outside of wartime. The pandemic made it exceptionally clear that finding ways to reduce stress and burnout is critical for nurses. Regardless of what health issues nurses contend with, there are some techniques that can be helpful to any nurse at any time.

Suggested Ways to Reduce Stress

If you’re a nurse who’s concerned about burnout, do yourself a favor and follow these tips to minimize your stress:

  • Realize that you’re entitled to your stress. You will feel it. That doesn’t mean that you’re a weak or poor nurse but simply that you’re human. Don’t feel guilty for acknowledging that you might be getting overwhelmed.
  • Avoid unnecessary information that can add to your stress. The media and its running death toll during the COVID-19 pandemic, for example, provided information that some people wanted to know, but this information doesn’t necessarily help you do your job or stay centered. Limit your exposure to social media and television unless necessary.
  • Take a break when you’re able to, however brief. Every little bit helps. And don’t feel guilty about doing so.
  • Don’t be afraid to seek expert help. Mental health professionals are trained to give you techniques that can help you navigate tough times. Make yourself aware of any such services your employer offers. Many medical facilities also have members of the clergy available to address the spiritual needs of patients and their families.
  • Reach out to your personal support network. If you have family members or friends you can depend on when life gets rough, a quick call or text can provide the morale boost you need.
  • Stretch and relax. You may not always have the space, privacy, or the quiet that you’d prefer, but even if you get to step outside for a few moments, stretch, do some yoga, or meditate when taking a break. You can also lower your overall stress level by incorporating these practices into your off hours.

When you get stressed on the job, allow yourself some relief. With all you do as a nurse, you deserve it! As you progress in your nursing career, gaining new skills and credentials such as an RN to BSN, you’re likely to take on additional professional duties. Stress management will remain crucial to your own physical and mental health, no matter the stage of your career.

One CCNE-Accredited Program, Two Career-Enhancing Credentials

Make your nursing career even more rewarding as you prepare for greater responsibilities with an online RN to BS in Nursing (Bachelor of Science in Nursing) from The University of Texas Permian Basin. Our CCNE-accredited degree program helps you prepare to move into leadership positions with greater decision-making responsibilities through courses such as Leadership Immersion & Capstone. Most courses last just eight weeks and will help you develop a deeper grasp of evidence-based, patient-centered care and master the unique challenges of caring for a multicultural patient base. In as little as one year, you can finish your RN to BS in Nursing and also receive a Nurse Manager Certificate from Sigma Theta Tau, an international nursing honor society.

Expert Faculty

When you earn your RN to BS in Nursing online from UT Permian Basin, you’ll learn from the same acclaimed faculty who teach on campus. Our RN to BS in Nursing is led by master’s- or doctorally prepared nurses, some of whom have been working in the nursing field for decades. Who better to guide you than the people who’ve been where you are now and have gone on to become nursing leaders? Their real-world experience informs our robust RN to BS in Nursing curriculum.

Online Convenience

We know how busy life can be for a nurse. (Remember, we’re nurses, too!) Completing a BSN program shouldn’t complicate it even more. We’ve designed our online RN to BS in Nursing program with your work and family responsibilities in mind. Our asynchronous, 100% online format enables you to complete your coursework from any location with internet access, at any hour of the day. With the flexibility to set your own schedule, you don’t have to choose between earning a respected BSN degree or giving your ongoing commitments the attention they deserve.

Flexible Clinical Requirements

Every leader has a mentor. An essential part of our online RN to BS in Nursing program is guidance from a preceptor. Working closely with this individual, you’ll discover how to translate the nursing concepts you’ve learned into practice in various working environments during two required clinical courses. You may choose your own preceptor, provided that they have already completed a BSN and are currently working in a nursing leadership position. Like all other program courses, your clinical courses do not require you to visit campus.

Make an even more significant impact as a nurse. Apply to UT Permian Basin’s online RN to BS in Nursing program to get started!

Sources:
https://rcni.com/nursing-standard/features/howcovid-19-affecting-nurses-mental-health-and-what-to-do-about-it-159456
https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/12/09/us/covid-hospitals-icu-capacity.html
https://www.apna.org/m/pages.cfm?pageID=6685
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7663126/