The New Year is getting closer, and I hope you have started thinking about how you plan to make it your best, healthiest year yet. It is so important as a human being to be striving for improvements in every area of life. This includes health as most of you know. I am going to talk about some ways I am optimizing my health for the New Year — many of these changes I have already started to implement.
It is that time of year again when you start hearing about New Year's resolutions and making the next year better than the last. Goals are essential to being your best not only in the clinical setting but in life, and they are not hard to do at all. All it takes is a little time with yourself or your significant other.
I love the holiday season and the memories from my childhood that it reminds me of. Today, I think about spending time with family, and the time I will have off from my graduate school studies. The holidays can also be hectic and stressful at times if you let them. So many nurses find this to be their most stressful time of the year. With trying to manage their career schedules, family demands, and bringing it all together can be hard on anyone.
You may be saying to yourself, why would I want to work longer? You may say that now, but you may say something different five years from now. What if you need the money, what if you are working a job you love, what if you have truly found your purpose in nursing? What if you need something to do to keep from being bored and want to be compensated well for your time? Many nurses do not think about retirement until the last ten years of their career. Sometimes health crises can sneak up on you unexpectedly.
Hypothyroid is a common medical condition in our western culture and is basically an underactive thyroid. I would argue that many people don’t even know they have it and if they do they may not be doing anything about it. It is not a condition that will stop you from doing what you need to do in daily life so therefore most people will ignore it for years. Eventually, it will take its toll on your body if you let it continue to get worse and do not take steps to correct it.
It is hard to know where to start when addressing self-care, but for you as a nurse, self-care is critical. As a nurse, you tend to put other’s needs ahead of your own, but I am here to tell you to put yourself first by performing proper and consistent self-care. You have a duty to yourself, your family, your profession, and your patients to be a good example of health. I know that is a big pill to swallow, but it illustrates the importance of prioritizing self-care. If you do not choose self-care while you still can, then you will require healthcare eventually, and maybe sooner than you thought. Once you start requiring healthcare services, it is going to be difficult for you to get back to a place where you have a choice and then everybody else will be serving you. Choose wisely while you still can.
Nurses are great at taking care of others, but they are not always the best at self-care. If you want to serve others to the best of your ability and for as long as possible, then you will need to prioritize your self-care. By the way, serving others does not only pertain to your patients, but also to your family, friends, and the community in which you live.