A Nurse’s Day Off: What Nurses Really Do When They’re Away from the Hospital

by | Aug 30, 2013 | Nurse Humor | 0 comments

A personal guide to those precious, precious hours away from the hospital and a nurse’s day off.

A Nurse's Day Off: What Nurses Really Do When They're Away from the Hospital

A Nurse’s Day Off

After hours and hours running from patient rooms to the supply room, to the nurse’s station, all while answering call after call, chatting with everyone under the sun, having some time away is a wonderful thing. But, what does it actually look like when nurses are away from the hospital?

What do the elusive and mysterious creatures that we call nurses do on their days off?

Let’s discuss a nurse’s day off.

Step 1 – Sanitize

I think 2-4 scalding hot showers should do it.

Maybe 4-7 if you encountered any c. diff, bed bugs, or klebsiella.

nurses day off

Step 2 – Sleep

9-11 hours will be sufficient.

Do keep in mind that the first 2-3 hours will be haunted by telemetry monitor alarms and IV pumps.

nurses day off

Step 3 – Coff-eine administration

This is necessary to fully awaken from a deep, deep slumber.

There is a standing order for 16 oz PO coffee; may administer another dose if ineffective after 30 minutes.

Do not exceed 900 oz in 24 hours.

nurses day off

Step 4 – Devotionalize

When “just another day at work” can consist of people dying, it’s important to bring your brain back to what matters most, however that looks to you.

Being humbled and thankful on a daily basis helps keep priorities straight, maintains sanity, and keeps you from constantly wearing grumpy pants.

nurses day off

Step 5 – Laundry

Remember all those gross things you did at work?

Are you picturing it?

Are you picturing emptying that JP drain with all those clots in it?

Are you picturing pulling out that chest tube and it almost splattering all over your arm?

Wash your clothes, like, now.

nurses day off


Step 6 – Nap

Aren’t you tired again yet?

nurses day off

Step 7 – Put on something without an elastic waistband

When you basically wear nice pajamas to work, it can be easy to simply not wear pajamas.

Scrubs at work. Pajamas at home.

It’s good for the mind and body to remember you’re a human outside of the hospital, and one of the easiest ways to do this is to put on your regular non-jammie clothes.

nurses day off


Step 8 –  Do something not hospital related

Do anything.  Just don’t go for a walk… you already walked three miles at work yesterday.

A leisurely sit, perhaps?

nurses day off

Step 9 – Exercise

Remember that cake they brought in for someone’s last day?

Or the carry-in yesterday where everyone brought in all that delicious food that you ate way too fast during the 3-minute break you got after not eating for 8 hours?

Moving your body in a way you enjoy (walking in nature, a workout class, a run) is so good for your body and soul. Especially if Mr. Walrus is your workout bud.

nurses day off

Step 10 – Go to bed early

Because you’re probably back at work early tomorrow morning again, right?

nurses day off

Some fun nursing resources

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Hi, I’m Kati.

Kati Kleber, MSN RN is a nurse educator, author, national speaker, host of the FreshRN® Podcast, and owner of FreshRN® – an online platform created to educate, encourage, and motivate newly licensed nurses in innovative ways.

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