6 New Year’s Resolutions for Nurses

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At this time of year, many people decide to make some important changes in their lives. Big or small, these changes can mark a big difference in their future, and although you can decide to change your life at any time you feel is right, the new year seems like an ideal time to do it – there is something about the idea of a brand-new year starting that gives your new plans a bit more emphasis and importance. 

When you’re a nurse, there will, perhaps, be some specific life changes you want to make. After studying online nursing programs and with some nursing experience to look back on, these changes may be about your lifestyle or the way you work. However, even if you have not got much nursing experience, which does not mean you cannot make some changes in your life that will benefit you in your work and personal situation. Read on to find out just what kind of new year’s resolutions a nurse might make, and why they would be useful ones to consider for yourself. 

Become A Nurse 

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Although we have talked about these new year’s resolutions being for nurses, there is one important thing to say; some nurses haven’t become nurses yet. What does this mean? It means that the people who have always felt they want to be a nurse, perhaps have had a calling in that kind of career direction, but have yet to take the next step and sign up for online nursing programs and study actually to become a qualified nurse should do just that. 

If you’re not happy in your current career, or even if you enjoy what you’re doing, but you know that there is something out there that would suit you better, the new year could be the perfect time to explore your options. Online nursing programs are open to a wide range of people, and since you don’t have to travel to a physical college to attend classes at specific times, you can study to become a nurse around your full-time job if that is what makes sense for you. 

You can also study at your own pace, so even if becoming a nurse through online nursing programs will take a little time, you know that you will reach your goal in the end, and you can be a nurse once you have grained your nursing qualifications. 

Whatever speed you work at and however you choose to learn, now is the ideal time to think carefully about what you want to do with your life and become the nurse you’ve always wanted to be. More nurses are always required, so it should not be a problem to get a job in the hospital, clinic, or other medical settings that you want, so why not research online nursing programs, and make next year the year you do something for yourself (that will, of course, benefit many others)? 

Get Fit

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A new year’s resolution that many people want to try is to get fitter. If you have gone through online nursing programs and are now working as a nurse, you will know just how to fit a nurse has to be. There is a lot of moving, lifting, walking, and other physical work that has to be carried out. Not only that, but your brain needs to be in top condition too, as many times nurses have to think on their feet and come up with solutions quickly. Online nursing programs will help you understand how to do this, but it is important to understand yourself. 

Getting fit might not be such a priority at first, but once you realize just how physical a job nursing is, you will probably want to get yourself healthier and fitter so that you can carry out your work with less physical exertion and less exhaustion at the end of your shift. If you have a family to take care of, hobbies to enjoy, or you want a social life, then you will need to be a fitter nurse; otherwise, your work will wear you out, and you will not want to do anything once your shift is over. 

It can be hard to fit in exercise when you have a busy nurses’ schedule and shifts to deal with, as well as all the things mentioned above, but you must do it. You might not be able to dedicate a specific time to go to a workout class, for example, but you can still join a gym and go when you have a chance (perhaps before or after your shift; you can make it part of your daily routine). You can also go running – perhaps even run to work – or invest in a treadmill for your home. This is a great idea as you can watch TV, listen to music, or even study online nursing programs when you are using the treadmill, so you do not have to lose any time elsewhere. 

Have A Healthy Diet 

Ironically, although a nurse’s job is all about making people well and keeping them healthy, bad habits can form around food in a short amount of time if you’re not careful. Too many microwave meals, TV dinners, fast food, and takeouts can be very unhealthy for you, and you may not be getting the right amount of vitamins and nutrients that you need to function properly. 

Why do nurses, even those who have studied excellent online nursing programs and who should be the ones who know the most about healthy diets, not always make the right choices when it comes to food? It’s often down to time. Shifts are long, there isn’t much time at home, and there’s not enough time to head to a diner or restaurant on your break to order homecooked, healthy food. With just a few moments to spare, grabbing something out of a vending machine or something that can be thrown into a microwave and eaten quickly, is much easier. 

