Combating Stress in Healthy Ways

If you’re anything like me, you get stressed very easily. I know that the majority reading this may be stressed due to nursing school. So here are some personal ways that I like to deal with my own stress, and hopefully, one of them might spark your interest and help you conquer not just your stress but your anxieties.

My first suggestion is to start balancing your time. Timing is so important, and if you are able to manage your time and set yourself a schedule, you will have less stress and anxiety. But I’m not going to bore you with those details when you can easily go check out Nightingale’s two blogs about time management. Read Time Management Part 1. Read Time Management Part 2.

My second suggestion is volunteer work. It makes me feel good about myself that I’m helping out where there is a need. There are plenty of places in the community that are looking for a helping hand, like St. Anne’s Homeless Shelter (801-621-5036), or Safe Harbor Crisis Center (801-660-6104). It’s amazing what volunteering can do for your soul.

hot-yogaThe third option I would recommend is an obvious choice- exercise. Exercise is known to get those “happy” endorphins flowing. Plus, it gets you looking good. Let’s be honest, we ALL feel better about ourselves when we are working out regularly and eating healthy. Take your aggression and stresses out on a punching bag or a good cycling class. Lifting weights always makes me feel more powerful and more in control, which is great for me because sometimes in life I feel like I’m utterly out of control in certain situations. I also love doing yoga after work, especially hot yoga. It gets out all of those toxins and relaxes me for bed time.

Lastly, one of my all-time favorite ways to soothe my nerves and unwind during a stressful time in my life is to work in my yard. This might sound weird, but I LOVE pulling weeds. There is something therapeutic in pulling up all of the ugly things to make room for the pretty things. I guess it’s kind of like a metaphor for me in that I try to do the same thing with all of the negativity in my life- weed it out. I like to grow things by my own hand and create life where there was none. There are so many rewards to it- delicious fruits and vegetables and beautiful flowers. Growing your own produce can go hand in hand with your new exercise routine.

I hope nursing school on top of regular life isn’t stressing you out too much, but if it is, try to find healthy outlets that let you vent and relax. There are many activities that you can do to give your mind a break from hectic schedules and life mishaps. Don’t forget, you WILL get through this, and you WILL succeed. Take on that attitude, and you can do anything you put your mind to.

Author: Amanda Shoemaker

A Student Experience

Seranor DeJesus“I’m writing to let you know about the very wonderful and educational experience I had at Salt Lake Regional Medical Center during my last two clinicals.  I should start by saying that the experience I had while working there for two days solidified all of my desires to become an ICU nurse.  I have had two clinical experiences, one on January 26th and the other on January 29th.  Both of the experiences were AWESOME, VERY EDUCATIONAL, and VERY REWARDING!!!  I apologize for the excessive use of capitalization, but it is the only way to get my point across about how much I enjoyed these two clinical experiences.

Let me start by saying the nurses in the ICU/Telemetry unit were so supportive.  I was assigned to a registered nurse, Mila, in the early morning hours on my first clinical at SLRMC.  My nurse had not arrived to the department yet, so another registered nurse offered to let me shadow her while I waited for Mila to arrive.  A couple of other nurses offered to let me assist/observe as they performed morning cares to patients in that critical environment.  After Mila arrived that morning, she immediately received report and started to work.  She let me perform so many of the clinical procedures/cares throughout the day, and I was surprised at how much I had learned in class, labs, SIMS, and from my instructors.  Mila tested my knowledge of medications, labs, and procedures, which was very helpful.  She gave me the opportunity to perform cares and administer medications, rather than just having me watch her all day.  It was a great first day, and I was super excited to share what I had learned during our post-conference.

The second clinical experience was just as wonderful as the first.  I was assigned to the ICU/Telemetry unit once again, but to a different nurse. Lauren arrived that morning, and immediately made me feel comfortable with her and the rest of the staff.  After her morning coffee, which I’m told is vital to working in the ICU, she received report.  We started with medications and cares, and again I was allowed to perform many of the cares and medication administrations I had learned at school.  The day went by so quickly that I lost track of time, and needed to be retrieved by my fellow students for post-conference. I can’t believe how much I have learned in the past 10 months, and I was thrilled to have the opportunity to put my newly-learned skills into practice.  Thanks again for everything you do in getting these awesome learning environments lined up for us students.”

