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10 Innovative Ideas for Self-Care from a Nurse


As a nurse educator, I teach students about wellness, health promotion, and disease prevention for their patients. But what many nurses fail to do is take care of themselves. Nursing can be a physically and mentally challenging job. We must learn to support ourselves before we support others. Self-care replenishes a nurse’s empathy and compassion and reduces burnout.

Self-care is not limited to nursing. We can all benefit from self-care to improve our mental, physical, and emotional health. Let’s explore simple yet powerful ways to implement self-care amidst the demands of our daily lives.

1. Sensory Meditation: Sometimes, the practice of meditation can seem intimidating. Engage in sensory meditation by focusing on one sense at a time. For example, spend a few minutes appreciating the aroma of your favorite coffee, candle, or essential oil, listening to calming nature sounds, or savoring the taste and texture of a piece of dark chocolate.

2. DIY Spa Day: Create your own spa day at home with DIY treatments such as homemade face masks, luxurious baths with Epsom salts and essential oils, and soothing hand and foot massages. Engage your partner or family members in the experience to foster personal connection.

3. Journaling with Prompts: Reflection and debriefing are important for nursing students and nurses but can also be effective for anyone. Use journaling prompts specifically tailored to you to reflect on your experiences, emotions, and accomplishments. Explore prompts related to gratitude, resilience, and self-compassion to foster personal growth and well-being. An example prompt could be, “What am I proud of myself for today?”

4. Artistic Expression: Explore different forms of artistic expression such as, painting, sketching, or photography, as a creative outlet for processing emotions and promoting self-expression. Need help figuring out where to start or what to try? There are some excellent adult coloring book options out there!

5. Dance Therapy: Incorporate dance therapy into your self-care routine by engaging in spontaneous dancing to your favorite music. Allow yourself to let go of stress and tension as you move freely and express yourself through dance.

6. Mindful Eating: Practice mindful eating by savoring each bite of your meals, paying attention to the flavors, textures, and sensations. Take time to eat without distractions, focusing on nourishing your body and enjoying the culinary experience. You could create a simple rule such as not eating in your car…or not eating from the work vending machines!

7. Laugh Therapy: Dedicate time to watch or listen to comedic content that makes you laugh wholeheartedly. Laughter releases endorphins and reduces stress, offering a natural and enjoyable way to boost your mood and well-being.

8. Nature Immersion: Immerse yourself in nature by spending time outdoors engaging in activities such as hiking, gardening, or birdwatching. Connecting with the natural world can help reduce stress, improve mood, and promote overall well-being.

9. Intuitive Movement: Practice intuitive movement by tuning into your body’s signals and engaging in activities that feel good and energizing. Whether it’s yoga, tai chi, or simply stretching, allow your body to guide you in movement that promotes relaxation and vitality.

10. Community Service: My favorite self-care practice has nothing to do with self! Volunteer your time and skills to support community service initiatives or organizations that align with your values and interests. Giving back to others can foster a sense of purpose, connection, and fulfillment, enriching your own well-being in the process.

These are a few practices I incorporate into my life and share with my nursing students. Any act of self-care can provide meaningful benefits. Remember, self-care is highly personal, so explore and experiment with different practices to find what resonates most with you.

Self Care Nurse Blog Photo Maryn Moreni, MSN, RN, CNE, has dedicated the last five years to nurturing the next generation of nurses, with the most recent two years at Arizona College of Nursing. With a rich background as a registered nurse, certified family nurse practitioner, and a certified nurse educator, Maryn brings a wealth of practical knowledge and academic excellence to her teaching. She is deeply passionate about ensuring her students not only excel academically but also embrace the profession of nursing with empathy, resilience, and a strong desire to make a positive impact on their patients’ lives.

Start Your Future in Nursing Today

Nursing School Faculty In LabIf you’re considering a career as a registered nurse (RN), Arizona College of Nursing is here to help you pursue your dream. Our BSN program enables you to earn a Bachelor of Science in Nursing in just 3 years or less with qualifying transfer credits. We’ve helped hundreds of students to earn a BSN degree and enter the nursing profession – and we’re ready to support you on your path to becoming an RN.

Why Choose Arizona College of Nursing?

  1. Earn a BSN degree in 3 years or less with eligible transfer credits
  2. Campus locations throughout the US
  3. Night classes for general education courses
  4. Hybrid Online/In-Person format for general education classes
  5. Nursing education is all we do
  6. CCNE-Accredited Program*
  7. NCLEX-RN success coaches and exam preparation class
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*The Bachelor of Science in Nursing (BSN) degree program at Arizona College of Nursing is accredited by the Commission on Collegiate Nursing Education ( All Arizona College of Nursing and Arizona College campuses are institutionally accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools (, a U.S. Department of Education-recognized national accrediting agency.