What to wait for Or Why it’s a good idea to skip that morning run
So that test that pushed me back a semester in nursing school? Took it for the LAST TIME. And got a smooth 93%.
I also actually went for a run this morning. And you know what? Even at 5 am, it is still too hot in this city.
So with that segue, if you’re just starting nursing school, it may not be the best time to begin a new diet or exercise regime. Or even to quit smoking. It’s actually a terrible time to quit smoking.
Because, seriously, there is so much to cram into your noggin, especially the first few semesters, you don’t need the added strain. Your entire lifestyle is going to undergo huge changes just by being where you are. Changing the way you eat or quitting smoking or beginning regular exercise (especially if it is the first time you’re trying something like this), those are all hard. But it’s also very tempting, especially when you learn about how sick you can become just by living the way you are. Really and seriously though, it’s best not to give in. Your instructors should back me up on this. Now is not the time. Have I emphasized that enough?
And now, perhaps a few reasons?
- It’s stressful to quit smoking, you get grumpy and have to learn how to deal with normal stress differently than you used to and you have the added stress of watching yourself to make sure you don’t accidentally have a cigarette. ON TOP OF NURSING SCHOOL.
- Changing the way you eat is tough. It can be expensive, at least in the beginning till you stock up. If you are cutting calories, which is usually the reason for changing diet/eating habits, it’s stressful and sometimes hard to find foods you still like and learn how to prepare them and monitor your intake and, and, and… Food is tough and many changes in the way we eat are associated with guilt. ON TOP OF NURSING SCHOOL.
- Trying to begin running or daily yoga or training for a triathlon or something along those lines could be awesome, but also expensive. And time intensive, both because of the time for workouts and also because of any research you need to do looking into gyms, finding jogging paths or learning to use new equipment. And again, there is a lot of guilt associated with exercise and how you do or don’t do. ON TOP OF NURSING SCHOOL.
It’s hard enough to learn how to Nursing School as it is. It is a good idea to wait, at least until your final semester, to begin taking on any serious personal changes that happen outside of school. That’s what I have done and it seems to be working well. By the time you get to your final semester, you’ve figured out how your program runs and how you best function while going through it. Nursing school now is your lifestyle and it should be OK to add or subtract the elements you want from other aspects of your life.
For nursing school alone, here’s a list of changes I’ve had to make: go from waking up at 8 am at the earliest to waking up between 4:30-5 am four days a week, read ~1,000 pages a week of nursing texts, intimately touch people I don’t know and not be awkward about it, eat breakfast at 4:30-5 am four days a week because I may not be able to eat again till 11 or 12, eat breakfast at all, go to bed by 9 pm some nights instead of 12am because it can actually be kind of hard to wake up that early without sleep, stop spending time with my family, stop spending time with my friends, really prioritize and organize the time I do have, learn how to study effectively.
So if you’re just beginning or only a little way in, go ahead a focus on school. Give yourself a break in other areas of your life. In the bits of free time you have left over, it’s probably more important to focus on your relationships outside of nursing school anyway. I mean, eventually, you will graduate and wouldn’t it be nice if some of your old friends were there to help you celebrate?
I mean, I haven’t made it to the end yet, but when I do get there, I imagine there will be all KINDS of wild celebration!