Peer-To-Peer Support: What This Looks Like In Nursing

Posted on: 21 September 2017

In every job, it helps if you have one other employee who is on your side and helps you through the tough days and the stress. That is no less true of nursing, which is extremely demanding both physically and emotionally. Nurses are several times more likely to quit their profession within the first few years of graduation, and much more likely than most other careers to have mental breakdowns. They also suffer from Alzheimer's as the age, a result of years of stress producing too much damage to the cells in the brain. Ergo, nurse health coaches have emerged to help. This is what the new face of peer-to-peer support looks like in nursing.

The Nursing Coach IS a Nurse

The nice thing about a nursing coach is that he or she IS a nurse. He/she is not someone who just knows about nursing and the demands of the job. More often than not, the nursing coach is also someone you work with who has taken extra courses in counseling. When you need to talk about the demands of the job or something that was really traumatic, the nursing coach schedules regular appointments for you to talk. He or she also helps guide nurses that feel lost in their careers towards a more fulfilling work and personal life.

You Can Vent and Bounce Ideas off of the Nursing Coach

Sometimes you just need to vent. You need to bounce ideas off a peer or someone else who is a really good listener. You are not looking for advice; you just need to get stuff off your chest. That is what the nursing coach does. If you do happen to need problem resolution with another staff member, the nursing coach can help you figure out the best approach to discuss this with the other staff member.

You Feel Like You Are Completely Losing It

You would not be human if you did not think that you are going crazy at least once in your nursing career. All nurses have been there. What you do with this feeling is up to you, but it benefits you and the entire nursing team if you take time off and/or discuss things with a trusted nursing coach. Maybe you need an extended break, in which case you have an advocate in the nursing coach. He or she can talk to the head of nursing and urge the head of nursing to give you some much-needed time off.