Seranor DeJesus

How to Manage Your Time in Nursing School, Part 2

As discussed last time in How to Manage Your Time in Nursing School, nursing students have a hard time juggling school, work, and personal time. And in order to have balance in your life, you need to find balance in your scheduling.

Challenge
Try this for the next week, look at your schedule, and find out what your scholarly plans look like. When are your classes? In what order are your assignments due? Do you have tests or quizzes coming up? If you need to, work in the reverse. For example, if you think you need to dedicate 4 hours to study for an exam that is coming up, plan on studying for an hour a day starting as early as 4 days leading up to the exam date. There is no need to study for 4 hours all in one day – you’ll wear yourself down by doing so.

Finding that Balance
It is ridiculous to think that you can go to work, school, and study without some leisure time. You need to allow yourself breaks, so that when you do get back to work, school, or studying you don’t go completely crazy. Allow yourself time to do what you want for at least an hour every so often. Your brain needs those breaks, so that you can retain more information when you study. Just remember, don’t over-do the leisure time. If you need to use a planner, phone, or computer for scheduling, do so. This will ease the stress of trying to figure out when you have time to do everything.

Staying Healthy
In college, the first thing that seems to go is sleep, and the lack of sleep is more damaging than you may realize. Lacking sleep can throw your mental, physical, and emotional health out of whack, and your stress levels will increase. Also, keep up on eating healthy and staying hydrated. Just a hint: The more colorful your plate is when you are eating, chances are the healthier it is. Take time to exercise 2-3 days a week for at least half an hour. Your health is the most important thing to worry about when it comes to life, so making it a priority will benefit you in more ways than one.

Inside Glimpse from a Nightingale Student
We asked our student ambassadors for their intake on time management, and this is what Ashely D. responded:

“I spend about 30-35 hours a week studying. I think the recommended time is 2 hours of studying for every credit hour you have. I do not study every day, the way I plan my schedule is I work 12-14 hours Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, and no studying. Then I work about 3-4 hours Tuesday and Thursday. I study Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday for long periods of time, but that is how I prefer to study. I do not benefit from studying for short periods of time every day. I am single and have no kids, so it is easier for me to work this way than it may be for others. I, also, seek out help from my fellow students, like we work together on study guides for exams so we can study from each other’s information rather than having to find all the information on my own. I also have help from my family and friends. For example, my dad comes over every week and does my lawn work.
I do not set a time limit on anything graded, I take however long it takes to finish the assignment and do the best I can. I prioritize my studies by order of due date. I do whatever is due first and worth the most points then move on from there. Usually discussion board posts do not take that long, so if I have a test coming up I study for that first then do the discussion boards last.

My job is very flexible because I set my own schedule, so I do have those open days (Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday, and Sunday) where I shift my schedule around to accommodate surprises. I think it is always best to try your hardest to do things ahead of when they are due that way when surprises arise you are not scrambling to figure out how you will work issues out. It’s always helpful to notify professors if you do have a surprise come up that is not school related to see if they will allow you extra time to turn in an assignment rather than tell them after the assignment has already been due.
It was recommended to me by ‘Mr. H’ to always have one day of rest where you look at nothing related to nursing. I do not think it is necessary to study everyday but at least set aside a little time every day to make sure you know what is coming up in the course, check canvas for updates, etc. Studying for long periods of time 4 times a week is what works best for me.”

 

Additional Sources
In addition, Nightingale College offers the Total Life Care (TLC) program and is available to assist in personal difficulties that might affect the quality of life. This program is a benefit to students and their families. They cover time and stress management, child care, home buying, college tuition, marriage and family struggles, etc. And if you still feel unsure about how to better manage your time, feel free to speak with our Student Services Department for more tips on how to manage your time.

Student Services may be contacted by phone at (801) 689-2160 and by email.

