When you ask what one disadvantage is of being a nurse, you often hear the answer, being tired. Being on your feet all-night/day, running from patient to patient or simply adjusting to your new schedule can all play apart in overall fatigue. We have compiled a few tips to help keep your energy up during a shift.
Tip #1 – Drink Water
Everyone knows you need to stay hydrated. And by hydrated we don’t mean drinking coffee to help you stay awake. One of the first signs of mild dehydration is fatigue. If you feel like you are starting to drag, drinking some water might be all you need. Plus, if you are drinking a lot of water, you’ll have to use the bathroom more. That means more walking, which will help keep you awake.
Tip #2 – Eat Nutritious Snacks
Eating a balanced meal for breakfast starts your day off right. But eating the right snacks during the day will keep your energy levels up. Instead of eating processed snacks like chips or crackers, opt to eat more fruit, vegetables and whole grains. Not only will you feel much more energized, you may lose a few pounds too!
Tip #3 – Keep Busy
When you start to feel like your dragging, find something to do. This is especially necessary on night shifts. It is easy to feel tired when work is slow. Finding something to keep you busy will help keep your mind from slowing down. Even if you’ve already checked on that patient once, maybe take a walk and check again. We hear playing cards is also a popular choice!
Tip #4 – Talk with Co-Workers
Another way to keep awake is talking to someone. When you engage in talking with someone, you are keeping your mind awake. You are stimulating your mind to think of topics and by responding to that person. Not only will this help keep you awake but it may help the other person stay awake.
Tip #5 – Walk Outside and get fresh air on your breaks
The last tip we have that could help you stay awake is going on walks outside on your breaks. Getting some fresh air is always good for you. The walk alone will help keep you awake. Breathing in fresh air just makes you feel better. May help to give you that second wind you need to finish your shift.