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5 Ways Healthcare Professionals Prep For The Holiday Season

5 Ways Healthcare Professionals Prep For The Holiday Season

The holiday season is a busy time of the year, both for shoppers and healthcare professionals, but for different reasons. While people outside of the hospital pack the malls, fill their shopping bags, and prepare to feast on the delights the season has to offer, doctors and nurses scramble to make sure the sick stay alive. If you’re a healthcare professional, here are five ways you can prep for the holiday season.

Accept and Embrace the Time of Year

Having your cellphone nearby and remaining on high alert is part of being a healthcare professional during the holidays. It might seem aggravating and annoying when you have to run off in the middle of a holiday dinner to tend to your healthcare responsibilities, but that’s part of your job. Instead of fighting it and fussing, accept the realities of your situation and embrace them with a positive attitude. Take heed in the fact that you’re helping someone else out. After all, that’s why you got into the profession in the first place, isn’t it?

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Prepare As Much As Possible in Advance

If you know you’re on the list of people who will have to work during the holiday season, try to plan and prepare in advance so you can make the most of your time at home with your loved ones. Just because you’ll be tending to sickness and injuries on the traditional day of celebration doesn’t mean you can’t reserve another for spending time with your family. The holidays are all about gathering around the dinner table and enjoying each other’s company. It doesn’t matter which day you choose to do this, as long as you do it.

Don’t Let the Moment Bring You Down

Chances are you’re going to encounter some sad situations while working throughout the holiday season, especially if you work in a critical care unit or the emergency room. This infographic about common holiday accidents illustrates some of the more prevalent ways people end up at the hospital during the holidays. Although it’s the holiday season and some situations can seem overly sad and depressing, you need to remain calm and remember that this is all just a part of your job. Take a deep breath and drive on.

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Throw a Staff Holiday Party

No, not a Christmas party, but a holiday one that includes people of all backgrounds and religions. There’s no doubt that the holiday season is stressful for everyone working in the hospital environment, whether you’re a doctor, nurse, or an employee working in medical records. Reserve a day (or night) where your department can take a load off and enjoy each other’s company. While spending the holiday season with your family and close friends is optimal, doing so with your coworkers can also be rewarding because they understand how you feel.

Take Advantage of Other Holidays

While this isn’t necessarily a direct way to prepare for the holiday season in December, you should still try to make the most out of holidays at other times of the year so you don’t feel so drained during the major one. Whether it’s gathering around a turkey feast for Thanksgiving, celebrating fourth of July with a plume of fireworks, or taking a beach vacation to celebrate the end of summer on Labor Day, make sure you treat yourself a couple other times during the year so that when things get hectic around the new year, you’re ready for it.

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OK, so when you were in med or nursing school they told you about what you’d have to deal with during the holiday season, right? Well, remember that you chose to work in this profession even with the all stresses it comes with. Remember to reassure yourself that you were meant for this job and that nothing can get in your way.

Are you a healthcare professional? How do you plan for the holidays? Leave a comment below and let us know.

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Last Updated on July 10, 2020

How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

We all have them—those hurtful, frustrating, offensive, manipulative people in our lives. No matter how hard we try to surround ourselves with positive and kind people, there will always be those who will disrespect, insult, berate, and misuse you if we allow them to.

We may, for a variety of reasons, not be able to avoid them, but we can determine how we interact with them and how we allow them to interact with us.

So, how to take control of your life and stop being pushed around?

Learning to set clear firm boundaries with the people in our lives at work and in our personal lives is the best way to protect ourselves from the negative effects of this kind of behavior.

What Boundaries Are (And What They’re Not)

Boundaries are limits

—they are not threats or ultimatums. Boundaries inform or teach. They are not a form of punishment.

Boundaries are firm lines—determined by you—which cannot be crossed by those around you. They are guidelines for how you will allow others to treat you and what kind of behaviors you will expect.

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Healthy personal boundaries help protect you from physical or emotional pain. You may also need to set firm boundaries at work to ensure you and your time are not disrespected. Don’t allow others to take advantage of your kindness and generosity.