Daniel Jensen – Student Services Advisor, djensen@nightingale.edu

Amanda Shoemaker – Assistant, Student Services, ashoemaker@nightingale.edu

Happy Managing!

Author: Mackenzie Whitten (Administrative Assistant, Operations)

DIY Valentine’s Day

If you’re anything like me, you love Valentine’s Day. This day represents the one thing this world needs more of: love. Love for friends, family, even pets. But after the holidays, I am literally broke. Hence, do-it-yourself gifts are given to my husband, family, and friends. I feel that they enjoy a hand made gift from me even more than a store bought gift. So here are a few suggestions to get you jumping on the DIY train. Side note: these gifts are great for men and women, boys and girls. They can be given to your kids or parents. Valentine versatility … that was my vision while looking for gift ideas. Hope you agree!

The first idea I wanted to share is a frame that you can write little love notes on for your significant other. It’s an “I love you because” theme, and personally, it is one of my favorites. I’d stick this in the bathroom for my husband to see when he wakes up in the morning. Just to put a little extra pep in his step. Who doesn’t want to see a little love message first thing in the morning? I really like that it’s on the little frame, it looks classy and cute. You use a dry erase marker to write your note, then you can easily erase it at the end of the day, and write another one for the next day. Super simple, inexpensive, and thoughtful. Check it out by clicking here.

Valentine 1

The next idea is a jar full of nice little notes for your honey. I like that the person in the article mentions that she picks out of it when she’s having a bad day, and it instantly brightens her mood. We all need a little pick me up here and there. I would personally do a mason jar and maybe tie some burlap ribbon around it, just to make it cuter. Maybe even a little lace. I love the country look of mason jars, burlap, and lace (probably because I’m from Texas). Take some time to personalize it, and have fun with it. Then all you have to do is write little love notes, jokes, or Bible verses – whatever your heart desires. I’d keep mine in the kitchen so I could pull one out to read while I am drinking my nighttime cup of milk. This gift is so easy to make and it carries through long after Valentine’s Day. Check it out by clicking here.

Valentine 2

The last option for you is obviously cookies. You can’t have Valentine’s Day without a little sugar. These are some of my favorite cookies, so trust me, because I am the champion cookie taster of the universe. No, but seriously, these are delicious, and you can use any flavor of jam you like. I love the heart shape of them, too. You can wrap them up in fun bags and finish off with a curly ribbon. These would be cute to send to your kids’ teachers, give to your hairdresser, or your favorite person in Student Services (hint hint). No one refuses these cookies. And they’re so easy to make. Double win in my opinion. Check it out by clicking here.

Valentines Cookies

Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to be super expensive. If you look back through the history of Valentine’s Day, it was customary to give little handwritten cards. I personally love the idea of handmade gifts. It means so much more to me than anything you can buy in a store. It’s all about trying to figure out what to make. I hope this has given you some fun ideas to show the ones you love that you care for them. And I hope you have a very happy Valentine’s Day.

Author: Amanda Shoemaker

 

September 2014 Graduation: Valedictorian Address

2 Major Announcements by Nightingale College

Nightingale College was invited to appear on Channel 4’s Good Things Utah. During the segment, Nightingale College’s CEO, Mikhail Shneyder, announced two major accomplishments:

#1 Nightingale’s nursing program has become a fully accredited nursing program through ACEN.

#2 Nightingale has announced its BSN program is starting.

The College was also recognized for being #3 in UTAH for first time pass rates on the NCLEX exam for ADN Programs. This is an outstanding accomplishment and shows the quality of education delivered by the College to its students. Watch it:

Nightingale’s Nursing Program is Now FULLY ACCREDITED by ACEN!

Nightingale College is proud to announce that its Associate Degree Nursing (ADN) Program received an initial accreditation grant from Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN) through 2019. In addition, the College’s institutional accreditor, Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (ABHES), renewed the College’s accreditation grant through 2018. Congratulations to all!

Flame! Forward!

