You Better Have Fun!

The workplace can be a stressful place to spend eight to twelve hours every day. Perhaps we should remember to have a little fun at the same time!


You Better Have Fun!

According to recent statistics, the number one reason for nurses leaving their jobs is not what you would guess. It has nothing to do with rotating shifts, working weekends or holidays. It has nothing to do with work overloads, under staffing or being forced to float to unfamiliar hospital units. Nurses resign primarily because of issues with coworkers...either they don't get along with their counterparts or personalities clash to the point of making work (and life) miserable. If the workplace is not a positive and enjoyable atmosphere in which to work, nurses will move on. It seems to be grounds for turning in resignations. Remember that we often spend more hours in the day with coworkers than we do with our own families. Eight hours (or twelve as the case may be) is an inordinate amount of time to be unhappy.

To survive and thrive in nursing involves more than just making it through a shift. It incorporates feelings that we have made a difference in the lives of others. It means that we are able to go home feeling good about ourselves and the work we have done. And if we happen to have a little fun along the way, all the better! There's an old song that says "love makes the world go round", but so does laughter and comradery. Nursing management would do well to take that advice to heart! Staff turnover is incredibly costly. Orienting new nurses is the least cost efficient way to spend resources. Retention of staff is the key.

As nurses, we must also take some responsibility to assure our workplace is a pleasant and nurturing environment in which to work. Uplifting one another, supporting one another, and arriving to work with a positive attitude is imperative. Granted, we like to think of ourselves as the epitome of health care professionals, yet our personal lives are sometimes complicated and hectic. Is it possible that we often take things too seriously and forget to laugh?

As dyed in the wool caretakers of humanity, it often feels as though we are in charge of the health and well being of not only ourselves and our families, but of the entire world and its inhabitants. No wonder we feel bogged down at times! Nurses deserve to have a friendly and happy atmosphere at work. If we find that isn't the case, perhaps we need to be the one to address the issue at the next staff meeting.

A few well thought out suggestions to turn things around may be all that's needed. Coworkers will thank you for your bravery and willingness to "step up to the plate" as long as it is done in a positive way.

Work will always be work, but there is absolutely no reason it can't be fun once in awhile. And unless those statistics are lying, we better have fun! Or else!

As an RN, author and inspirational speaker, I speak to nurses and nursing students across the U.S. on the topic of "Nurses Can Make the Difference." I am passionate about the nursing profession and have learned through my years in nursing, that people have many more similarities than differences. We all want health, happiness and safety for ourselves and our loved ones. With that in mind, we can become better nurses and better people.

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Specializes in Oncology&Homecare. Has 27 years experience.

My first job was in a speciality hospital in NYC. I worked with the most wonderful nurses on the planet. We had as much fun as you could have on an incredibly busy unit. My co-workers were not the reason I quit. It had to do with working 12 hour shifts, working nights and having 4 nurses to 42 extremely sick patients. I lasted 5 years full time and limped along part time for my 6th and final year in a hospital setting. It was a great learning experience. I loved most of my co workers but I would never go back. It was physically grueling and emotionally draining.:nurse: