advice for ICU<

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    I am an experienced ICU RN with a tendancy to continue to think about my job and patients and events (especially after the days we have had lately) for sometimes days. I can't sleep at times after a 3 day stretch of 12's. I have always done this off/on but since I returned to work, it seems to be worse. What do you do the truly "leave it there." I am always running through my day, wondering if I could have done something more for the patient, why my day went so wild, or how I could have handled things differently. I am somewhat of a perfectionists (I am sure I am not alone,...) Advice anyone? THX

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  2. 3 Comments...

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    Do the best you can while at work. Hand over the reins to the next person and go home.

    Easier said than done eh?

    I have learnt over the years to leave it at work.

    Once I leave my place of employment I am instantly thinking of what needs to be done at home. What to cook for dinner that night etc.

    If your job starts to over take your waking moments and thoughts away from work then maybe it is time to have a change of scenery from the type of work that you do.

    Being a perfectionist is ok as I tend to be with my job. It is the leaving it at work that needs to be worked on.

    Honestly if it is starting to prevent you from sleeping you need to find a healthier way of dealing with this.

    Talk to your collegues or someone at work that will just listen to you then give you advice.

    Is your manager a person you can speak with about this?

    When I am finished for the day I can honestly say I am focussed on my home with hubby and things we are doing together, not work.

    Hope you get some rest.
    momthenRN likes this.
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    I refused to get out of my car until I could leave work inside it. Listening to talk radio- NPR, sirius, Anything. That helped. My SO (also a critical care nurse) and I had a rule- really bad days could be discussed for 15 minutes (Had a kitchen timer for it- no joke). Then you just have to let it go and live the life you've created. Living at work is no fun and not healthy for you or anyone you love.
  5. 0
    Quote from momthenRN
    I am an experienced ICU RN with a tendancy to continue to think about my job and patients and events (especially after the days we have had lately) for sometimes days. I can't sleep at times after a 3 day stretch of 12's. I have always done this off/on but since I returned to work, it seems to be worse. What do you do the truly "leave it there." I am always running through my day, wondering if I could have done something more for the patient, why my day went so wild, or how I could have handled things differently. I am somewhat of a perfectionists (I am sure I am not alone,...) Advice anyone? THX
    I have been an ICU nurse for 5 years. Love it. Take care of REALLY sick people love it... I also have a wonderful family. I listen to REALLY loud music all the way home or talk to my non nurse friends on the way home. But, sometimes when I lay down at night to close my eyes.....my day plays over in my head...what did I do wrong, how is my pt, did they get extubated...could I have done more to get them extubated?? And on and on and on.....and I can't help it. I try to focus on other things and use relaxation techniques and read a book, take a bath...but I can't. So, I usually take an ambien or I will be up all night. So, this is not "really" any help, but to know that you are not alone even though you try and know you are being OCD. My friend (a great ICU nurse) went on medication for anxiety that helped her alot, she was having some of the same issues. But, I would try some other relaxation techniques before meds but if it interfering with your everyday life (and it sounds like it is) maybe you need to talk to your PCP for some advice. When I have other issues going on I become more obsessed about work. Good Luck and you are not alone....


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