How Nurses Can Achieve a Work-life Balance

Everybody wants to achieve a work-life balance. That makes sense when it means an active social life, plenty of time to rest, and a more productive work day. Unfortunately, many nurses find striking this ideal balance challenging due to their long shifts and intensive work. After a while, it can feel like their nursing work controls them and seeps into every aspect of their life – the exact opposite of a good work-life balance!

There are solutions, though. Here are some ways you can achieve a work-life balance if you’re a nurse.

Spread Out Your Shifts

If you have multiple long shifts in a row, the chances are you will need more time for yourself. You should ask your manager to spread your shifts out a little more if necessary. That way, you’ll get enough time in-between to devote to your personal life.

An alternative way to spread out your shifts is to become a locum nurse. Locum nurses don’t work for a set medical practice; they can work wherever they are needed. Using a platform like Workflare can help you choose the shifts that work for you while giving you enough time to yourself.

Practice Better Time Management

One of the main reasons nurses struggle so much with a work-life balance is that they don’t have enough time. However, there is a solution to this: practice better time management. It might take a while to master, but knowing how to stick diligently to schedule and make the most of each hour will genuinely make a difference to your personal and work life.

Get Up Slightly Earlier

You might dread the idea, but getting up slightly earlier than you’re used to could be the solution to a better work-life balance. That’s because time is precious in the morning (or whenever you wake up). It’s time for you and only you. You could use it to read for fifteen minutes, do some light yoga, go for a short walk, or even watch your favourite YouTube channel – whatever you like.

Focus on Other Interests and Hobbies

There is more to you than just nursing, so make sure you focus on that when you’re away from the job. Whether you like badminton, hiking, reading, or foraging, be sure to make time for those non-nursing interests.

Eat Well and Exercise Often

It’s hard to make the most of your time away from nursing if you feel sluggish as soon as you clock off. So, to ensure your time gets spent well, eat a balanced diet and exercise often. These healthy changes will make it possible for you to enjoy some much-needed you-time, whether that involves socialising or hiding away with a book and a mug of coffee.

Learn When to Say No

Last but not least, learn when to say no. Whether your manager asks for overtime that you can’t do or your co-worker asks you to cover their shift, realise that it’s OK to say “no”. That doesn’t mean being rude; it just means setting boundaries. Remember – sometimes you have to come first!