Mikhail Shneyder, RN, President and CEO

Nightingale College thanks all the amazing individuals that brought about this final programmatic accreditation status.

WE DID IT!

How to Manage Your Time in Nursing School

There is always one thing on a nursing student’s mind- how am I going to get everything done with so little time to do it in? Well, this blog hopefully will help you to know how to better manage your time.

How to Overcome Procrastination?

What is procrastination? It is where you decide to fulfill a goal and you postpone doing the things that are needed to fulfill that goal. Most people procrastinate because of fear, and it’s fear of multiple things; fear or failure, fear of rejection, fear of commitment, fear or success, ect. Many find procrastination to be rewarding at first, but eventually the procrastination will reach higher levels then it had before. To overcome procrastination, you need to not only make specific, realistic goals to achieve, but you need to find balance in your life.

There are 3 areas of your life that need to be balanced: school, work and leisure. If you have a feeling of accomplishment or satisfaction in these 3 areas, then you are probably balancing them pretty well. If you have any negative feelings, or feeling like you do not have enough time for even one of these subjects, then you will need to re-examine how much time is spent on each subject, and then re-balance each subject. This blog post will give you suggestions and hopefully help you feel calmer in your every day life.

Pie Graph – Balancing Your Time

Linda Wong, a former professor at Lane Community College, suggests that you design a pie graph and identify how much time you spend on each subject. Now, each individuals diagram will look different, but generally if you are balancing your time equally, it should look something like this:

Pie Graph - Balanced areas of life

If your pie graph does not look like this, then you need to re-evaluate where you are spending too much or too little time at, and then adjust your schedule accordingly. This is known as the “Increase-Decrease method” If the pie graph does not work for you, try to write a list of all the activities you are needing to do that day and how much time you should spend on each activity.

Suggestion: Aim for half and hour increments at a time for each project you write down. Listing them out this way will make it seem more achievable. Also, keep a planner or a schedule on your phone or computer, this is a good way to make a list of all your activities for each day.

Goals of Time Management

There are 4 goals of time management that you should

always aim for, they are:

  1. Strive for balance: As stated above, make time for study, work and social time. Balance in these areas will keep the stress levels down a notch and bring you a feeling of gratification.
  2. Create Patterns: Study for a class the same day that you have that class, so you can better focus on one subject rather then on 5 or 6. Also, try to plan your studying time when you have the most energy during the

    day. And, whenever possible, try to manage all of your activities around the same time every day so you know exactly how your day is going to be planned out.

  3. Include time for your personal goals: Make a list of all of your personal goals that you want to achieve while planning out studying and work time. Accomplishing your goals will help you to feel a sense of relief. When it comes to your personal goals, make them realistic. If it’s a big project that you want to get done, break it down into smaller tasks

    until the entire project is completed.

  4. Establish good health habits: Eat healthy, nutritious meals. drink plenty of water, and shoot for between 7-9 hours of sleep a night. Sleep deprivation will slow the thinking process and will minimize how much you retain from your studies.

These are just a few suggestions to help you better manage your time. If you’d like more information on time management, visit Study Guides and Strategies.

In our next blog, we will be interviewing a

few students to get their intake on how they balance life between school and personal life. Hopefully, this will help you to find out what works best for your schedule.

Happy Planning!

Reference: Wong, L. (2000). Essential Study Skills (Third Edition). Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

Nightingale’s Nursing Program Successfully Passes ACEN’s Stage II

Nightingale College announced back in January that the Associate Degree Nursing (ADN) Program hosted a successful site visit for the Accreditation Commission for Education in Nursing (ACEN). ACEN site evaluators recommended the program for initial accreditation for a 5-year term. Members of Nightingale’s administration attended step 2, Evaluation Review Panel (ERP), and have reported the College passed stage 2! The final step, the Board of Commissioners Meeting, July 10 – 11, 2014, will take place in Atlanta, Georgia. The College will receive the final decision letter in mid-August 2014.

Nightingale College thanks all its staff, students, graduates, and community partners that contributed to the ongoing success of the nursing program!

May 2014 Graduation: Valedictorian Address