Even though travel nursing can be a fun job, it is still a job. This means that, despite how fun or interesting your new location is, you still need to make sure that you have the time for all of your work assignments – and that you don’t miss the opportunities provided by the new setting.
In order to help with that, we consulted the experts in travel nursing – Ventura MedStaff.
They shared a glimpse into how they deal with this issue when asked by their new (and sometimes seasoned traveling medical professionals). Here’s how they break it down.
Create a Routine for Your Days
Being organized is a skill, and just like any other skill, it can be learned. It may be easier for some people, but we can all create simple routines that help us segment our days into easier-to-manage chunks. And after creating these routines, it will become difficult to understand how you lived without them.
Start with something simple, like creating a task list for yourself containing all of the important things you need to do. Things like paperwork or grocery shopping should be prominently listed on your daily task sheet so you don’t forget them. Try to keep as close to the task list every day, and soon enough, you will be following it fully.
Let Technology Help You
In today’s modern world, there are countless productivity apps and digital reminders on just about any device we use on a daily basis. Whether we are talking about your smartphone, a smart watch or a computer, you can use modern technology to your advantage.
Even in your work, implementing technology can optimize your workflow and ensure that you’re not behind on paperwork or that you have done everything you were supposed to do in your work day. If available, use things such as Electronic Health Records to quickly and securely access relevant and up-to-date medical records of your patients or services such as Clinical Decision Support Systems (CDSSs) which can help you come to better and more informed decisions when dealing with patients.
The hustle culture of the 21st century might work in some fields like business, but it can be a double-edged sword in medicine. Pushing yourself to the brink of exhaustion by working long hours might work in the short term but can also lead to burnout and even poor decisions in the workplace. And when nurses make mistakes, it can be difficult to fix them.
You need to take regular breaks during your work day. Even if it’s just for a walk or a stretch, getting a break from work is beneficial and can help you make better decisions for the rest of the day. The same thing applies to eating. Making sure you eat regularly ensures that your body and mind are working at optimal capacity at all times.
Plan for Your Free Time
Speaking of breaks, when you are off the clock, your time is your own. Don’t waste it – do the activities that make you happy and that recharge you on a mental and physical level. If that is reading and watching TV, go for it.
However, chances are that you will want to explore your new location – as most traveling medical professionals put a great deal of attention in the selection of their next assignment. A good way to ensure that you don’t waste too much time choosing an activity on your day off is to research the options beforehand. This way, when your day off rolls around, you can be ready and really seize the day.
Travel nursing can be a tough job, and it requires dedication and responsibility. However, with proper time management, you can achieve both everything your job requires you to, and everything you wanted to do during your stay.