Working as a travel nurse can be exciting and rewarding both professionally and personally.
It can also be very tough on you emotionally and physically. After all, you’ll be traveling (driving, flying, etc.) every few weeks, packing and unpacking, learning new “how things are done” at different assignments throughout the year, and will be far from your loved ones and friends (unless you take your family with you; which has its own challenges).
Read below for some tips on how to avoid burnout as a traveling nurse.
One thing you should consider is to take at least one month off between assignments. You needn’t do this between every assignment, but you should consider doing so after two or more back to back.
If you don’t want to take a month off, take at least two weeks. Relax. Have dinner with friends and family. Go to the movies. Get a massage. Read books. Take long walks. In other words, do whatever you need to do to really recharge your body and mind. You’ll be amazed how much this will help you stay alert and happy on your next assignment.
If possible, see if you can go home for a long weekend at least once during an assignment. This will help you reconnect with family and friends, and also allow you to relax in familiar surroundings.
Traveling is great, but experts on travel (even of the vacation kind) say that it can be quite stressful. You have to make new decisions every day (Which bus will get me to work on time? Where can I find a good dry cleaner?). While this can be fun, it also takes up a lot more energy than your day-to-day life does back home. That’s why making sure you get enough sleep, exercise and relaxation is critical to your physical and mental health.
If possible, take some classes in your assignment city. Take an art class or a dance class. Learn how to tap dance or perform improvisational comedy. Do something that takes you completely away from work.
Make sure you invite new co-workers out for dinner or a movie. Aim to make at least one relatively deep or close connection at each assignment. This will help keep you from feeling increasingly isolated and lonely, sure steps to burn out.
Learn stress management techniques such as yoga or meditation. They can help you stay calm and keep your stress manageable.
Exercise! Get out there and walk at least 30 minutes each day. If the weather’s cold outside, see if you can find a treadmill at your apartment complex or at a nearby gym.
If you’re an experienced travel nurse, what do you do to help you stay fresh while keeping burnout at bay?
If you’re an experienced nurse who is looking for a positive change, consider a career as a traveling nurse. MedPro Healthcare Staffing can place you in assignments in hospitals and medical facilities in cities all across the country. Send us your resume/CV today.