As a traveler, you are often thrust into a new environment and expected to pick up like you have been there for years. That’s why we admire your dedication and special skills during your assignments.
This holiday season, we have a few tips that might make it easier to cheer up your patients. The season can be especially difficult for those suffering from an illness, being forced to be apart from loved ones, or are simply uncomfortable with aches and pains.
It’s also not easy for you, as a traveler, to be away from family and working during this festive season. You’d be surprised how spreading a little extra joy can be a source of healing for both you and your patients. Try these five simple tips.
See if your facility will let you go beyond the typical desk wreath. With the patient’s permission, try sprucing up their rooms. Small décor that won’t interfere with treatment or tending to medical needs can bring many smiles to patients confined to a bed. You may even be able to draw a few trees and candy canes with washable markers on the windows. And, don’t forget to add some festive sparkle to your scrubs, badge/lanyard, and maybe even your shoes. For your patients, maybe a pair of holiday slipper socks.
Get Others Involved
Reach out to your local elementary and middle schools and see if teachers could have students write letters or create handmade decorations and paper snowflakes. Heartwarming letters and original creations are sure to brighten up the day.
Be a Good Listener
As a nurse it’s not unusual for you to try and fix anything and everything you can. But the truth is, much of patient emotions are far out of your control. This is a good opportunity to give some extra time to just listening. Patients will often open up about family traditions and fond memories. This can be very therapeutic for them and provides another level of knowing that you care.
Sing a Song
Caroling is a great way to help everyone get in the spirit of the season. Try organizing a few co-workers to gather and carol door-to-door. Or, if permissible, see if you can find a local choir or scout troop to donate their time to sing and stroll throughout the floors.
Celebrate Your Co-Workers
Organize a celebration with a pot luck, cookie exchange, or secret Santa. Supporting each other during the holidays can be so fulfilling. Nurses are dealing with stress and pressure on a daily basis, managing it during the holidays adds another level of complexity. Find joy in your work and appreciate how much you are helping others during this emotional time.
There are certainly many ways you can spread joy this season. Hopefully these five simple ideas will get you started on your way. Don’t forget to utilize technology whenever possible. See if you can arrange video chats with patients and their loved ones for a little bit of extra magic.
Have some great ideas or photos you want to share?
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I’m passionate about finding nurses the best travel assignments and helping them succeed in their careers.