Assignment burnout: Symptoms and prevention

Written by Super User on Tuesday, September 24, 2013 Posted in On the Job

Assignment burnout: Symptoms and prevention

Travel nursing is a demanding job and can be very stressful. Nurses often have to deal with long hours and a lot of work. Sometimes there are personnel shortages they have to deal with, along with pressures from doctors, patients and their families.

With all of this, it is no surprise that nursing burnout can be a problem and is something all nurses need to be on guard against. Burnout can have serious consequences, resulting in both clinical and clerical errors. And it can have serious health effects as well.

You might be suffering from burnout if you notice an increase in fatigue or even exhaustion, irritability, headaches, a feeling of isolation or depression. Burnout can also cause a range of other illnesses.

What can you do to prevent burnout?

Those suffering from burnout often feel isolated, so it's important to have a good support system of family and friends, people whom you can rely on for help, or to whom you can go just to talk about your problems. Also, if you need to, don't be shy about seeking professional help if you are experiencing depression or anxiety. Therapy can be another way of helping to deal with burnout.

Here are few other strategies to follow:

  •  It's okay to say ‘no.' If you are feeling overwhelmed, you need to know that it is acceptable to say no occasionally, to turn down another task if your schedule is already filled up and sometimes even if it is not. It helps to give you a little breathing room.
  • Take time to care for yourself. Your job is all about caring and giving to others, but sometimes you need to think about yourself. You need to do things that will help you rest and recuperate. These things can range from something simple like a long, hot bath to a spa treatment or a vacation. But the little things you do can really help relieve stress, and you need to do them on a consistent basis.
  • Look for an outlet. An effective way to handle stress is to find a hobby or some other activity that will help to take your mind off of your work.
  • Make a change in your work situation. Are there any changes you can make to your schedule that can turn down the stress? Would changing to another department help? If you think these things would be helpful, check with your supervisor or union representative to see what can be done.
  • Expend your stress. It should become part of your daily routine. It doesn't have to be strenuous. There are a lot of ways to get exercise. It could be yoga, dance classes, swimming, volleyball, tennis or running. The important thing is to do it and do it consistently.

If you are a traveling nurse, talk with your agency. The agency is there to offer help and support, and it may be able to provide assistance, too.

If you've thought about working as a traveling nurse and want to know more about this exciting career opportunity, contact a recruiter at Health Providers Choice. We look forward to hearing from you.

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