Written by: Faryn-Ashley Easterling, RN
Being a nurse is hard. I used to work at an adult day care and assisted living facility. Some of us may see patients at their worst times, and the job doesn’t always feel rewarding. There are days when you feel drained by your work and feel like there’s nothing you can do about it. However, if you don’t make time for yourself to cope with these stresses, it can start to affect your work. You might end up burned out or depressed. That’s why self-care is so important for nurses. It helps us stay healthy, happy, and not only ready to care for our patients but for ourselves. It’s not selfish; it’s what we need, period.
Put yourself first
I used to get so caught up in work work work work work work. This was first because I didn’t want to say no when I was asked to pick up a shift as a new nurse. My boss at the time mentioned how I was young and had the “energy”. I felt like I had to prove myself, so I always made myself available (BIG MISTAKE). Another reason, the money was GREAT… I am not gonna lie.
After making myself so available, it was as if I could always be relied on and eventually I was taken advantage of. After some time, I realized I needed to put myself first, because I was dedicating all of this extra time to a job. I stopped focusing on my goals and what I hoped to do for myself.
Once Covid started, I left NYC and moved to Florida. Realizing I love everything about the future of healthcare, I told myself I’d find a career in tele-health and work from home. I promised myself I would only work with a company who valued me as a human being and was flexible. This was my first step of putting me first in my career. I had the control to apply to positions that I felt were aligned with my values and mission in life. By the grace of God, I was able to secure a position working from home in tele-health! This is when my life began to change.
My new job requires me to work 4 days a week with flexibility. SOLD! I am now able to cook breakfast, walk my dogs, spend time with my significant other and work out on breaks. I am in this position, because I finally understood my value and worth. We need to have a vision for ourselves and GO FOR IT! Even if it seems scary.
Do it scared
Fear is a sign that we are growing and evolving! I felt scared moving to Florida and searching for a new job. There are so many unknowns. I had no idea what kind of market I was getting myself into. It was May 2020 and no one really had a clue about anything. If you are at a job where you are unhappy and not feeling your best self, LEAVE. We all deserve to wake up everyday and feel appreciated for the work we do. The opportunities are limitless and you are always enough!
It is imperative to take time for yourself every day and make sure your own health needs are met. I love a good morning routine to set myself up for the day! Make sure you schedule time with yourself. Whatever that may be for you. It could be reading a book, going for a walk, a morning routine, a night routine, eating healthy, going to the beach, the list goes on. When you are on the job, take your breaks, use the bathroom and take days OFF! Don’t let burnout get in the way of doing what you love or who you are destined to be – take care.
My name is Faryn-Ashley and I am a Registered Nurse and Owner Of Best Damn Self, living in sunny Florida!
Best Damn Self is here to bridge the gap between our communities and healthcare in a fun and exciting way. As you may know, as a Registered Nurse, advocating and health education is extremely important in our line of work. It amazed me to see people struggle with health literacy. It also pained me when patients would tell me they understood something just so they won’t feel embarrassed or ashamed for not knowing.
Health care is a right and not a privilege. Everyone deserves access to the tools they need to take a hold of their health. Best Damn Self is where these issues end! We educate on a variety of different health topics with a focus on prevention. BestDamnSelf strongly believes the decisions you make today will impact your future. Healthy decisions equals the best version of yourself!
Instagram: NurseFarynheight and BestDamnSelf
Edited by: Claire Lang, BSN-RN