What you need to know about online nursing education —Nurse.com

Below is a great article that describes the pros and cons of online nursing schools. If it were not for online nursing schools, I feel I wouldn’t have been able to accomplish the growth in my professional career. I am currently in my Masters in nursing education program and it is online. It is great for students that have to work or have other obligations, and they cannot make it to a traditional brick and mortar school.

It is not easier, this is a myth. I think it is actually a little harder, because it requires discipline and major organization. It is not for everyone, but is something that could allow you to pursue a higher degree, if you can make it work. I achieved my Associates degree via a hybrid program. This was online and then we went to the school for labs and test. Clinical was scheduled at local hospitals. My bachelors degree was entirely online. I am used to the online program layout and having to be self initiating with my studies. My Masters degree I am struggling with the self initiating part. It has been really hard this time around for me to organize and sit down to do my work. Blogging and crafts is were I want to spend my free time, and watching Stranger things! Ha! I need to get it together though, because if I don’t get through it I will want to kick my own butt.

The article below is from nurse.com. It really explains how the nursing education is shifting and how this can be a valuable tool to allow professionals to increase their education!

Nursing ranks among the top three most popular undergraduate and graduate online education majors. It trails only business administration and computer science and engineering, according to the “Online College Students 2016: Comprehensive Data on Demands and Preferences” report. Online educational opportunities in nursing have taken off, according to Karen Ouzts, PhD, RN, APHN-BC, BSN program director…

via What you need to know about online nursing education — Nursing News, Stories & Articles

Spooky tales of nursing…just in time for Halloween! (Not for the faint of heart)

Halloween has me in a sit by the campfire and tell some stories kind of mood. If you have been a nurse for any amount of time, then odds are you had a few pop in your head just reading the title! I probably watch way too many horror movies, so I find myself in these “I’m creeped out positions quite often” Reader beware…boooooooo, ahhhhhhhhh, muwhahaha *cough, cough* (clears throat)…okay I’m done, ha!

1) The spooky things people say!

Recently, I was in the ER with my brother. He was diagnosed with pneumonia. For those of you that don’t know my brother is disabled, and he lives with me. The ER found out I was a nurse somehow. I can’t quite remember how, but the jig was up. I wasn’t overbearing either! Really, I always try and stay low key. So, the nurse was taking my brother to his room that he was admitted to. The nurse and I made small talk along the way about nursing and weather. Then he looks at me and goes, “Well, be glad your on the 1st floor.”  I looked at him puzzled and grudgingly asked: “okay, why?” He said, “Well, the second floor, right above us, it used to be our psych unit, before it was closed down when the new company took over.”  He looked around nervously like he was telling me the secret recipe for KFC’s fried chicken and said: ” a lady hung herself on that floor.” He then let out a small sigh, “you could never pay me enough to work night shift here.” “People say she still haunts that room and you can see her ghost roam the halls.” Then he kept going, ” There are knocks on the walls and doors that open and shut.” I must have had a look of shock and pale because he nervously laughed and said: “But you’re on the first floor, you should be fine!” It was 12:00 am when my brother and I arrived at the unit, Nightshift! We said our goodbyes and he scurried away. My brother was asleep, but every knock, door closing, or shadow, I went under the covers. Maybe, he was trying to get a rise out of me, but honestly, the way he spoke, I think he was serious. Guess, I will never know. I can say I didn’t run out of the hospital screaming in the middle of the night. I never experienced anything. It was still creepy though!

2) I see dead people?!

Have you seen the movie Sixth Sense? Or I like to call it “I see dead people!” Well, this is the direction this tale of nursing is going. I was a new nurse at a long-term care facility. I worked on the floor that had a lot of palliative/hospice care. So most of my clients were at the end stage of life and under comfort measures. I worked night shift and was in my medication round for the morning. I walked into my last client’s room. She was female and had been on comfort measures for a while. When I walked in I was shocked to see her talking up a storm. This was unusual for her. If you asked her a question, she would nod yes or no or point. As her illness progressed, she stopped talking, and that is how she communicated. I looked over at her and said: ” I’m so glad to hear your voice, how are you this morning?!” She never looked at me and continued her conversation. It wasn’t making any sense to me. I leaned over and asked her, as I was giving her medication to her,  “is there anything you need?” She came out of her trance and said “no but you might want to ask him.” I looked at her strangely. “Who are you talking about?” Still glancing at me she said, ” well, he won’t go away, so I think he wants something!” I was really confused. “I’m really sorry, but I don’t know who you’re talking about?” She went back to looking where she was initially. She said, “well he is behind you!” My hair stood up on my arms. I didn’t dare look behind me at that moment. She didn’t seem bothered by him just irritated. I finished her medications. I turned on the lights and surveyed the room. I didn’t see anyone. I asked her if she was okay and she shook her head yes. I quickly left the room! She never talked again after that and ended up passing away just a few days later.