Clear boundaries communicate to others that you demand respect and consideration—that you are willing to stand up for yourself and that you will not be a doormat for anyone. They are a “no trespassing” sign that makes it very clear when a line has been crossed and that there will be consequences for doing so.

Boundaries are not set with the intention of changing other people. They may change how people interact with you, but they are more about enforcing your needs than attempting to change the general behavior and attitude of others.

How to Establish Boundaries and Take Control of Your Life

Here are some ways that you can establish boundaries and take control of your life.

1. Self-Awareness Comes First

Before you can establish boundaries with others, you first need to understand what your needs are.

You are entitled to respect. You have the right to protect yourself from inappropriate or offensive behavior. Setting boundaries is a way of honoring your needs.

To set appropriate boundaries, you need to be clear about what healthy behaviors look like—what healthy relationships look like.

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You first have to become more aware of your feelings and honest with yourself about your expectations and what you feel is appropriate behavior:

  • Where do you need to establish better boundaries?
  • When do you feel disrespected?
  • When do you feel violated, frustrated, or angered by the behavior of others?
  • In what situations do you feel you are being mistreated or taken advantage of?
  • When do you want to be alone?
  • How much space do you need?

You need to honor your own needs and boundaries before you can expect others to honor them. This allows you to take control of your life.

2. Clear Communication Is Essential

Inform others clearly and directly what your expectations are. It is essential to have clear communication if you want others to respect your boundaries. Explain in an honest and respectful tone what you find offensive or unacceptable.

Many people simply aren’t aware that they are behaving inappropriately. They may never have been taught proper manners or consideration for others.

3. Be Specific but Don’t Blame

Taking a blaming or punishing attitude automatically puts people on the defensive. People will not listen when they feel attacked. It’s part of human nature.

That said, you do not need to overexplain or defend yourself. Boundaries are not open to compromise.

Sample language:

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  • “You may not…yell or raise your voice to me…”
  • “I need…to be treated with respect…”
  • “It’s not okay when…you take things from my desk without asking…”
  • “I won’t…do your work…cover for you anymore…”
  • “It’s not acceptable when…you ridicule or insult me…”
  • “I am uncomfortable when…you use offensive language”
  • “I will no longer be able to…lend you money…”

Being able to communicate these without sounding accusatory is essential if you want others to respect your boundaries so you can take control of your life.

4. Consequences Are Often Necessary

Determine what the appropriate consequences will be when boundaries are crossed. If it’s appropriate, be clear about those consequences upfront when communicating those boundaries to others.

Follow through. People won’t respect your boundaries if you don’t enforce them.

Standing our ground and forcing consequences doesn’t come easily to us. We want to be nice. We want people to like us, but we shouldn’t have to trade our self-respect to gain friends or to achieve success.

We may be tempted to let minor disrespect slide to avoid conflict, but as the familiar saying goes, “if you give people an inch, they’ll take a mile.”

It’s much easier to address offensive or inappropriate behavior now than to wait until that behavior has gotten completely out of hand.

It’s also important to remember that positive reinforcement is even more powerful than negative consequences. When people do alter the way they treat you, acknowledge it. Let people know that you notice and appreciate their efforts.

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Final Thoughts

Respect is always a valid reason for setting a boundary. Don’t defend yourself or your needs. Boundaries are often necessary to protect your time, your space, and your feelings. And these are essential if you want to take control of your life.

Start with the easiest boundaries first. Setting boundaries is a skill that needs to be practiced. Enlist support from others if necessary. Inform people immediately when they have crossed the line.

Don’t wait. Communicate politely and directly. Be clear about the consequences and follow them through.

The better you become at setting your own boundaries, the better you become at recognizing and respecting the boundaries of others.

Remember that establishing boundaries is your right. You are entitled to respect. You can’t control how other people behave, but you do have control over the way you allow people to treat you.

Learning to set boundaries is not always easy, but with time, it will become more comfortable. You may eventually find that boundaries become automatic and you no longer need to consciously set them.

They will simply become a natural extension of your self-respect.

Featured photo credit: Thomas Kelley via unsplash.com

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