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50 Self-Care Ideas for Nurses to Recharge on Days Off

Ameritech-2016-06-16-Nursing-Self-Care-Blog_Blog

Nurses are an amazing bunch. They tirelessly strive to provide the best possible care to their patients. But perhaps “tirelessly” doesn’t quite sum it up; nurses, just like every other diligent professional, do get tired and need to practice good self-care so as not to burn out. It may be because of the concerted effort it takes to amass the knowledge for the job while in nursing school or studying for the NCLEX. It may be from absorbing so much new information in a first job landed after degree completion. Nurses work extremely hard, and it’s a highly rewarding calling. But even our nursing heros need to take time to recharge on days off.

So, nurses: The next time you have a moment to focus on yourself, try one (or many) of these self-care ideas.

  1. Make a playlist of songs that make you want to dance through the house. (It’s also a great workout!)
  2. Buy some bath bubbles or salts and let those weary muscles have a break.
  3. Get out into nature by taking friends on an easy hike through the beautiful scenery.
  4. Find some peace of mind by checking an easy to-do off your list.
  5. Look up a new, simple recipe and cook at a leisurely pace.
  6. Invest in a fresh set of scrubs or some other bit of fashion that’ll make you feel fabulous.
  7. Check into the spa for a massage, pedicure, or other relaxing treatment.
  8. If you have kids, color with them. If you don’t have kids, color anyway.
  9. Visit the library and pick a book you haven’t heard of (bonus points for judging it by the cover).
  10. Take a trip to the local art or history museum and walk slowly through the exhibits.Don't underestimate the power of a good book
  11. Spend 20 minutes reading about a new hobby you’d like to get started on soon.
  12. Prep a large amount of snacks and veggies you can bring to work with you throughout the week.
  13. Call an old friend you’ve been wondering about and catch up on their latest news.
  14. Do something small to change your home environment, like adding a new houseplant or poster.
  15. Go to a nearby yoga studio, dance space, or spin class for a recharging workout.
  16. Nurses spend so much time on their feet. Try this effortless pose to help relieve the aches and pains.
  17. Watch an uplifting movie you remember enjoying in the past.
  18. Cozy up to your cat, dog, or even a nice, big pillow.
  19. Surround yourself in a calming scent with lavender candles or essential oil.
  20. Lace up your sneakers and hit the pavement on a quick neighborhood walk or run.
  21. Download a new podcast about a topic that interests you, and listen to a whole episode without multitasking.
  22. Buy a pack of thank-you cards and write a nice note to your old mentors.
  23. Pick a fantasy vacation spot and start planning a trip for down the road.
  24. Abandon your email and phone, setting ringer alerts for only those who really need to get through.
  25. Bring a blanket and a book of poems to the park, or people-watch in the coffee shop.Relax in nature
  26. Satisfy your inner kid with some video games or a favorite childhood movie.
  27. Organize your junk drawer. Experience momentary Zen in a chaotic world.
  28. Make plans to do an unhurried sit-down dinner with your best friend.
  29. Make it a point to catch the sunrise or the sunset.
  30. Read through a list of inspirational nursing quotes to get your imagination working.
  31. Take a good old-fashioned nap.
  32. Be it a thriller or a rom-com, head to the movie theater — and eat as much popcorn as you want.
  33. Find a nonprofit organization that promotes a cause you care about, and sign up to volunteer.
  34. Drive out to the country with a pal for some stargazing on a clear night.
  35. Try your hand at meditation. The internet has a wealth of guided meditation recordings to choose from.
  36. Try kayaking, skiing, or another new, exhilarating activity that’s both fun and challenging.Seek adventure!
  37. Book a haircut. Maybe even try a brand-new look.
  38. Find a collage picture frame and create an updated collection of family photos for the entryway.
  39. Take a class in something you’ve always been curious about, such as woodworking or martial arts.
  40. Try a new type of cuisine.
  41. Experience a few hours of live music at your local jazz or bluegrass venue.
  42. Treat yourself to a smoothie or a bagel you wouldn’t otherwise spend money on.
  43. Get your hands dirty by starting a garden in your yard.
  44. Put on a favorite record you used to love in high school and take a trip down memory lane.
  45. Do something with your hands, such as knitting or crocheting.
  46. Practice pottery or painting, even if you don’t consider yourself to be a creative genius.
  47. Relax on the couch with a heating pad or hot water bottle.
  48. Hop in the car and take yourself on a spontaneous day trip outside of town.
  49. Get a beginner’s workbook in a foreign language and learn a new phrase or two.
  50. Eat breakfast for dinner.

What are your favorite ways to recharge your body and reinvigorate your mind on your days off? Visit our Facebook page, and let us know. We’d love to hear from you!