Coping Skills & Tuning Out


Hi Everyone,

As a BSN Student, I know I'm not the first person to ever feel like they're struggling to cope with stress and tuning out negativity, especially from my fellow classmates. I'm an older student, yet feel like I have such thin skin by absorbing every negative comment (sometimes even intended to be helpful advice) that comes my way. It doesn't help that I can be my own worst enemy. Often times, I feel guilty when I try to be assertive or feel stupid when I speak up. Not surprisingly, I tend to struggle with this outside the classroom: coping with various, difficult things in life in a healthy way. My guess is a lot of this is tied to issues with confidence, but I know my ability to cope better with the words & behaviors of others is vital in order for me to be the excellent nurse I want to be: one that can let the petty things that don't matter roll off her back. To be happy with who I am as a person and as a nurse while simultaneously being open-minded to learning and growing.

I've read up on stress busters from healthy eating, yoga, working out, drinking plenty of water, sleeping, catching up with friends, self-esteem building, et cetera. I guess I'm looking for something more; maybe something needs to change internally - - maybe fully realizing & understanding that I should not feel lonely or alone in my moments of self-doubt. That it's a very human experience, but with practice & patience, I will get to where I want to be (:

Specializes in Gerontology RN-BC and FNP MSN student. Has 23 years experience.

I had to incorporate my faith life into my school stressors. It is my story that works for me. Not everyone has a faith life but I couldn't imagine life without it.

I use power verses and bring those to rememberance when my emotions want to go the opposite way. Also the book the battlefield of the mind by Joyce Meyers helped me too.

You have to pick and choose what you allow to affect you, maybe carry a journal and write your stuff down every time you need to. Then leave it in the book, refuse to consciously allow yourself to carry it in your spirit.

Best wishes, you seeking to change maybe the change itself! Good luck. ?


7 Posts

As a soon to be graduate, I feel your pain. I, too, am too receptive of these things, allowing the negativity to pierce my atmosphere and cause me to doubt myself relentlessly.

One thing I've learned is that finding a resolution to conflict -- whether between others or within yourself -- is understanding what motivates people, or yourself, to act or feel a specific way is a huge step in attempting to correct the problem. You already said that using "stress busters" is ineffective, that maybe you need to change something internally. Understanding yourself enough to identify this possibility is the first step.

Try to apply the nursing process to it. (Dreadful, I know, but you devote your time and efforts to helping others in this way, why not view your own problems from the same professional perspective?) Assess and diagnose; Identify your weakness. What is affecting you, how does it make you feel, and how are you responding to it? If it's something you're afraid of, ask yourself WHY you fear it? Plan and implement; how can you approach the problem differently? How can you look at your stressors in a different way? Is it outside your control? If so, then stop worrying, because worrying will not change the outcome. If you can change it, then get busy working on that change. Or perhaps instead of thinking that someone else's negative comment is a reflection upon YOU and your inadequacies, consider that it is more a reflection upon THEIRS. Evaluate; how does changing your perspective help your work through the problem? If it doesn't, then you know to get to planning again.

I hope that wasn't a crappy response, but essentially, I think this is something internal you have to work through somehow. You didn't specifically state what the issue is, just that you feel stress and you have difficulty coping. Find support, if you can, from friends and family. Don't necessarily seek advice, but just know that they are behind you. Simply knowing you aren't alone can be helpful during stressful times. Looking at the bigger picture can be helpful if you're stressing about the details in your life -- like your grades, where you're at job or relationship wise.

As a BSN student, you're just at the very beginning. You have an entire career with hundreds of options before you. Look at each obstacle as a little, inconvenient road bump on your journey to where you ultimately want to be in life. Stress feels like crap, but it's only temporary.

Hope I helped a least a little. Good luck to you


35 Posts

What a beautifully-written post :) Thank you so much! WOW!

I'm working on a care plan right now - - genius idea to apply the nursing process to myself! Who would've thought?! Thank you from the bottom of my heart; this means so much to me.