New years are full of possibility. You can starting to build new habits and setting goals for the next 12 months. This helps you figure out realistic timelines for progress and growth. Starting tasks can feel like the hardest part so to help, we have put together a list of ideas kick start the process. For you, 2019 can be the most GIFTED year yet!
1. Further Your Education
Healthcare is continuously changing, growing, and advancing. Nurses are expected to gain specialized certifications as they advance their careers. With more experience, we can offer patients the highest level of care. Whether this means going back to school or registering for trainings and workshops, there are so many ways to make this resolution work for you. Learning will only make you a more competitive candidate for the highest earning jobs across the country. Now is the time to take that next step in your career!
2.Forgive Past Mistakes
The ability to forgive ourselves and others may be our greatest gift as compassionate nurses. Maybe you’ve been holding a grudge against someone in your family or you feel stuck in a rut and don’t know how to break the pattern. The new year is the perfect time to de-stress and let go of old negative experiences and feelings. People can fall into an “all or nothing” mentality that inevitably leads to disappointment if things are exactly what you were expecting. If we push past a need to control everything, we remember that things don’t need to be perfect to be pretty good. If you slip up or have an off day, just forgive yourself and keep trying. You got this!
3. Practice Empathy
Can we just be honest for a minute? Sometimes working with patients can be challenging. I can feel like the ones who need your help the most listen the least. But consider this: Individuals in need of care may have no idea what is wrong with them or just can’t deal with the stress that comes with health issues. Take this “new year” opportunity to heal and offer support to those who need it most. Not only will having empathy for your patients and their families help you to keep your sanity in check, but it will be the greatest gift you can give to anyone spending time away from loved ones and their normal life.
4. Spend time with your community
Nurses impact the lives of others in ways that most don’t. It can be easy to get caught up with daily work responsibilities and re-play interactions with co-workers and patients in your head. To help you feel restored, it’s so helpful to find friends outside of work. You’ll feel more connected to people around you and get a much needed mental break from caregiving. If you find people with similar interests, you’ll feel more motivated to try new things and be accountable to yourself and others. You can try social sites like MeetUp or find a local activity group to get started and feel the joy of connecting with new people.
5. Find your work-life balance
It is no surprise to any of us that it is difficult to balance your career with a personal life. Whether you need to spend more time on yourself or have been feeling overwhelmed on the job, the New Year offers the ideal opportunity to find new routines that work for you. How could you find more separation between work and home life? Practice leaving your personal issues at the door of the hospital when starting a shift and make an effort to not continuously talk about work at home. Maybe your new year’s resolution is as simple as taking an extra hour each week to do an activity you really enjoy. Most simply, life is too short to work it all away. Find what inspires you and work will feel more meaningful.
6. Learn a New Hobby
When we get busy or tired, it can be easy to forget about self care. Have you been feeling like a wounded healer? Try to find what heals you. Always wanted to try painting? Visit your local art studio and dive right in! There is no better way to keep your mind fresh and sharp than by learning a new set of skills. It’ll bring excitement to your life and help improve that work life balance we were just talking about. It’s time to jump in to the new year head first practice your beginner’s mindset.
The most important part of New Year Resolutions is just to try! No matter how long it takes or how many mistakes happen, if you show up and give it some effort, you’ll feel good about your progress. Cheers to what you can do in 2019!