Working in healthcare can offer several unique benefits including diverse career specialisms, excellent job stability, and a stimulating and evolving work environment. Healthcare workers also have the opportunity to help people daily and make a positive impact in their community.
That said, working in healthcare can also be demanding and draining at times. Healthcare roles typically involve long hours and high-stress situations. With that in mind, healthcare workers must place a special focus on maintaining their health and well-being. Here are five tips to help keep healthcare workers healthy.
1. Enjoy hobbies outside of work
Many people who work in healthcare are extremely passionate about their jobs and get great satisfaction from supporting others. However, you shouldn’t let your career take over your life and consume every minute of your day. Focusing too much of your time on work can cause high levels of stress and healthcare workers should be aware of the risk of burnout.
To avoid this, you must maintain a healthy work-life balance and enjoy activities outside the workplace. Having hobbies encourages you to take a break from work and socialize with others. Exploring different hobbies can also teach you a range of new skills and offer you an exciting new challenge. On top of this, many hobbies offer the opportunity to relax, recharge, and release any built-up stress. Some fun low-cost hobbies to try include gardening, DIY, scrapbooking, cooking, and sports. Experiment with different hobbies to find an activity you find interesting and enjoyable.
2. Spend time with loved ones
Maintaining close relationships with family and friends is fundamental to your overall health and well-being. Socializing with family and friends can also be a great outlet for stress and your loved ones can provide valuable support when you are dealing with life challenges. Regular social interaction can have dozens of health benefits.
According to Piedmont Healthcare, this includes reduced stress, improved emotional well-being, and better heart health. Research shows that socializing regularly could even lengthen your lifespan as a result of these health benefits. Make an effort to spend time with your loved ones and enjoy an active social life. You can maintain close bonds with your family members by eating meals together and arranging a night each week where you spend time together as a family. Doing this will help you establish a strong family unit and ensure that everyone feels cared for and supported.
3. Invest in your development
One of the main reasons why people feel unhappy in the workplace is due to a lack of career progression. Most people have aspirations to move up the career ladder and secure a more senior role in their organization. Being promoted and advancing in your career will help you gain a sense of fulfillment and accomplishment from your working life. You should invest in your professional development and take steps to boost your skills and expertise. This will improve your future job outlook and put you in a stronger position when advancement opportunities become available.
One simple way to enhance your resume is by completing online courses and qualifications. For instance, Baylor University offers online BSN programs for non nurses that are designed to teach healthcare workers the skills needed to become a qualified nurse. Having additional skills will open up your career options within the healthcare industry and maximize your earning potential. The best part is, online courses offer flexible learning and you can easily fit study around your work schedule and any other commitments.
4. Eat regular meals and snacks
Many healthcare workers are required to work shifts that involve irregular working hours. This can make it difficult to eat regular meals at set times of the day. Eating balanced meals regularly offers several benefits to your physical and mental health.
Firstly, eating regular meals will provide you with the energy you need to stay focused and complete your work tasks efficiently. This is particularly important for healthcare workers who typically spend a lot of time on their feet. Another advantage of eating regularly is that it will help to ensure that your body is getting all the nutrients it needs to function healthily.
Research also shows that eating frequent meals can aid weight loss by eliminating sweet cravings. Make sure that you consider your work schedule and plan when you are going to eat. It is a good idea to prepare healthy meals and snacks to take into work with you. This will help you avoid the temptation to reach for convenient food or vending machine snacks while you’re working.
5. Get enough quality sleep
Sleep plays a crucial role in maintaining good health and is just as important as eating a healthy diet and being active. Your body repairs itself while you sleep, so getting a good amount of it is fundamental to various bodily functions including memory, concentration, appetite, and mood. Sleep deprivation can cause significant harm to your health over time and contribute to high blood pressure, weakened immunity, and weight gain according to advice on healthline.com.
To stay healthy, healthcare workers should aim to get between 7 and 9 hours of sleep each night. Having adequate sleep will protect your physical health, boost your emotional well-being, and improve your quality of life. Getting enough shut-eye will also ensure that you can complete your work tasks to the highest standard and provide the best quality patient care. If you struggle to get to sleep at night, try doing some calming activities before bed such as soaking in a warm bath, listening to relaxing music, or reading a book.
Pursuing a career in healthcare can offer dozens of rewards including steady pay, career progression, and enviable job security. However, you must acknowledge that working in healthcare will be demanding at times. Caring for others can be physically and mentally draining and you must take some time to yourself to focus on your own well-being. If you currently work in healthcare or are considering a career change to the industry, then try the above tips to ensure that you stay healthy and happy.