Over the previous two years, the importance of healthcare staff has become more evident than ever before. As the pandemic wreaked havoc, healthcare workers emerged at the forefront and as the strongest fighters against a novel disease. Without their never-ending hard work, it would have been impossible to curb the spread and prevent the loss of millions of lives. Although all healthcare workers played a huge role during the pandemic, the nursing staff played a special role by working incredibly closely with all patients. Nurses typically spend the most time with their patients and play a vital role in influencing their healing journey. However, nursing is no easy job, and it can often be incredibly physically and mentally draining. If nurses are to perform to the best of their capabilities, they need to stay motivated and charged every step of the way. Here are a few tips for nurses and their supervisors to keep motivation levels high.
Advance your career
If you’re feeling a lack of motivation, it can often be due to stagnation in your career. When you’re new to a workplace or profession, you have a lot of motivation and vigor to do your best and move forward. However, you’re bound to come to the point of stagnation after a while, especially if you haven’t taken your credentials to the next stage. This can be incredibly demotivating and make you feel your potential is wasted.
However, many nurses often find it hard to make time for advanced degrees, given their hectic schedules. Choosing between career advancement and stable finances can be a challenging choice, but one you don’t have to make with an online program. Online master’s degrees are incredibly intensive and help you learn the latest, cutting-edge healthcare solutions from a flexible schedule. Online master in nursing programs can help you advance your career and regain your motivation and passion for healthcare. An advanced degree can help you serve in a specialized capacity and make a lasting difference in your patients’ lives.
Make time to relax
Making time to relax is vital if you want to stay motivated in any career, and nursing is no exception. A nurse’s work can be incredibly draining for multiple reasons. Nurses often work extremely long, grueling hours. Moreover, nurses have a very hands-on job and often have to help patients with a range of tasks that can be physically challenging.
There are a lot of mental stressors on the job too. It can be hard not to develop an attachment to your clients, especially younger patients and cases which personally resonate with you. Watching these patients struggle and potentially fail to recover can be incredibly hard. In such a scenario, detaching from work is essential to recover your physical and mental resilience. When you’re at home, do your best to focus entirely on your family and friends. Spending time with your loved ones and doing the things you enjoy can help you refresh yourself and come back more motivated than ever before.
Offer clearly defined roles
Often what can make a job so demotivating and confusing for employees is a lack of direction and clarity. Healthcare institutions are no exception, and if nurses don’t have clearly defined roles, it can be challenging for them to perform to the best of their capabilities. This is exceptionally important when it comes to new nurses, who need proper guidance on what their position entails.
Helping nurses understand their role’s exact expectations and limitations can give them a clear framework to operate within. Moreover, this guidance can help nurses better understand the roles and expectations of other nurses and can help them recognize when someone is overstepping their boundaries. Once nurses know what they’re supposed to do, they can be more motivated to achieve their goals and progress further. Ambiguity can demotivate even the most talented nursing staff, so it’s essential to prevent it.
Offer constructive feedback
Feedback – both positive and negative – can easily be one of the biggest motivators for nursing professionals. Feedback is essential for nurses to improve and figure out what they should and shouldn’t be doing. If you offer no reaction, nurses will find no motivation to change things up or won’t know what they need to change to perform better. This can then lead to performance stagnation and a sharp drop in motivation.
Instead, always make sure to offer nurses feedback wherever possible. Scheduling weekly meetings can help you regularly assess everyone’s performance, and determine which practices need to stay and which ones need to change. These weekly meetings can keep staff members striving to be better and give them a clear guideline on how they can improve further. However, when offering feedback, it’s important to be constructive. Too much criticism can be incredibly demotivating and can make nursing staff perform worse. Actionable suggestions can show nurses how to move forward instead of vague criticism that they gain nothing from.
Give them some space
While offering feedback is vital, it’s also important not to be overbearing and too demanding. Many supervisors often feel they need to stay updated on what the nursing staff is doing every step of the way. This can create an environment that is too restrictive and keeps your nursing staff from exercising their independence, creativity and skill. Such a stifling environment can keep your nurses from staying motivated.
Instead of offering an overbearing presence, give staff members a clear picture of the general expectations and let them make their way to the goals. This freedom can help nurses navigate independently through the workplace and can help them stay motivated as they find creative personal solutions. Moreover, this form of leadership can help nurses stay more engaged and create a much more dynamic workplace.
Keeping motivation levels high in a healthcare institution may seem challenging, but not with these steps. These steps are essential for junior and senior nurses alike to stay motivated and perform to the best of their capabilities. Through greater motivation levels, nursing staff can be much better equipped to take care of their patients in the best way.
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