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Travel Nursing and helping people

How to Handle Loneliness as a Travel Nurse

Travel nursing can be a rewarding career.  You get to help people all over the country while also seeing new cities.  When you take on a new travel nursing job, you never really know what you’re going to get.  As a travel nurse, you can work with top doctors and learn new skills on the job through hands-on experience.  It pays well, too.

Despite all this, it can be easy to get lonely as a travel nurse.  Because the average assignment lasts only 13 weeks, it can be difficult to make friends or feel connected to any of the communities you are cycling through.  If this happens to you, it doesn’t necessarily mean you shouldn’t keep pursuing that next travel nursing job.  Here are some ways to handle this loneliness as a travel nurse.

Explore a new place

One of the best parts of travel nursing is getting to live in a new community every eight to 26 weeks.  Take advantage of that fact by going out to explore.  Search the internet for the best things to do in the area, or just wander around and see what you find.  It’s hard to be lonely when you’re busy and having a good time, so go see what’s out there.

Join a group

Whether it’s a gym or a book club, having a set place where you at least recognize people can be soothing when traveling and living alone.  Use an app like Meetup to find people with similar interests as you, or join a class through the local library or community center.  Volunteering is another great way to meet people and unite over a good cause.  You can even reach out to other travel nurses to see if they want to hang out sometime.  Chances are they have felt the same way you do at some point in their travel nursing career.

Keep in touch with friends and family

Just because you don’t live near people doesn’t mean you can’t talk to them.  There are so many options available for video chat today, not to mention just text and call.  You can even get creative and have things like game nights over video calls with your friends.

Dedicate time to a hobby

Do you love to read or paint but rarely make the time for it?  Have you always wanted to learn to crochet or play an instrument?  A travel nursing job is a travel perfect situation to set time aside for a beloved hobby or for picking up a new one.  Even if it’s just something you like doing alone, like having a movie marathon, make time for it.  You will feel more productive than if you sat around on your phone during your time off, and you will enjoy yourself more as well.

Make your temporary housing a home

Just because you are moving with every new travel nursing job doesn’t mean your housing can’t be homey.  Hang up pictures, decorate your room, and bring along beloved objects.  No matter where you are living, it can always feel like your home.  You could even get a pet to travel with you depending on the rules of the apartments you are living in.  Most places allow easy to keep animals like fish.  Plants are another good option.

Looking for your next travel nursing job?

Whether you are a seasoned travel nurse or want to give the career a try, New Directions Staffing can help you find the perfect position.  They know the importance of relationships and will connect with you long term to find the next best job for your career.  Call (888) 654-1110 to learn more. 

travel nurses

5 Self-Care Tips for Travel Nurses

Travel nurses deal with a lot. Between traveling and nursing, there isn’t much time for relaxation or self-care. However, proper self-care can improve the physical and mental health of an individual. As a travel nurse, you will work long hours and experience a lot of stress. Any time spent practicing self-care will greatly benefit your performance as a nurse. 

1. Get Enough Sleep

As you may know, sleep deprivation can cause depression, a lack of alertness, impaired memory, and lessen your quality of life. These side-effects will greatly affect your work performance and disintegrate your mental and physical health. Sometimes in nursing, it’s impossible to get eight hours of sleep due to a long shift or a night of being on-call. There is nothing wrong with taking a cat nap during your break. Even if it means going to bed earlier, the more sleep you get, the better you will perform at work the next day. 

2. Exercise

For many travel nurses, it may seem impossible to fit exercise into a schedule. However, the exercise you make time for can greatly benefit you. Exercise does not only benefit your physical health but also helps improve your mental health. Additionally, exercise helps to keep your thinking, learning, and judgment skills sharp and honed. Nobody wants to work a full shift feeling bogged down and tired. Exercise will greatly aid this and keep you on your toes. 

3. Eat Healthily 

Eating healthily, especially when on the road, can be difficult when you have little time to prepare meals. It isn’t impossible, however, to find ways to incorporate healthy foods into your diet. Consider cutting out some of the unhealthy, unnecessary sugars in your diet, or adding extra vegetables, nuts, or seeds to your daily lunch. An unhealthy diet can lead to grogginess and a lack of energy. With a better-balanced diet, you will have more clarity and energy at work. 

4. Find Time to Relax 

Travel nurses endure a lot. Tedious traveling, twelve hour-long shifts, overtime, and being on-call can take a lot out of a nurse. Remember, you aren’t inhuman. You need time to decompress and relax too. Even if you only have an hour to relax, you will greatly benefit your mental and physical health. Do what you need to de-stress. Activities that help you unwind could include exercise, taking a long bath, taking a walk to explore the location you’re in, or calling a friend or family member. 

5. Find a Hobby

Finding time to relax isn’t always easy, especially if you do not have any hobbies. Hobbies are a great way to reduce stress and improve your focus. Additionally, hobbies are a great way to healthily vent your frustrations. To find a hobby, think hard about the things you enjoy. You may have a hobby, but not even know it! Hobbies can include needlework, cooking, painting, coloring, reading, or writing. 

Travel Nursing Jobs 

If you are looking for travel nursing jobs, you do not need to look any further. New Directions Staffing has helped nurses all over the nation find assignments that they love. We do not only offer each of our nurses the chance to refer to our resources, but offer amazing benefits and compensation. We allow our travel nurses to pick and choose from assignments and support them throughout the entirety of their time working away from home. For more information or to submit your resume, visit our website.