13 Jan 5 Steps to #SELFCARE
Nursing is a profession where we give ourselves to others. On occasion, we give more than we have to offer. As a new grad RN, I had some trouble finding the balance between offering myself enough #selfcare on my days off. I found it difficult to decompress after a tough shift or a patient death. On the other hand, I’m not sure I’ll ever be okay after a patient death (is anyone ever?!).
I used to think that I wasn’t giving myself enough “relax time” if I couldn’t dedicate an entire day of the week to self care. I’ve quickly learned how unrealistic that is. I now try to fit in any method of self care or relaxation whenever possible, because hey, I deserve it and you do too!
After a year and a half of nursing at the bedside and nearly half a year working in a busy IVF clinic, I’ve developed some tricks that help me to decompress and give myself the TLC that I’m always craving.
1. A CUP ‘O TEA
There’s something unique about that first sip of tea on a cold winter day (or, ok… maybe the second sip because the first is too hot). I’ve always said tea is like a hug from the inside out, and sometimes that’s exactly what we all need.
I’m personally a David’s Tea addict. I just love that their teas are so versatile and flavourful, suiting whatever your craving may be. My current obsessions are their herbal Organic Throat Rescue and their rooibos Carrot Cupcake. I love both of these teas because they’re caffeine free, making it the perfect thing to sip on after a long day (or night) at the hospital.
I’m a girly girl (if that wasn’t already given away by the title of this blog…), so I find great relaxation in pampering myself with face masks, hair masks, lip scrubs, you name it.
My current favourite mask is the Glam Glow Thirsty Mud Hydrating Treatment. Winter air makes my skin feel so dry and tight, and this mask helps my skin to feel moisturized and dewy again. My lip scrub obsession is Lush’s Sugar Plum Fairy – I stocked up on this one about a year ago, so I’m not even sure if it’s still available. Nonetheless, their lip scrubs are amazing.
3. GET SOCIAL
Spend time with the people you love! I cannot stress this enough! Nurses (and other healthcare professionals) spend so much of their time giving themselves and their time to patients. Never will you find a nurse venting to their patient at the bedside… or at least I hope not!
Make sure you surround yourself with people who will make you laugh, listen to you and allow you to emotionally decompress when you may need. Whether that’s a call to your mom, your best friend, your partner, anyone! While nursing is a very interpersonal and sociable profession, it’s just not the same as getting into those wine giggles with your best friend over the latest Bachelor episode. Go, text someone you love… now!
4. GET LIT
You’ve probably taken this the wrong way… Light a candle or plug in your oil diffuser and get those yummy scents flowing! I’m one to do at least one of the two as soon as I walk through the door after work. My favourite candle scent is Bath and Body Works Lavender Vanilla because it has essential oils in it that naturally help to give a sense of calm and relaxation. My favourite diffuser blend for my oil diffuser is Spa Spirit from Saje. It literally smells like a spa. Pair this with pampering, and you’re set.
I am always tired. What makes it even worse is that I’m not much of a napper, so getting a good nights sleep is super important for me. Everyone has a different “sleep number”, and no I’m not talking about that mattress commercial!
I personally know that I do not function well on less than six hours of sleep, so I always plan ahead to ensure I will always get my six hours in at an absolute minimum. Feeling rested will help you feel more levelheaded, less stressed and ready for the day ahead.
As I already mentioned, I love lavender. Lavender helps me to feel more relaxed as I wind down for sleep. I love to spray my pillow with my Deep Sleep Pillow Spray because it sets the tone for relaxation and a good (well deserved) rest at the end of a busy day of nursing.
Do your best to fit at least one of these #selfcare methods into your day, every day, as a little reward to yourself.