4 Tips to Avoid Getting Over Stressed in Nursing School
Every college student faces stress at one point another during their academic career. However, that stress can be even greater for nursing students.
Between managing your studies and dealing with patient care during internships, it can quickly get overwhelming. So what are nursing students to do? How can you keep it all under control without getting overstressed or burnt out?
Consider these four tips:
1. Take care of yourself
Many nursing students forget how to look after themselves when they have to worry about caring for patients and getting schoolwork done. They might not eat as well as they should be or could cut out physical activity from their lifestyles. Regardless of how exhausted you are the end of the day, it’s important to make healthy choices in your life. Whether that means making a well-rounded, home-cooked meal or heading out for a run, it’s important to realize that you still come first. If you don’t take care of yourself, other parts of your life, including your work, could be affected. Exercise is also a great way to reduce stress. Studies have shown that some of the best exercises to relieve stress are aerobic activities, such as running, cycling or swimming. Getting your body moving can help you feel refreshed at the end of your day while burning calories.
2. Get an adequate amount of sleep
It seems like stress and sleep are cyclical. When people are stressed, they end up losing sleep. When people are exhausted, they end up performing daily tasks worse and acting more irritably, leading to heightened stress and further sleep loss. If you’re in this cycle, it’s important to break it! Find ways to loosen up before you hit the sheets. One way to do this is to watch what you’re drinking before bed. Certain beverages, such as caffeine and alcohol, can keep you up and cause you to have a more restless sleep. Plus, drinks like these also deplete you of necessary nutrients. If you have a cup of tea before you go to bed, make sure it’s decaffeinated. You should also stop using all electronic devices at least an hour before falling asleep. Looking at your laptop or phone can stimulate the brain and cause you to stay up for a lot longer than planned.
3. Lean on friends
It’s important to use friends to your benefit if you’re feeling stressed out. While having friends outside can be a great way to get away from work and school, it can also be beneficial to have friends at school. That way, if you’re worried about an upcoming project or test, you can buddy up with your friend to study. He or she may have notes on a class you missed or be able to explain concepts you don’t understand as well. Together, you might be able to conquer more than you would be able to do on your own.
4. Set a list of priorities
When you’re stressed out, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by the list of things you have to do. However, if you create a list of priorities and start with the most important task, your daunting set of obligations might not seem so bad. Remember to try taking one step at a time. Once you’ve accomplished one activity, you can move onto the next. However, don’t begin worrying about the second task halfway through completing the first one. You may do a worse job or leave something unfinished, which can only reflect poorly on you. If you’re worried you’re not going to get it all done, give yourself an allotted period of time for each activity.