Travel nursing can be a wonderful and rewarding experience, but it can also be stressful and demanding. If you do not make enough time during your assignment to care for your well-being, it can start to affect your physical, mental, and emotional health.
Here are a few tips to keep in mind as you prepare for your seasonal assignment on how to stay healthy during the winter season.
Get enough sleep
Getting used to a new schedule doesn’t come easy, and it might take a little while for you to get into a routine. However, a study published in Journals of Gerontology: Series B, found that:
“Young adults who went to work and ate dinner around the same time every day typically slept better and woke up fewer times during the night. They also fell asleep more quickly at bedtime.”
Which means, coming up with a relaxing bedtime routine, be it eating dinner, taking a shower, and then reading a book before bed can help you get to bed easier. It might be difficult to have a strict routine, but starting to set time aside for relaxing activities before bed can help you fall asleep quicker and stay asleep.
Choose healthy foods, even on the go
With your busy schedule and hours, you might be more prone to grabbing foods on the go, or foods that do not take a lot of time to prepare. While fast foods might be cheaper and easier to get your hands on, they are not necessarily good for your body and can leave you feeling sluggish.
For a boost energy reach for almonds and green tea, and for healthy and balanced meals, make sure to include fresh fruits, vegetables, and lean meats.
Make time for exercise and stress reduction
Going for a run can not only help keep your waist trim but also help with stress reduction. Going for a run during your time off can help you feel calmer and more centered during your travel nursing seasonal assignment.
Yoga has also been shown to help aid in a stress reduction and in mood boosting. A study published in the journal Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport found:
“Participants in yoga were significantly less anxious, tense, depressed, angry, fatigued, and confused after class than before.”
Any kind of exercise you enjoy can help keep your heart healthy, boost your immune system, and keep you feeling happier. If you enjoy swimming, then make some time for that activity.
If you are not too interested in sports, make time for painting, reading, or something as simple as watching your favorite show or listening to a podcast. While being a nurse is incredibly rewarding, we must also remember to set aside some time for what brings us joy.