Tag Archives: burnout

Burnout. Part Two. Me again.


I guess looking back on my pre holiday blog things were starting to get to me and probably had been for a while. So I decided to do a bit of reading and research into burnout. We tend to throw this term around quite a bit and I have discovered it can be more severe than our common use for the word when we just use it to describe how we are feeling on a bad day.

The definition of burnout is long term exhaustion and diminished interest. It can have an adverse affect on all aspects of our lives and relationships, not only our work life. Symptoms of burnout can be,
feeling physically drained,
emotional exhaustion,
lowered immunity,
pesermistic outlook and
increased time off work.
If this sounds like you then there are few things you can do.
The first thing is to
recognise your situation, which can be hard to do when you are bogged down in it.
Try to take some time out, away from the situation.
Slow down and take a break, cut back on your commitments and activities.
Give yourself time to rest, reflect and heal.
Get support from your family and friends,
share your feelings and relieve some of your burden.
Re evaluate your goals and priorities, think about your hopes and dreams.
What is important to you?
This could be a time to rediscover what really makes you happy and to set course accordingly. Find the chicken soup for your soul.
I have returned to work with a much improved attitude, a better ability to handle the frustrations that I cannot change and a renewed motivation to have a positive impact on the culture in our department. My advice to anyone feeling a bit negative or unmotivated, do yourselves and your colleagues a favour and book yourself in for some leave. I took three weeks leave and planned it so I would have a week to “myself” (and I use that term loosely, there ‘ain’t no such thing), before the kids were on holidays, I went out for coffee with a different friend every morning that first week. The kids and I then spent a week at the beach and then we had a week at home. In that week we renovated a child’s room and I got to do some spring cleaning. Call me weird but I love the feeling when that’s done. It satisfy’s those borderline OCD tendencies that decreasingly get accommodated due to being too busy.
Looking back over these lists I would have to say that writing my blog provided me with the recognition of the burnout.  It has also allowed for some reflection and some of my own self styled therapy, it is very cathartic to get it all out by writing it down. I have written more blogs than I have posted, some will never be posted but they have allowed me to vent. I have taken some time out with my friends and family. The chicken soup for my soul would definitely have to be spending time at the beach with my kids and they are ultimately the priority in my life. So focusing on the positives, nowhere’s perfect but I work in the hospital and the department that I want to be in. I work with some fantastic staff and I really appreciate all the resources and processes of our department when I spend time working in other places.
So, glad I’m feeling like me again, and I’m sure everyone else is too!
If your due for some time off, my advice, book it in, by the time you take it you might just need it.
Do you have a similar story, what did you do? I would love to hear it.
Stay safe, be happy.

Pre holiday burnout.


I really need a holiday!
I have just finished night shift, it is eight a.m and I am now on holidays. For about four weeks leading up to these holidays I have struggled coming to work everyday. I have been having serious thoughts about changing what I do. After twenty-two years of nursing, and possibly another twenty-two ahead of me. Do I really want to ever say I spent forty-four years nursing? I’m also a bit worried about what a cranky old cow I’ll be by then given the apparent “years worked in ED v’s cranky old cow ratio”. There are so many issues in nursing, in my own workplace and in my life, that I am frustrated with.  So I have been mulling over the question what do I want to do? Do I want to be a nurse somewhere else in the hospital? Do I want to be a nurse in a different setting like a clinic? Do I even want to be a nurse at all? I have looked into a couple of things, but it’s hard to search for a job when you don’t know what you want to do.
My current work issues at the moment are wide ranging, the following are just a few:-
New junior doctors with “know it all attitudes”.
Extreme paperwork overload for every patient.
Poor nursing skillmix (not enough senior nurses).
Things that change overnight, department wide with no notification.
Petty people.
Shift work.
People who think they are s#%t hot but their not.
Poor nursing care (relates to previous point).
My frustration that the Emergency department serves as the “too hard basket” for others.
No beds.
Payroll problems.
Vicarious trauma.
Illicit drug takers.
Drug seekers.
Drunk drivers.
People who take no responsibility for their own health care.
People who expect taxi vouchers but have 2 packs of cigarettes in their hand.
People who request Christmas and new year off even though everyone knows you can’t have both.
The things that currently keep me where I am.
All the fantastic doctors and nurses that I work with every day.
Working in the best Emergency Department in this state (I can’t compare to other states).
Working in the only hospital I really want to work in.
Ocassionally making a difference in peoples lives.
The effort required to be bothered applying for a new job.
The “same s#€t, different bucket” thought.
Not knowing what else I want to do.
Not wanting to go to uni again. Yet.
So right now I need to go to bed, have a sleep, have my holiday and write another blog in four weeks time and see if I’ve been cured by holidays or wheather I need to update my resume.
Have you ever felt like this about your job? Help! What did you do?
I would love to hear from you.
Stay safe, be happy.