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How Mindfulness And Meditation Can Help Nurses Thrive

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How Mindfulness And Meditation Can Help Nurses Thrive

The nursing profession can come with challenges like sleep difficulty, stress, and exhaustion. Mindfulness and meditation can help.
How Mindfulness And Meditation Can Help Nurses Thrive

What is Mindfulness?

Mindfulness is the capacity to be entirely present, with full awareness of present surroundings. It is the ability to push out irrelevant thoughts and circumstances not part of the present. While everyone has the capability to practice mindfulness, it takes mental effort and training to become skilled in the technique.
Practicing mindfulness will help you become more self-aware and in touch with your emotional, physical, and mental experiences.

What is Meditation?

Meditation is a group of techniques meant to strengthen the mind’s state of awareness and ability to hyperfocus.
While many techniques and forms of meditation exist, they fall into two primary categories:

1. Concentrative Meditation

All focus is turned toward a specific object, with the goal of cultivating your ability to concentrate when the mind wanders or enters a state of anxiety or stress. The object may be a breath, image, word, phrase, etc.


2. Mindfulness Meditation

This form of meditation uses specific techniques like mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) and mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) to decrease reactiveness to external situations and bring the mind to focus on the present. Mindfulness meditation is often successful in helping people reduce depression, anxiety, and other health issues.
How Mindfulness And Meditation Can Help Nurses Thrive

How Does Meditation Affect The Brain?

Many studies have been done on meditation and its effect on the brain with promising outcomes.
A study published in Brain and Cognition in 2016 revealed that MBSR and MBCT programs led to increased activity in the prefrontal cortex, cingulate cortex, insula, and hippocampus in stressed, anxious, and healthy participants. Additionally, the amygdala function changed showing quicker deactivation from exposure to emotional stimuli, and improved functional connectivity with the prefrontal cortex.
Based on these findings and additional studies about meditation, conclusions can be made that its practice can produce functional and structural changes in the brain that lead to improved emotional and behavioral regulation.
How Mindfulness And Meditation Can Help Nurses Thrive

How Can Nurses Benefit from Mindfulness Meditation?

It’s no secret that nursing isn’t exactly a stress-free profession. The benefits of meditation are endless for nurses.

How can mindfulness meditation help you thrive in your career as a nurse?

1. Cope mentally and emotionally with workplace stresses such as death, repeat exposure to tragic situations, critical circumstances, heavy patient loads, and lack of resources
2. Deal with and regulate emotions that prevent a state of restfulness and acceptance
3. Improve sleep patterns
4. Recognize specific triggers and deal with them individually
5. Harness focus and prevent excess anxiety from chaotic thought patterns
6. Manage difficult and rotating schedules

What Are Some Resources For Getting Started?

Fortunately, meditation is very popular and numerous apps, videos, and websites are available to help you get started. Check out the recommendations below.
How Mindfulness And Meditation Can Help Nurses Thrive
The Mindfulness App
YouTube Channels:
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