Year of the Healthy Nurse: Happiness
We’ve reached the eighth month of the American Nurses Association (ANA) Year of the healthy Nurse campaign, and the theme for August is something we can all relate to…Happiness. Finding happiness at both work and home can be the key to a healthier life and a more productive workplace.
Healthcare organizations nationwide are taking the need to create a more joyful work environment seriously as levels of clinician burnout are reaching new highs. The effort to understand what factors are causing the burnout and diminished joy in the workplace is exceedingly important to reverse the trend and create a more purposeful, empowered, and engaging work environment. Throughout the month of August, the ANA and other healthcare industry leaders will be promoting the creation of happier work environments and providing resources to help nurses and other clinicians explore ways to find happiness outside of work also.
The Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) has recently published a whitepaper describing a framework for improving joy in the workplace. The goal is to help organizations undertake a system-wide effort to not only restore a sense of joy in the workplace, but also demonstrate how that leads to improvements in the quality of care, the patient experience, and staff engagement. Additionally, the American Journal of nursing posted the results of a study on ‘Nurse Burnout’ highlighting ways to restore joy to the nursing profession.
All ANA members are invited to join the upcoming webinar called Therapeutic Laughter: Creating a Mirthful Environment. The online session is being held on Wednesday, August 16th at 1:00 p.m., and it is free for ANA members who sign up here.
Healthy happiness in your life is more than just finding joy in your work. Balancing work and home is something we should all be striving for every day. To that end, Year of the Healthy Nurse: Happiness resources includes understanding what happiness is and ways that we can control our own happiness. For example, only 10% of our happiness is determined by circumstances, while almost half is dependent on our thoughts, actions, and behaviors. This is important as happy people have lower rates of heart disease, stronger immunities, faster healing after being injured, and are more likely to maintain a healthier diet.
There are several tried and true ways to increase your level of happiness. Some keys to happiness are cultivating strong relationships with friends and loved ones, try new things and experiences when you can, and recognize the opportunities you have by being in a position to help others, being grateful for those opportunities and for what you have in life can be a powerful counterbalance to negativity.
Here are five quick ways to jumpstart your happy dance:
- Reach out to someone and thank them for something they did for you. Make a call, send an email, or even a text message. Gratitude is a mood booster.
- Spend 5 minutes doing something that will brighten someone else’s day.
- Make the time to have a meaningful conversation with a friend or loved one.
- Find an opportunity to spend a minute helping someone in need. Not a patient, because you are already doing that.
- Make time for a brief reflection on a happy memory from your past. Reliving special moments in life will always bring a smile to your face.
We want to hear the things that you do to bring joy into the workplace? How do you balance work life and home life? Share your thoughts or experiences in the comment section below, or join us on our Facebook page.