The truth is, I created Nursing Kaurner over a year and a half ago because I learned early on in my nursing career that caring for others starts by caring for yourself first. Hence the tagline “Putting yourself first to elevate others”
Fast forward to being in the midst of wave number four of the pandemic. This statement has more significance and weight to me now than it has ever.
Nurses and healthcare providers as a whole are placed under high amounts of stress which may affect mental, emotional, and physical health. This leads us to elicit burnout symptoms.
The first step for me was to have this honest conversation with myself. I am a perfectionist and always strive to be at my 101% fully fuelled self. I learned quickly that this is not always attainable and it is okay to not be feeling 101%; this took some time to accept. The truth is we are not invincible, we are human. To feel “off” or not your best self is okay, but it starts with that initial self-check within.
I am going, to be honest, I should have done this self-check more often and frequently because at times it feels like we are on autopilot going 1000 miles/hr until we get that genuine question of “how is work going for you, are you okay?” Until we assess our emotions and how we are coping, how will we know how we are truly feeling? Take 5 minutes out of your day to reflect upon your emotional well-being and day.
Once establishing and accepting where we are at, now how do we make this U-turn to feel recharged again? What recharges you?
Often if you are experiencing intense emotions related to work, you aren’t the only one experiencing it. Nothing is more reassuring than knowing that you are not alone. We are all in the same boat, placed under similar circumstances. We are stronger when we overcome barriers together. Sometimes we do not realize this until we touch base with other colleagues and other healthcare providers.
I encourage you to start these conversations and check in with your colleagues if you haven’t already. Not only will you feel reassured and supported, but this also allows you to become much closer and stronger as a team. Work culture has an immense impact on mental and emotional health as well as job satisfaction.
Speak to your management team. As we talked about earlier, you are most likely not the only individual experiencing burnout out in your workplace. Management is there to support you and this is a two-way relationship. If you do not voice your concerns, how can you expect change to occur? Voicing your honest concerns will only be of your benefit, not only will they have an understanding, but now they can better support you and or give you further guidance. How do you know all of your options if you do not ask about them?
Take a step back to recharge your battery and ask yourself what that means to you?
You are never alone and you are needed