Nursing Student Life

They say everything is about balance, and that couldn’t be truer. But there are some challenges we face that really through us for a curve ball on the balanced path.

I’m about to finish up my first year of becoming an RPN (registered practical nurse), also known as a licensed practical nurse in a lot of places. I am obsessed with this profession, I love my future career – but it is definitely a lot of work.

I know I’ve posted before about my hourly commitment for school being equal to that of a full time job, but I struggle with turning off the “work” part of me and enjoying everyday life. For me I prep for school/placement, do homework for school/placement, and actually attend classes/placement. It feels like there is no off switch, but I am trying.

My weekends usually are swamped with school work too, so it makes it a little harder. But I prioritize. For me school and my mental health are tied at first. Then family + boyfriend for second. Then everything else. I tend to be more anti-social during the school time, just because I love my friends but I have so little time in a day to balance. And with my mental health being first that means incorporating down time where I don’t have to think at all. Family is next because they fill up my good vibes and I always feel better after being with my family and my boyfriend. They don’t expect me to be anything but myself – good and bad moments.

What I’m trying to work on (as I obsessively watch other nursing students / healthcare workers youtube videos) is finding an exercise routine. Not only is it good for me physical but mentally as well. It calms, and releases those “feel good” endorphins. It is also good for coping with high stress. So I keep looking for something I like, and am actively working towards that.

Any workout ideas that work for you – please let me know!

 

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Well School Is Something

Hello again!

I have been gone for so long because my school semester started up in early September. And oh boy has it been a whirlwind. Don’t get me wrong, I am absolutely loving it (except pathology) but every accomplishment and learning moment is a moment I’m closer to becoming a nurse. Something I no longer have any doubt – that I’m meant to do.

I have 5 classes, and 1 placement. In total I have school about 30 hours for the week not including breaks, and about an additional 10 hours for homework, assignments, research, etc. So it’s a full time job at 40 hours a week. Most students in general will say higher education is a commitment, but my fellow nursing students will tell you by the end of the day (if possible) naps are your very good friend.

So what’s my point, other than life’s busy? Self-care, self-love, self-compassion.

My self-care, with a lot of effort, has stayed fairly solid. I sleep when I can in the day, and I go to bed no later than 9pm because I’m up early everyday. I practise meditation, but I’ve adapted to a more concise version – I find often I don’t have 10/15 minutes to just sit (even though I should make the time). I will count my breathes on a 1, 2 cycle – 1 inhale, 2 exhale. I will practise alternating nostril breathing before bed (block right nostril, breathe in; open right nostril, block left nostril, breathe out) – this usually puts me right out. I have also been practising gratitude. Where I’m in placement there are a lot of clients who need a lot of personal care, and some who have no support outside of themselves. It fills my heart to help them, and reminds me how wonderful it is that I do have that external support systems. And what’s more gratifying then getting to do something you love everyday? Every weekend I prep for the week: set alarms, reminders, plan out homework sessions, and review class content.

With very mental health specific self-care parts, I set reminders to shower, and shave on Sunday. I then ask my family to remind me if I forget or don’t feel up to it – shower every night and quite honestly to brush my teeth some days. It is so easy when we are in high stress, or crazy busy that we forget or drop things that already take us more effort to do – but these habits are essential to feeling good.

Self-love and self-compassion. I’m a work in progress on this. I don’t even bat an eyelash when I feel I can help someone, but when it comes to myself – I bat my eyelashes a lot. So I’ve been working on and researching some affirmations to start my day and have even recently set an alarm about mid-day to remind me to breathe and try out a positive, compassionate affirmation for myself. This section I will keep you posted on.

I could talk for days, and I will – I’ll just try to break it up a bit in my blogs.

If you have any questions about school, organization, self-care plans, pretty much anything – let me know and I will happily explain what I can and give tips on what I do.

That’s all for now !

30 Day Self-Care Challenge | Day 3

Ok so I’m genuinely surprised how hard this is to remember to make time for myself to do about 20 minutes worth of self care in my entire day. But it is such an amazing feeling as I do this list and that I am learning not to judge good or bad reports on my ability to accomplish but that it is something I am successful at because I am trying.

My picks:

  1. Meditate for 5-10 Minutes a Day
  2. Write down 3 things you’re grateful for
  3. Watch a TED talk
  4. Yoga

The rundown:

Meditation – I started a 15 minute guided one, and managed about 3 minutes until my distraction was pulled by people around. So far this is my biggest opportunity for growth.

Grateful for – 1. dinner with my boyfriend 2. liking my mom 3. bubble baths

TED talk – This fell through today, but I watched Youtube videos on healthy habits and routines, which was just as lovely.

Yoga – I managed to go a little bit longer and a little bit deeper into my stretches! It felt really nice with my music going, and a lot of deep breathing. I will definitely get back there.

Just a Reminder

A short note:

Valentine’s day doesn’t define you if you are single, or with a partner, or causal. It’s just a day for love. So love your other, love your friends, love your family and celebrate the good times with whoever you feel like.

You are strong and amazing – definitely love yourself.

Day 14/15/16 * Minimalist Challenge

Day 14 – Digitize

This is about scanning old photos, downloading music or changing documents to digital. But for me this is already done – almost all my stuff is digital.

Day 15 – Finances

This is a huge thing for me. Buying the unnecessaries and spending on the wants not needs. I have learned a lot and continue to grow. I am saving for what I want and preparing for the costs of what I need. I am teaching myself to be aware of finances.

Day 16 – Television

They suggest ridding of tv. Not happening. But the point is clear – some of us have 4 or 5 tv’s per room; necessary? no not really. It’s about consumption, as everything in minimalism goes back too. How much time do we watch tv? How much do we consume our time with tv watching? Can we downsize this consumption of time? Yes. Absolutely.

I have dropped down to watching tv in smaller intervals, and only really in the evening in between meditation and sometimes yoga.

2017 Goals and Hopes

How do you define success? Is it losing 10 pounds or is it being comfortable in your body?

Ideally we think ok set this goal and than I will be.. happy, confident, satisfied, etc.

But it’s the “than I’ll be..” that gets us tied up in a pattern of frustration. Why don’t we set ourselves up for success? Let’s make goals based off how we want to feel and see our life and not by how we are going to get there. Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to lose weight but ultimately I want to feel confident and love my body.

So here’s my top 3 goals and hopes for 2017:

  1. love my body and be confident
  2. feel joy in more aspects of my life
  3. feel strong emotionally and physically

What are some of your hopes and goals?

Day 8/9/10 of 21 * Minimalist Challenge

Day 8 – Beliefs

We belief a lot of things told to us growing up and what we see around us. Get the house. Get the nice car. Ou get that gold watch. But what should be believe, what is real value?

Real value is family, and friends and time spent doing things we love not buying things we are told to want. As we declutter we learn real value.

Day 9 – Growth

I read a saying today on The Minimalist challenge. “If we’re not growing, we’re dying”. A little morbid? Yes. But so true. What if at 16 years old we said ok that’s it I know everything (let’s be real almost everyone says it) but then we don’t strive to learn more or be different. At 23, 45, 50, etc. we should not be the same as at 16. We must strive to learn, love and overall grow.

The connection to minimalism is that we are learning to let go, and embrace a more joyful, less cluttered life. We are learning about ourselves and learning what we want and what we need.

Day 10 – Everything

This was a day of unpacking. But I did not unpack. Honestly? Yesterday I got a little plant for my space and added it to a shelve. But I found the green gives me joy. So I am ok indulging in small joys.