Do you have any spooky tales of nursing? If you do, feel free to leave them in the comments section! Also, don’t forget to subscribe to my blog, via email. All the cool kids are doing it! Plus, you get automatic updates from me, crispyfriednurse!

Happy Halloween!! Stay safe!!!

7 signs your experiencing nurse burnout

Do you really need to know the signs of nurse burnout! I think so! Having experienced it myself, I have found that it can really sneak up on you! Then you’re left with confusion, exhaustion, and you don’t know what to do! So here are 7 signs your heading for nurse burnout! And of course, all of these or just some of these might apply. If anything it might raise a red flag that something is a miss and you need to take heed! Also, am I in no way suggesting you quit your job, or nursing for that matter. I just want you to know the signs of burn out, and how to recognize the symptoms. You can do this by taking a break from your job if you can like a vacation, talking with someone, or maybe a job change is in order. That is okay! If you’re like me, you cant afford to up and quit, I would think most people couldn’t do that. But it can help to look at different specialties and see if a change could help!

1) Are you calling in a lot from work? So have you called in so much your starting to run out of excuses, and you start using some really weird ones like ” My dog has the flu” ” I can’t come to work because I’m stuck in the house” or maybe ” I tried a new recipe from the Food Network, and it was a fail, now I have food poison”. Well, in theory, some of these could be valid excuses, but really if you see the increase in calling in and the dread of going to work, you could most likely be burned out.

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2) Your tired, not just the, I stayed up late and watched Game of Thrones tired. I am talking no amount of sleep can cure this tired. When I get stressed I can sleep for over 12 hours and still not feel like I got any rest. Especially on days after I work. This can also be a warning sign of nurse burnout. Of course, it can also be you can’t sleep! I have also been through this. It seems to be a cycle of no sleep, then excessive sleep. It is important that you get the rest you need, but if you feel like you just can’t get enough, then it is worth thinking about nurse burnout as the cause.

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3) Anxiety, panic attacks, and depression oh MY! This is a sign for sure something is not going right in your life. It could be nurse burnout. If you haven’t experienced a panic attack consider yourself lucky! They are horrible. Mine started this year, mostly in relation to things happening outside of work, but it didn’t help with my nurse burnout. It is important for you to slow down and really find out why the anxiety, panic attacks, and depression is happening. Especially if this is a huge change for you. Sometimes there can be no specific triggers, but you need to take care of yourself regardless. It just might mean taking a break, talking to a counselor, or medication. Whatever it takes to take care of you!

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4) Sickness, sickness everywhere! Are you getting sick more than usual? This is a big sign from your body telling you something is wrong. Stress over time can run down the immune system which will leave you getting sick all the time. I noticed I would get colds all the time. One would end and another would begin. It was miserable! If you start noticing you’re getting sick a lot see your doctor of course, but you might want to reassess the stress in your life also.

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5) Has your family used terms like mean and irritable to describe you? Maybe some other colorful language! Well, personality changes can be a direct result from nurse burnout. Sometimes your family and friends are the first ones to pick up there is something not quite right. I remember my son asking me if I had a good day or bad day at work, every-time I got home. I asked him why he does this, and he said he could tell my mood was changing, and if I had a bad day he didn’t even bother to ask me something. That was a wake-up call! Especially, when I started having more bad days than good!

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6) You absolutely dread going to work. We all have days where we don’t want to go to work. I am talking so much dread you can’t sleep, or you fantasize about running away. On my way to work one time I drove by an airport. I thought to myself, I could totally buy a one-way ticket to just about anywhere, and get out of work. Of course, I went to work, but it made me realize, wow! I need a change!

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7) Feeling under appreciated is also a common sign. Some of this is normal, but when it gets to a point were your feeling more underappreciated than happy, it could be nurse burn out. Nursing is a thankless job. When we do get a thank you it’s awesome. Or if someone tells you your a great nurse, wow! Maybe, even those compliments are going in one ear and out the other. Because you’re burned out, you focus more on the negative and the positive you miss! This could also be a red flag that you are in or heading for nurse burnout. Of course, it does take some examining, because it could just be the work environment your in. Either way, some assessing, and change could need to take place.

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I hope some information was learned about nurse burnout and how to recognize the symptoms. Nurse burnout should not be ignored because the symptoms and warning signs will just increase. It is my hope for you, that you catch it early and take care of yourself. We need good caregivers and in order to keep them, we need good caregivers taking care of themselves. That was a long hard lesson for me to learn!