What to Do With Your NP Life in January

Have you pledged to find a 'new you' this year? Or, maybe you're not about all of the New Years resolution hype? Whatever your preference, you've got to step it up from time to time both personally and professionally to keep life from getting stale and yourself from becoming blah. I, for one, have decided that my 2019 goals begin on Monday, January 7th because, well it's still sort of a holiday week (and there's a lot of chocolate left in my house). If you aren't sure where to start your 2019 refresher, here are a few suggestions for brightening your nurse practitioner life up in 2019. 

1. Discover a Motivational Podcast 

Pump up your daily commute with motivation or education. There's nothing like arriving at the clinic or hospital having already accomplished some brain enrichment. Professional podcasts whether they be motivational or clinical (like these podcasts for primary care providers on-the-go) are a great way to encourage you to get from point A to point B as a nurse practitioner and not to lose sight of your goals. I'm with you in this endeavor as I'm a novice podcast listener but I'm told that the following are fantastic professional development options; Lead to Win, The School of Greatness, Goal Digger. Let me know your recommendations! 

2. Clean Out Your Workspace

I'll be the first to say that showing up at work in the morning as a nurse practitioner can be a total drag. Patients are waiting. Nurses have questions. There's a pile of prescription preauthorization paperwork strewn across your desk. Critical lab values demand patient callbacks. There's little to no time to sip your coffee and filter through your inbox at a relaxing pace. Improve your am disposition by controlling what you can - workspace clutter. If you're happy about the appearance of your surroundings, your day's likely to get off to a much better start. In my experience, throwing things away is the best way to start any organization project. Next, check out these 9 ways to make your workspace less depressing

3. Find Mid-Day Respite

The nurse practitioner workday (and even more so the work week) can be long and unrelenting. If you're maxed out, stressed out or burnt out, it's time to find a mid-day respite. Create something to look forward during the workday. Whether you prep a delicious lunch that you'll actually enjoy, decide to eat outdoors and take in some fresh air for a change, or plan to call a friend to reconnect over your lunch break, find something small to look forward to that gets you through the day and breaks up the monotony of your routine. 

4. Delete Social Media Apps - Just Do It 

I recently took this step and I have to say it's really de-cluttered my day and helped me to spend my time more intentionally. I'm able to ignore the noise of others around me and focus on what's important. I'm more present when I spend time with my toddler. I chat more with my husband. And, I somehow feel less pressured by life in general. I have more control over my mood, thoughts and time. Give it a try - even just a week - and see what you think. 

5. Read a Book (With a Glass of Wine?) 

Another step I plan to take this month is to trade book reading for screen time in the evening. I'm two nights in to the new habit and love it. My evenings are far more relaxing reading a book rather than watching Netflix. Not to mention, I've discovered some interesting and educational picks so far. Whether you choose a nurse practitioner career building book (a handful of options here), a medical journal or dive into an easy-to-read fiction (these beach reads can translate to in-front-of-the-fire options), cuddle up on the couch this winter with a glass of wine (or two), power down electronics and go back to the basics. You just might find the routine a relaxing refresher. I highly recommend getting started with this healthcare-related page turner about a Silicon Valley scandal - I couldn't put it down! 

How do you plan to refresh your routine in 2019?