People with anxiety are often misunderstood by those who have never experienced it. Anxious people may come across as unapproachable or rude, but really, they are struggling with nervousness and fear that often they don’t even understand. Although most people can understand feelings of nervousness – perhaps the way you feel when going for an interview or starting a new job – they still struggle to understand what it means to feel that way frequently and for no reason. There are all kinds of anxiety, from phobias to social anxiety. These anxiety disorders can affect people both mentally and physically, and as a result, they can become withdrawn or irritated. So, what happens when there are nurses suffering from anxiety? Having anxiety while working in such a social profession can be really challenging, so here are some tips for how to cope with anxiety in nursing.
Coping Tips for Travel Nurses Suffering from Anxiety
Since anxiety can strike at any time, and often has no rhyme or reason to it, it’s hard to prevent it from happening. In fact, sometimes worrying about when you will become anxious can often make you more anxious. Those with anxiety know that the struggle is real! Many nurses and other healthcare workers suffer from anxiety, so first and foremost, know that you are not alone. With that said, check out these four coping tips for nurses suffering from anxiety.
Make some lifestyle changes
If you struggle with anxiety, there are certain things that can make it worse. For example, if you are tired or hopped up on caffeine frequently, it can be harder to have a balanced mind. Getting enough sleep is one way for the anxious nurse to cope with anxiety. Try to avoid caffeine and instead rely on things like exercise to boost your energy throughout the day.
Don’t be afraid to tell people
Often times, when someone is having anxiety or a panic attack, they try to hide it. They don’t want people to know, and this can make the situation worse. It’s best to let the people around you know when you are anxious. It’s also especially important to tell your shift supervisor that you struggle with anxiety. As a nurse, you’re often in a fast-paced, high-stress environment and surrounded by people. It’s hard to get a moment to yourself, so make sure the person in charge knows that you might need to step away at certain times.
Find a coping mechanism
There are different breathing exercises that can help with anxiety in the moment. Try taking a deep breath, holding it in and counting to ten. This can help to reset your breathing and direct your mind to focus on being calm. Anxiety usually brings with it rapid heart rate and shortness of breath. Often times those physical symptoms make the stressful situation worse, so it can help to get them under control if possible. It can also help to find things to do every day that makes you happy and calm your nerves. Some people turn to painting, music or yoga as a way to balance the mind, body, and spirit.
The last coping tip for nurses suffering from anxiety is to consider therapy. We know that some nurses might roll their eyes at the thought of going to the doctor themselves, but it can help. Depending on the level at which your anxiety is affecting your performance at work, it might be a good idea to consider therapy from a psychologist or even getting prescribed anxiety medication.
What tips do you have for travel nurses suffering from anxiety? Share with us in the comments below!