nurses4wellness blog.

Blessings or Burdens? November 2010

Dear Fellow Nurse,

I was devastated when my hospital nursing career was cut short because of a severe allergy to latex. I had worked as a registered nurse at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston for 12 years when my allergist told me it was too risky to continue working in a clinical setting.

To be honest, back in 1994, I could not imagine any good coming of this situation, but it has. Professionally, this change prompted me to earn a master’s degree and start my own business. On a personal level this life-altering event sparked me to learn healthy ways to de-stress and take better care of myself.

In the spirit of the Thanksgiving season, I have been taking time to reflect upon my life with gratitude. Sure, there are times when I still miss working as a hospital nurse. Then I remind myself of all of the positive experiences and wonderful people who have now entered my life because of that change.

Adopting an attitude of gratitude can greatly reduce your stress and help you cope with life’s challenges. Try these simple techniques to help you and your loved ones keep the spirit of Thanksgiving alive year round.

Be well,

Janet Fontana, RN, MA

Burdens or Blessings?

Have you ever stopped to think about what life would be like without some of the daily

“hassles?” At first thought, you may think that life would be wonderful without them. Well, what if you didn’t need to:

• Stand in a grocery line because you had no money

• Drive in holiday traffic because you had no family or friends to visit

• Get up early to go to work because you were laid off

When you bring a sense of gratitude into your daily life, you can dramatically reduce your level of stress and see your life in a more positive light.

Gratitude Research

Expressing gratitude is a simple technique that can bring a big boost in health and happiness. In numerous studies research shows that when people express gratitude they:

• Exercise more regularly

• Report fewer physical symptoms

• Feel better about their lives

• Are more optimistic about the upcoming week

• Make more progress toward goals

• Report higher levels of alertness, enthusiasm, determination, attentiveness, and energy

• Are more likely to help others

For information, click here

Practicing Daily Thankfulness

There is no one right way to express gratitude. Most importantly, your practice should evoke a positive feeling and remain fresh.

• Keep a gratitude journal

• Ask each person at the dinner table to say something for which they feel grateful

• Share a moment of gratitude with your significant other before falling asleep

• Offer a prayer of gratitude

• Write a letter of thanks to someone who inspires you

• Start your day by feeling thankful for another 24 hours

De-stress and Earn CE Credit

While the holiday season can bring much happiness, it can also be a busy and stressful time.

Watch “How Mind-Body Techniques Relieve Stress” CE webinar to learn how you can rebalance your nervous system and restore your energy in just 15 minutes a day.

Instantly receive your CE certificate with our one hour webinars.

Inspirations for Gratitude

Movies

• “The Blind Side” 2009

• “Slumdog Millionaire” 2008

Books

• “Angela’s Ashes” Frank McCourt

• “Simple Abundance” S. Ban Breathnach

Songs

• “Kind and Generous” Natalie Merchant

• “Soak up the Sun” Sheryl Crow

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