travel nurses

Refreshing the Wanderlust: Dealing with Travel Nurse Burnout

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It’s that time again. Another contract is signed. You’re saying goodbye to new friends
and leaving to go off on your next adventure in travel nursing.

Sure, it’s awesome! I am currently on my 5th travel assignment , and I’ve had my share of great times. But, I also know how physically and emotionally taxing travel nursing can be. Frequent travel is tough on anyone, but the constant changing work environment can eventually wear out even the strongest travel nurse.

But there’s good news! There are ways to prevent your wanderlust from running cold. Here are a few.

Get some rest! It’s grueling to start a new assignment, especially during the first 1-2 weeks. New time zones can be a beast! Catch up on as must rest as you can while adjusting to your new surroundings.

Evaluate your goals. What are your reasons for travel nursing? Do you want more experience? Do you want to see new places? Do you want to enhance your resume? If you notice your excitement about travel nursing starting to wane, reevaluate your reasons for traveling. It may be time to change courses, and that’s okay.

Try a new activity! Look for new and fun things to do while on your assignment. It could be just the thing to re-energize your travel nurse experience.

Stay stress and drama free. One of the great benefits of working as a travel nurse is the ability to remain un-involved in hospital drama.  Is there strife between staff and management? It’s unfortunate, but not necessarily a concern of the traveler. You’re there to help, so you have to stay balanced. Of course there are situations that may stress you out, (frequent floating, various patient populations, etc.) and if it ever gets to be more than you can handle, talk to your recruiter.  Also keep in mind that if your assignment is not enjoyable, it is temporary.  Learn what you can from the experience and move on to the next adventure.

Happy stress-free, energy-filled traveling! Feel free to ask questions or leave a comment.

 

You Can Do It! 5 Must-Have Traits of Travel Nurses

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“You’re a travel nurse? That’s awesome, but I don’t think I could do that”.

 

Boy, have I heard this a lot!  Are you considering travel nursing,  but not quite sure you could handle the more stressful parts of the lifestyle? Read on then, because this blog’s for you. Allow me to share 5 must-have character traits that make travel assignments easier to handle.  You may not have all of these traits under your belt before you start life as a travel nurse, but be prepared to develop them at some point along your journeys.  Are you ready?Here we go.

  •  Hutzpah: I love this word! A travel nurse has to have hutzpah, or guts to move to a new city every few months. Making housing arrangements and packing alone will certainly test your grit. But most of all, the travel nurse has to be courageous enough to be thrown into a new working environment, which is not always easy.  Your colleagues are new. Your equipment is new. Everything is just so….new! Thankfully, developing hutzpah will help you to dive in and figure your way through the unfamiliar. You may even have fun learning new things.
  •  Adventurous: Go. See. Do.  I repeat. Go. See. Do. That’s your mantra as a travel nurse! Make yourself a “bucket list”  for each of your assignments. Be determined to have great experiences. You certainly don’t have to sky-dive or bungee jump on each assignment (you’re amazing if you do), but the time will fly by. You want to be able to say that you got out and saw what made the city/area great.
  • Even-keel: Yes, you will have hectic shifts at times. No, everyone may not be as nice as you would like them to be. Yes, you will have know each facility’s policies and procedures. Yes, you may have to spend extra time looking for equipment. No, your schedule will not be perfect. Yes, you may have to work a holiday. My best advice? Go with the flow. We travellers are essentially there to help.  Your ability to deal with various circumstances will make you a valued commodity to your colleagues!  So, do your best to calmly deal with whatever comes.
  • Flexible: Flexibility goes hand-in-hand with an even-keel  temperament.  You will need both to maximize your experience while on assignment.  Since you never know when you’ll be asked to float to a different unit or pick up an extra shift, it’s best to have the ability to handle change.   
  • Savvy: As a traveller, you will see and learn new ways to do things. That’s great! Travellers are valued not only for being quick learners, but also for having experience and skill. Take time to learn about different supplies, equipment and procedures. The ability to pass that knowledge on increases your skillset and overall value.  Afterall, you’re building an impressive resume here! 
So there they are. The traits that I think will help you to have a wonderful and productive career as a travel nurse. You may have read them and thought, “I am none of those things”, but please don’t let that deter you. Go on and get started, and watch how quickly you will develop these traits. I repeat, get started. Jump in! You may suprise yourself  with how skilled, adventurous and adapatable you become. Happy travelling:)