The weird thing is is that I felt like I saw more of my friends/family when I used to work nights. On my days off I would wake up around 3pm, get ready, and everybody would be off work by 5pm. On the other hand, I've been somewhat bored working day shift. I have 4 days off each week, and it seems like on my days off everybody is at work or my girlfriend is in school. I automatically wake up at 7am on my days off, and I'm tired by 10pm. This doesn't do well for my night life (I'm a guy in my 20's with no kids).
I also liked nursing a lot better during night shift. No family members asking you to bathe their loved ones during your admission, med pass, etc. Less procedures, more time to actually sit down and figure out what is going on with your patient. We did have our CRAZY nights where we were running all night long and had very little help on the floor. I also had days where I couldn't sleep, but for the most part I adapted just fine.
I started nights recently and find that I'm wide awake around 8 (like now)... I chugged red bull my first 2 weeks. Probably since I only pulled 3 hours of sleeping after work.
Now I treat the time as opposite. So for me, instead of it being 0900 right now, it's 2100. It's a bit harder but I like nights for now. I feel like it's a team. And I love love love my facility good luck adjusting!
I'm going to be working 7p-7a soon. I did it before, and I liked it quite a bit, but I am a little nervous about adapting again.
Any tips for maintaining a social a life, getting a good day's sleep, and functioning well on my shift?
I used to get terribly sick in the stomach on night shift. I eventually figured out that between 1 and about 5 am I had to eat foods that are easy to digest, like yogurt, applesauce, a banana, or sip on a smoothie. Definitely no meat or wheat bread! I drank plenty of water. Our digestion slows down during the night so I guess that's way. I would have a pretty big meal before the shift started and then just these types of easy-to-digest snacks during the night. I really didn't get very hungry in the middle of the night, even though awake, but needed something small. By the time I got off work, I was ready for a good breakfast.
I'm not a nurse (yet) but work in ER registration for three 12 hour night shifts a week. I have to say, I am a TOTAL night person so it was much easier than my 0730-1600 job as a physical therapist aide I had before switching.
On my work days, I come home, lift weights, and normally am in bed by 0900 at the latest (I live a half mile from work). I get up around 1730, or earlier if I wake up naturally, to eat, shower, etc.
Days off is anything goes. The first day off I usually sleep most of the day. But like I said, I'm a night person. I normally sleep until around 1000 and then stay up until around 1600 or so, take a nap, then when I wake up stay up until 0400 or so. This is obviously on the days I don't have other committments (dance, class, volunteering, etc).