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Resilience in Time of Crisis: Strategies for Nurses

Updated: Dec 8, 2023


Nurturing Resilience: Essential Strategies for Nurses in Times of Crisis

Nurses are the backbone of healthcare systems, and the recent pandemic highlighted their immense contributions to the field. Nurses worked tirelessly to ensure patients received the best care possible, often at great risk to themselves and their mental health.


Adding mental health struggles to the already immense pressures at work, it becomes apparent that resilience among nurses is needed now more than ever.


Resilience is an important quality one needs to possess to help cope with the demands of their job, especially in times of crisis.


This article will discuss some strategies nurses can use to build resilience during challenging times.



Building a Strong Foundation: Key Steps to Enhancing Resilience among Nurses

Nurses can join online support groups or attend peer support sessions to connect with others who are going through similar experiences. Sharing experiences and feelings with others can provide a sense of belonging, reduce feelings of isolation, and help build resilience.


Maintaining healthy relationships with colleagues, friends, and family members is also essential when developing your support system to help them cope with the stresses of the job.



Thriving in Adversity: Empowering Nurses with Resilience Strategies for Challenging Times

Nurses are often so focused on caring for others that they neglect our well-being.


Practising self-care is essential for building resilience, and not just for Nurses. We all need to focus on ourselves and give ourselves permission to rest and reset.


This includes getting enough sleep, eating a healthy diet, and engaging in physical activity.


Mindfulness, meditation, and deep breathing exercises also help reduce stress and promote relaxation.



Unlocking Support: The Importance of Seeking Professional Guidance for Nurse Resilience

Nurses who are struggling with their mental health should seek professional help. Continuously fulfilling rigorous demands can lead to burnout, anxiety or depression if we don't look after our mental health.



Many healthcare organizations offer employee assistance programs (EAP) that provide confidential counselling services. Nurses can also seek help from mental health professionals in their community.


Seeking help is not a sign of weakness, and it can help nurses build resilience by providing them with the tools and support they need to cope moving forward.


Embracing Transformation: The Power of Adaptability and Change in Nurse Resilience

Each day will bring something new. Do not expect to recover instantly after suffering from poor mental health, you will have both good and bad days, but this does not mean you are failing or are starting back at square 1.


To be genuinely resilient you must embrace yourself and be flexible with everything that comes your way. It may be a small change, such as working a preferred shift, or a significant difference, such as changing jobs, but whatever it may be, embrace the change. Be flexible and ready to adapt.


Nurses face unprecedented challenges due to the aftereffects of the pandemic, and building resilience is crucial for their mental and emotional well-being. But by building support systems, practising self-care, and seeking professional help, nurses can develop the strength to cope with the demands of their job. It is essential to recognize that building resilience is a process that takes time, effort, and commitment. Nurses are the true heroes of this pandemic, and our responsibility is to support them in every way possible.


 

Reflection

  1. What does being resilient mean to you?

  2. How do you practise self-care?

  3. What change have you embraced recently?

  4. What strategies or resources have you found helpful in building resilience during challenging times?

  5. How can organizations and society better support nurses in developing and maintaining resilience?

Sources


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