Here you are.
In a brand new city.
In a brand new hospital.
And it hits you.
You are LONELY.
And anxiety takes over.
And you just want to curl up.
And you think
”Why did I think this was a good idea?”
We’ve all been there.
As travelers, we are constantly stepping into the unknown.
We are choosing a life of uncertainty away from home.
That comes with mega blasts of cortisol and our sympathetic nervous system may be
hanging out in fight or flight mode for a wee too long.
It needs a break sometimes.
Plus, as a travel nurse, you are in a caregiving role.
You care for people in their hardest times.
And sometimes, they sure don’t treat you with gratitude.
And sometimes, the staff doesn’t even act like a team.
So, it enters. Stress, anxiety, depression, sadness, loneliness, and a big scoop of self-doubt.
We are living our own nightmare version of “Inside Out” from Pixar!
What can we do?
Step one: Acknowledge that those feelings have come to play for a second. “What up feeling? I see you.”
Step two: Take a breath and know how normal this is. Actually, shockingly normal for those of you in the travel nurse industry. According to a 2012 report from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Interdisciplinary Nursing Quality Research Initiative, about 9% of the population suffers from depression, and that number is doubled in nurses. And… this study didn’t even take into account being a travel nurse. But we could venture to guess the number is higher yet for us.
Step three: Be grateful for sadness.
Hard times in life are not bad. Actually, they are our biggest teachers. They connect us to our heart and realign us to our internal compass so we can re-assess what is important to us. ❤️
But when you are in one of those low times. (I know.) It’s hard to feel grateful for them. So…here is a resource to help us out when life is in the “giving us lessons” season.
As a travel nurse, your happiness and mental health are essential to your successful career. But we’re changing locations every 13 weeks or so! It’s impossible to have a consistent therapist.
… or is it?
Betterhelp is what I tried for affordable online therapy while I was away from home.
Betterhelp turned out to be such a great resource. It got me through one of the toughest travel seasons of my life.
✅ It gives you unlimited therapy. I would usually do a video session one time a week and then write to my therapist throughout the week also. She always wrote back within 24 hours and many times way faster. I felt so heard and was able to process through what I was going through quickly.
✅ You can switch therapists. I did not love my first match. They made it so easy to just click a button and switch to a new one. Finding the right therapist style for yourself is crucial in your healing. Switch as much as you need until you feel great. (They have over 2000 registered)
✅ It fits all styles of communications and all types of challenges. No matter if it’s a breakup, an addiction, sexual abuse, depression or anything else someone in there is specialized in what you need. And you are in control of how to communicate. You pick if you are a face to face person (video) or voice only (phone) or a writer (chat feature).
✅ This online therapy was so much cheaper than paying for an in-person therapist!
✅ You can remain anonymous if you want.
✅ You can travel and still have a consistent person there as you are processing and working through something in your life.
Worth noting: They do not accept health insurance. But I found the price well worth it. I felt like I had a professional therapist in my pocket and for a few months. It was just what I needed!
And if all else fails. Puppies. 🙂
Wishing you joy and peace,