Nurse Parent: Striking the Perfect Work-Family Balance

Nurse Parent: Striking the Perfect Work-Family Balance

Being a parent keeps you extremely busy. Being a nurse keeps you extremely busy. Now combine those two (full time jobs) together, and you have one incredibly busy person, juggling a lot of balls. So how does a parent-nurse do it all? What is the secret to being that amazing parent who is always a reassuring presence in their child’s life, while at the same time being a dedicated nurse to their patients?

Each job requires dedicating your heart and soul to nurturing and caring for others. The key to doing a great job at both of these important roles is striking the balance of not allowing your personal and family life to interfere with each other.

Here are some practical tips on perfecting the art of balancing being a nurse and a parent:

Manage Your Stress

When people are busy, and life gets hectic, one of the first things that often suffers as a result is their sleep. There is so much to do and accomplish that cutting back on sleep seems like the only way to get more done. Not getting enough sleep makes you feel more irritable and increases your stress levels, which definitely won’t help in getting more accomplished. Making sure to get a full night (or day’s) sleep is of utmost importance for everybody, but is especially crucial for those whose job requires increased levels of energy and stamina. By getting adequate sleep you will not only feel great, but you will be able to do your best in taking care of your patients and your children.

Also, we all know that a nurse’s work can be intense at times, often dealing with tough situations. Don’t bring the stress home with you! Before coming home to greet your family it is a good idea to remove your medical uniform and take a few moments to and decompress and relax, allowing the stress from your job to fall away before walking through your door. You can do this by listening to relaxing music on your way home, indulging in your favorite chocolates, or doing deep breathing exercises. Do it for yourself, and do it for your family.

Getting Proper Help

We often want to do it all, not imposing on others for help or favors. Don’t we all feel better when we feel like we can do everything ourselves? Maybe in the short term, but it’s not possible for one person—especially a nurse parent—to do it all. Accepting the fact that you can benefit from help, and graciously accepting the help offered to you will make a huge difference in your life. Whether it’s your mom offering childcare help or your partner stepping in to do household chores or cook dinner, these small acts will make things so much easier for you. Just the knowledge that everything is not on your shoulders, and that someone is sharing some responsibility with you will make you feel so much more at ease.

Shifting the Balance

As the children grow older, and life circumstances change, you may need to take a look at your job and reevaluate to see if any changes are necessary to properly care for your family. You may realize that a shift change is due so you will be more available to be with your children. Whatever it may be, it is important to take the time out every once in a while and see if things are working for the common benefit of everyone, and then adjust things when necessary.

It’s all a work in progress. What works today may not work tomorrow, and what works for one nurse parent may not work for you. So, put your best foot forward and feel proud as you go about and accomplish amazing things as you positively impact the lives of others.

Male Nurses: Overcoming the Stigma

Male Nurses: Overcoming the Stigma

Over the past half a century, the number of men in the nursing industry has increased exponentially. In the sixties, only 2% of men were nurses. Today, the percentage has climbed to 13%. That’s an 85% increase, which is huge!

However, if 13% of nurses are men, that means that 87% of nurses are not. There is an extremely disproportionate number of men in the nursing field, and there’s no real reason for it, other than stigma. But today you’re going to learn just how senseless this stigma is, and why it must be stopped.

Originally, men were nurses. In 250 B.C., the world’s first nursing school opened its doors, for men only. Yes, nurses were originally all male! But times have changed. Nowadays, women make up the bulk of this once male-dominated industry

Why? Because of the stigma. What’s the stigma, you ask? The stigma is that nursing is a caregiving position, and therefore, such a job should be reserved for women. Now, here’s the fallacy of such a statement. Today, women are doctors, accountants, and policewomen, jobs which were once considered to be for men, and no one thinks twice, because gender bias deserves no place in a country as morally advanced as the US. But for some incomprehensible reason, there is a significant amount of gender bias. Pay attention to the nursing industry, and you’ll notice it there.

But this has to stop. We need male nurses; they’re just as capable, strong, and intelligent as their female counterparts, and add a much-needed balance to the industry.

How Can We Stop the Stigma?

  1. Never belittle the concept of someone becoming a male nurse. Being a nurse is something to be proud of, regardless of gender! It shows you’re a caring, kind person who wants to help others and has the ability to accomplish goals.
  2. Respect men in the nursing industry. These men are people who don’t care what everyone else is doing. They do what should be done, regardless of what others will think. And that is something to look up to.
  3. Spread the word about the benefits of becoming a male nurse. The pay is fabulous, the line to the bathroom door is moot, and promotion is likely (since men are more likely for promotion overall, and there are so few men in the field to begin with). There are many more positives about this career; perhaps we’ll get into the details another time, but even just the aforementioned benefits can be enough to show guys you know that this is a field worthy of their consideration.
  4. Become a nurse! It’s a great career choice for men, and every additional male nurse makes a difference in the percentage.

Tips for Men in the Nursing Industry

Being a male nurse isn’t always easy, but it’s wonderfully rewarding, both financially and emotionally. Here are a few tips for you to get the most out of being a guy in scrubs.

  1. The same way men prefer male nurses, women often want to be cared for by a female nurse. This is nothing personal; don’t take it to heart. There will be many a man who will be really happy to find out you’re being his nurse.
  2. There are many organizations, such as AAMN and The Brotherhood of Nursing, which can help you connect with other male nurses.
  3. Does it bother you that most scrub stores are so feminine focused? Then you may prefer to shop at Murse World, which exclusively provides guys with a full selection of male scrubs from all the best nursing uniform brands.
  4. Stay confident and proud. You’re helping so many patients, and simultaneously breaking gender barriers in the nursing industry.

Whether you’re a nursing student, a nurse, a patient, or anyone else, you can have a part in stopping this unnecessary stigma