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Four Tips for Healthcare Workers to Handle Stress and Anxiety During Their Shift

Bad days can happen to anyone, but they can be more common during times of high stress, pressure, and worry. COVID-19 is a source of concern for everyone, but healthcare workers may find that they’re dealing with more stress and anxiety than normal. Fortunately, there are some tools that can help.

Check In

Say you’re going through a rough time in your personal life and a trusted family member or friend reaches out to see how you’re doing. This makes you take a minute to do an honest assessment before you answer. That’s the idea behind checking in with trusted colleagues. Systems like check you, check two (where each staff member checks in on themselves and two colleagues a day) are proven to be helpful.

It doesn’t have to be anything formal. Support each other and seek support as best you can. If someone is having a harder time, it can be helpful to remind them of other tools here. Also, it’s always important to keep in mind that therapy and/or medication can be helpful in dealing with anxiety and other mental health concerns.

Use Calming Tools

What calms you? You can find something to keep on your desk or even in your pocket: a small water feature, a sand garden or hourglass, stress balls, and other items can provide a quick way to refresh your mind. Or just step back, take deep breaths, stretch, and/or meditate. These steps might seem small, but they can help make stress and anxiety more manageable for you.

Practice Self-Care

Self-care isn’t a cliché or something for other people. It’s for everyone, and it can help tremendously. It’s individual to the person; for some people, it’s a good book, a quiet spot, and a cup of tea. For others, it’s going for a run or cooking a meal. At work, it might be diversifying tasks as much as possible, taking breaks when you can, and talking with colleagues about how your work affects you. The point is to take care of yourself so you can continue being your best self.

Use Available Resources

If you’re a healthcare worker dealing with higher than normal levels of stress and anxiety, you’re not alone. At this time, there are more resources available, and it can be helpful to use any of them that feel appropriate for you. Your current assignment may have programs in place, and that can be a great place to start. You may find educational materials or information about mindfulness programs. There may be a hotline or crisis support program, as well. Your co-workers are sharing your experiences, and some of them may already be using these resources.

Take Care of Yourself

At 365 Healthcare Staffing Services, we specialize in the recruitment and placement of healthcare professionals in per diem, travel, and permanent assignments in healthcare facilities across the country. If you don’t take care of yourself, you won’t be able to provide the best possible care for your patients You won’t be at your best at home or in other situations, either. When you’re ready for your next assignment, we’ll be here to help. Call us at 310.436.3650, and let’s get started.