One of the major perks of getting your BSN is that nurses are almost always in high demand. People get sick every day of the year, and hospitals need a steady crew of nurses to care for these patients. One of the downsides, though, is that nurses often have to work on holidays, including Christmas Day. Although it can be disappointing to be away from your family on one of the most important holidays of the year, you can use some of these strategies to make your day more enjoyable.
1. Celebrate with your family at a time when you are not at work. Move your celebration to Christmas Eve or save some special traditions for when you get home from work in the evening. At the same time, though, don’t hesitate to let your family participate in some fun activities while you are at work. They should still be able to enjoy Christmas, even if you aren’t there for every part!
2. Wear something festive to help celebrate the holiday as you work. Of course, you need to follow your job’s dress code, but you may be allowed to wear a Christmas-themed pin, holiday scrubs, or a Santa hat on Christmas Day.
3. Play Christmas carols at the nurse station on your floor or in your break room. Let each nurse working on Christmas suggest a few favorites to put on a playlist for you all to listen to during the day. Don’t be afraid to sing along with your favorites!
4. Arrange a Secret Santa gift exchange with the other nurses working that day. If you won’t be able to open gifts at home with your family on Christmas morning, you can at least open a gift or two at work! A week or two before Christmas, write each nurse’s name on a slip of paper and draw names. Set a price limit and decide whether you will get one big gift or several smaller items to open throughout the day.
5. Talk to your patients about their favorite Christmas traditions. They are probably even more disappointed than you are to be spending Christmas Day, in addition to the surrounding days, away from home. Remember the reasons that led you to become a nurse and keep these in mind as you interact with patients on Christmas.