It’s no surprise that nurses experience more than a typical level of workplace stress. Meeting increasing demands of a medical unit and caring for patients with different medical conditions can be both emotionally and physically draining! You can help prevent workplace stress by identifying your main stressors so they do not have a negative effect on your performance. Take a look below at these three common stressors and how you can reduce their impact.
Physical Demands of the Job
Nursing is a very physically demanding job which includes frequent lifting, bending, changing shifts, loud work environments and long hours. In addition, nurses are inevitably exposed to many illnesses and infections, which increases their risk of getting sick. The type of physical demands and risks associated with this type of work environment may cause you to feel as though you lack control at your own job. You can help yourself counteract physical burnout by eating a healthy diet, regularly exercising and getting enough rest.
Nurses wear many hats at work – working directly with co-workers, managers and of course, patients and their families. With so many interpersonal relationships in play, it’s easy for nurses to experience many emotions as stressful situations arise. Whether it’s dealing with a dying patient or communicating with an agitated co-worker, it’s important you know how to channel their emotions so you do not lose your mental focus and productivity. If you find yourself experiencing many emotional challenges, consider learning relaxation techniques to decompress, such as deep breathing and meditation.
Lack of Confidence
With so many changes constantly occurring in the healthcare industry, it can be hard for even the most experienced nurses to keep up with best practices, procedures and protocols. Feeling lost or uneducated about current trends in the nursing industry can leave you feeling less confident in your abilities - which can cause you stress on the job. Alleviate this stressor by regularly engaging in professional development, such as webinars or industry events. When you make a commitment to continual learning and development, you’ll gain more confidence and feel empowered to reach your highest potential.
Stress will always arise at work, especially in healthcare settings, but how you learn to manage your stress can make all the difference. Taking steps to reduce the stressors above will help you improve your job performance, as well as your job satisfaction!
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