It’s not healthy, though, so if you’re a nurse who finds they don’t eat very well, one of your new year’s resolutions should be to eat better. There are many ways this can be done, including cooking extra food when you have time and taking the leftovers to work with you. If you do this, you won’t be spending any extra money, you won’t be wasting any food, and you’ll know that what you’re eating is healthier than anything you could order in or grab from a store on the way to the hospital. 

You might also ask for some help from friends and family. If you live with other people, perhaps they would help by making your lunch for you when they have time, and you do not. Neighbors might batch cook and give you food that just needs to be defrosted. People like to help nurses, and once you have been through online nursing programs, you will soon see that you become a treasured part of society, so do not be afraid to ask for help. 

Plus, of course, takeout once in a while, or some fast food on occasion, is not problematic and can be a great reward for a hard shift or a job well done. The key is in moderation, and once you have this down, you’ll be much healthier. 

Learn More 

Once you have completed your classroom studies, carried out practical lessons, and you’ve started working as a nurse, you might think you’ve done all you can – or all you need to do – to do your job well. For some people, that’s true. You can be an excellent RN and help improve people’s lives when they are sick and need not only medical assistance but also comfort. 

However, you don’t have to stay at one level of nursing. You don’t have to finish your online nursing programs and never learn anything again. You can go back to school, pick different online nursing programs that will help you boost your career, and learn even more than you realized you could. You might choose to specialize in a specific branch of nursing, for example, such as children’s nursing, caring for cancer patients, working in a busy ER, or being an OR nurse, among many different other options. This will require going back to school to gain the qualifications you need. Luckily, this will not need to disrupt your current working schedule through online nursing programs, as you can fit your studies around your shifts.  

Even if you want to stay in the same nursing job, you are in now, that does not mean that online learning should be abandoned; it can be interesting, even fun, to learn more about your chosen profession, even if you do not intend to use it in your job per se. Every bit of additional learning you will do will help to keep your brain active, and that’s good for you not just in terms of your career, but in terms of your health and life as you get older too. 

Plus, the more you learn, the smarter you can work. This means you can plan your shifts out so that you know you can get all your work done since you will have a good idea of how long each task will take, for example. It also means you can better give attention to those who truly need it while also getting on with your other tasks. 

Make One Sacrifice 

If it sounds strange to ask a nurse, who has already done so much for others, even when studying for their online nursing programs, to make one more sacrifice, don’t worry; it does make sense and will be in your best interests in the long term. This sacrifice should be so that your career is successful in the future, and the sooner you start, the sooner your success can begin. 

What can you give up that will help you to improve your career? Perhaps you watch a lot of TV; could you give up one hour of that TV a day to go back to school and find online nursing programs that will help you become a better nurse, or allow you to get a promotion and have more responsibility? Or perhaps you enjoy sleeping in when you have a chance. This may not be good for you; it’s better to wake up at the same time every day even if you don’t have anywhere to go. Not only will your body clock be more accurate, helping you sleep better and preventing insomnia, but you will have many additional hours in the day to study, to make healthy food for your breaks at work, to enjoy your hobbies, to work out, and much more. 

What one thing can you sacrifice to help you make your nursing career better in the future? 

Find A Mentor 

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Just as in any career, nurses can benefit from mentors too. Finding a good mentor to help you, whether you are just starting out on your incredible nursing journey or you have been nursing for a while, but you are not sure what you should do next in terms of your career and moving forward, can be exactly the right thing to do. You will gain career guidance, a clearer view of where you want to be, and how to get there, and you will even be able to identify your strengths and weaknesses more easily. Once you have done that, you can improve the areas you are weaker in and look at how you can use your strengths better in your day to day working life. 

Once you know just how much you can benefit from having a mentor, you might even decide to become a mentor yourself, helping others. You can pass on your experience, help them avoid any challenges that you had problems with, and build up a new generation of excellent nurses, which everyone should be glad of. 

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