The contribution of frontline personnel including our doctors, nurses and other medical staff amid the Covid-19 pandemic is unparalleled. Working tirelessly night and day till they dropped, additionally, they was required to deal with lack of essential items as they struggled to save lots of lives and take care of Covid patients. What better day than to highlight the contribution of our nursing fraternity than International Nurses Day which is celebrated about the world yearly on, may 12 on the anniversary of Florence Nightingale’s birth.
Here are five simple yet effective steps for nurses to care for their mental health.
Get satisfactory sleep: Nurses often stay up at hospitals during night shifts. Getting a good night’s sleep is primary mental health insurance and it’s not just the number that matters but the quality as well. It recharges our minds and rejuvenates our souls for a new start. Sleep is a must for everyone – especially for nurses.
Express yourself: No one wishes to remain at the workplace for years but when it comes to healthcare personnel especially nurses, longer working hours is inevitable. Nurses who are in health centres will often experience burnout and fatigue leading to feelings of resistance, indifference, and absenteeism.
However, the best way to fight it out is by sharing and opening one’s heart to someone close and that can be trusted. It could be your spouse, someone from the family, or a close friend or mental health professional. Take time to share and vent out your feelings. It helps in feeling lighter and creates space for new perspectives.
Create ‘me-time’ every day: Whenever some leisure time can be found during the hectic hours, it is good to divert one’s mind from the standard tasks. It could be either by listening to music, doing mandala painting, playing with pets, or any other activity that eases one’s mind. Make sure to give a touch of creative imagination to the activities. Creativity has a strong impact on the happiness quotient as it requires you nearer to your childhood and provides a healthy disassociation from all the worries and stress.
Maintain physical distance but not emotional distance: Staying emotionally linked with family members elevates your mood, instils a sense of belongingness, facilitates self-esteem, and reduces stress. It really is a must for a nurse to get quality time with family and friends. It can be a tiny virtual get-together or a video/phone call. It does work wonders when we hook up with our childhood friends, college friends, or families of a close bond.
Seek help: There is no harm in seeking help from a specialist for mental health. When things walk out our hands, it is often prudent to seek professional help and proper medical advice. It could perhaps just be a step closer towards healing. Reaching out for help is not really sign of weakness, rather it shows your strength, courage, and respect on your own self.