'Tis the season for creating new memories with loved ones. It's also a time to spread joy, and there's no better way to do so than by volunteering. Whether you're dishing out a hot meal at the homeless shelter or donating toys to the less fortunate children in your area, there are so many gracious ways to give back. Plus, volunteering doesn't only have a positive impact on the lives of those you're helping, it can also be incredibly humbling and beneficial to your own well-being and transfer to a wholesome, fulfilling career. This holiday season, set aside some time to give back to the community. Here are a few ways volunteering can make you a better travel nurse:
a renewed passion for nursing
Nursing is a taxing career. Throw traveling into the mix and it can feel like you're always working or on the go. By spending time volunteering, you regain your energy and focus and even acquire a new perspective on your job outlook, according to Dan Richmond, BSN, RN, CMSRN. "There's research that shows that if you feel tired, going for a walk will give you more energy," Richmond told American Nurse Today. "The same can be said of volunteering. And if you're feeling stressed or burned out, it can give you a new perspective and renewed passion for your day job."
use your leadership skills and natural initiative
As a nurse, you have a natural knack to take charge. By taking on a volunteer assignment, you can showcase leadership skills and take initiative in making a difference in the community. This can help you channel your inner leader and get you back in the swing of backing other nurses who need assistance or guidance in the workplace. Jennifer Taylor, RN, told American Nurse Today that nurses are natural role models, and showing initiative by volunteering should come as second nature. "I feel like volunteering is a civic responsibility," she said. "As nurses, we are trusted and looked at as role models of health and wellness and experts in prevention, so we should be sharing our knowledge."
A new meaning in life
If you feel like you're in a rut, whether it's emotionally or creatively, volunteering can give you the push you need to feel passionate and find new meaning in life. There's no better opportunity for soul searching than by walking a dog from the nearest shelter or making Christmas cards for Alzheimer's patients. Creating a joyous memory for others will help lift your heart and spirits as the year comes to a close.
Travel nursing is a career that takes dedication. If you're feeling lost or burnt out this holiday season, look for volunteer opportunities in your assignment destination. This is a simple solution that can help you gain your focus back for the new year and remind you why you began this career journey in the first place.