7 Tips for Nurses to Reduce Stress

Published by Sofia Blanzaco
Reading Time: 3 minutes

According to the American Institute of Stress, 83% of workers in the United States struggle with job-related stress and the healthcare environment is not the exception: Many workloads, staff shortages, handling patient lives (and moods) can be overwhelming. But the great news is that there are many nurse stress management techniques you may use to reduce stress and burnout. Learning to do this is crucial to stay focused, feel healthy, and have plenty of energy! Let’s see 7 Tips for Nurses to Reduce Stress.

1) Talk about it 

Verbalizing your stress and problems is always a good idea for mental health. Talking with positive-minded people will help to put your problems in perspective and get solutions. Focus on what you have accomplished and the positive things of your life, not on what you have not been able to do.

When difficult situations overwhelm you, sharing your concerns with the environment is an excellent strategy to reduce stress. Therefore, it is essential to maintain good relationships with the team and coworkers. A healthy communication environment is a significant influence to stay balanced. Family and friends are also unconditional support when it comes to listening to problems.

2) Keep work and personal time separate 

Nursing can make you care about your patients even when your shift is over. But, there is nothing you can do to help your patients when you are at home. So, leave your work-related worries at work. Trust your fellow nurses. They will do your job. 

3) Get adequate sleep 

Well-rested nurses may see improvements in their concentration and cognition. In addition, if working night shifts, a nap can help increase the ability to tolerate frustration. Sleeping produces a refreshing and efficient effect on your entire body, so please consider sleeping in case you are in the middle of a state of stress, since it will help you release anxiety, think better, and restart.

“Stress naps” are also related to the body’s need to replenish glucose that reaches high levels under a stressful situation. Sleeping helps to restore the metabolic aspects of the body.

4) Exercise 

When you are over-scheduled and your workday is exhausting, it’s challenging to find time for exercise. However, physical activity has been directly linked to lower stress rates.  

Have you ever heard that doing physical exercise helps reduce stress and anxiety that occurs throughout the day? When you do physical activity, your body releases endorphins that act as a natural painkiller for your nervous system. 

Unmanaged stress can lead to a build-up of frustration. If you exercise, your body will learn to release that tension.

5) Stay hydrated 

Staying hydrated is vital for stress reduction. 

With dehydration, the circulation of stress hormones, cortisol, increases, and physiological processes are set in motion similar to when the body is in a situation of danger or restlessness.

6) Let go of things you can’t (or shouldn’t) control 

Nurses often care deeply about patients but try to avoid carrying the burdens of everyone else. Remember that unfortunately, you directly impact yourself if you get used to doing this in respect to too many patients and coworkers.

7) Pick a hobby that makes you relax 

Practicing yoga, crafting, baking or reading can help calm your mind after a stressful day at work. Give yourself time each day to do your hobby. It will help you feel refreshed and see challenges from a new perspective.

Nursing is a stressful career: 

  • Patients and cases that nurses are involved in; 
  • Constraints to get work done; 
  • Conflict of leadership and conflict with coworkers. 

Taking care of yourself and reducing your stress is vital.  

However, sometimes it’s not about how to handle stress but about the environment where you work. Nurses in high-risk roles, for example, may experience burnout or need a change. Transferring to a new work environment may be the right thing to do to reduce stress.  

Do you need to change your focus? Then, find the nursing programs to boost the career that’s right for you. Nexus University offers nursing degree programs that build off your previously earned degrees and prepare you to become a leader and shape important changes in healthcare.

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