How to Avoid Loneliness on Your Travel Nursing Assignment
Perhaps one of the most exhilarating and scary parts of travel nursing is starting a new job in a new location, alone. There are endless activities to do on your days off, like wine tasting, hiking, hitting up a local farmer’s market or a new restaurant. Some travel nurses enjoy the time alone, others don’t. As an extrovert myself, I can understand the latter.
We are social creatures. So it’s normal to feel lonely regardless if you are an introvert or an extrovert. Below are some ways to avoid loneliness on your travel nursing assignment.
Yes, this is the Bumble dating app. Here’s the twist, you can change the settings to Bumble BFF so you can search for friends! It’s simple. You create a profile, list things you enjoy doing, swipe left and right on potential friends, message your matches, and meet up to hang out.
Before working at PRN Healthcare, I lived in Minneapolis. This was a brand new location and I knew nobody. I wanted to share a little bit about my personal experience here in hopes of inspiring you to get out of your comfort zone and try new things! I used Bumble BFF and chatted with ladies who also were new to the area and looking for companions. I ended up meeting two life-long friends on this app. We spent the majority of our time together going to breweries, attending yoga classes, and playing dominoes.
Join Facebook Events
Avoid loneliness on your travel nursing assignment by logging into Facebook! Facebook has an awesome section called Facebook Events. This is like a giant calendar of events near your location. You can RSVP on Facebook and Facebook will remind you when the event is happening. Some events are free while others you may have to buy a ticket for.
Back when I lived in Minneapolis this was an easy way to hear about fun events that were happening in the city. I attended events where I did free yoga at a brewery, painted my dog at an art studio, attended a bluegrass festival, and enrolled myself in a cornhole tournament.
Facetime or Skype
The beauty of living in a digital world is the ability to stay connected with others no matter your geographical location. Your friends and family are just a tap away! Avoid loneliness on your travel nursing assignment by staying in touch with loved ones. They will help combat loneliness and give you an open ear to chat about your feelings, a new Netflix show, or just to catch up.
Put Yourself Out There
We know this is easier said than done. You only have so many weeks in your new travel nursing contract location, so you might as well make the most of it! If you connect well with some co-workers, invite them over for dinner or a board game. You never know the lifelong friendships that can occur from just one invitation.
Visit Places That Encourage Social Interaction
There are many awesome activities you can do that can act as an icebreaker between people. This may include activities like taking an organized tour, attending yoga class, watching a comedy show, drinking coffee at a local cafe, and dining in areas with communal seating – like hibachi. These activities not only allow you to do things you enjoy, but you meet new people by doing it!
Don’t Fear Going Solo
There are a ton of fun events happening, go and enjoy even if you are alone. The wonderful thing about travel nursing is getting to experience new sights and activities on your days off. Don’t feel lame if you go and enjoy these sights and activities by yourself.
In Minneapolis, I used to go to cafes a lot by myself just to try the latest latte flavor and to read or work. Just being around other people versus sitting in my apartment made a huge difference. If there was ever a fun event that my new friends couldn’t go to, I would go by myself. I learned to appreciate my own company and also bloomed into an even more outgoing person than I already was during this time.
Wherever travel nursing takes you, remember to live in the moment and to push yourself out of your comfort zone! If you follow these tips, you’ll leave your new contract after 13 weeks feeling fulfilled and with new memories and adventures!