Great Holiday Gift Ideas for Nurses

The holiday season is here and many of us are caught up in the hustle and bustle of the holidays. It can be hard to know exactly what to get your co-workers. But if you are a fellow nurse, you know that those “nurse knick-knacks” are probably not on their list. Fortunately, we’ve got some great ideas that will even make the crankiest supervisor crack a smile when he/she unwraps your gift.


Manicure/Pedicure – Now it is easy to get this gift for someone who gets their nails done regularly, but why not get it for someone on your gift list who doesn’t usually get their nails polished and who could use a little pampering? If you’ve ever been to a nail salon, you know it is more than just picking out what color they choose to polish your nails. Giving this gift means someone gets a full hour to relax and they leave looking terrific. It’s the perfect gift to give that busy mom nurse or new nurse you know who is always on-the-go.


Coffee Mug w/Treats – Anyone can give a coffee mug, but what makes this gift special is giving your fellow nurse their favorite “with coffee” treat that they love to enjoy. It could be a cookie they indulge themselves in on a good day. Or a chocolate they’ll buy occasionally. Most nurses you know will be generous and share any treats they receive, so be sure you give them a big box or package of treats that can be passed around to the group and they’ll still be able to enjoy some themselves.


A Really Good Read – A very busy nurse I once know loved to read books every chance she got. Of course she was too busy during her shifts to read, but on her days off, she was known to read one or even two books in a day. You probably know a nurse or two like this, who simply can’t resist a really good read. Giving a bookstore gift card can sometimes be the best gift because then they can pick out a book they haven’t read. Or ask if they’ve got a book in mind they’ve been longing to read & go pick it up for them!


The Gift of Laughter – This is a great gift to give any nurse, as we know sometimes the days can be long and sometimes they can be stressful or tense. Any nurse could use a good laugh at the end of the day. Get tickets to your local comedy club and have a Nurses Night Out after the holidays. Or get them a DVD of their favorite TV series like Seinfeld, Friends or The Golden Girls so they can giggle and laugh while changing out of their scrubs.




5 Tips for Surviving the Holiday Season for Nurses

The holiday season is here and many facilities and units are having holiday parties and “Secret Santas” to exchange gifts. You may also want to buy a special gift for that co-worker who has always been there to lend an extra hand or kind ear, or something thoughtful for your supervisor to wish them a Happy Holiday Season. You may be preparing to attend the hospital ball or another holiday party during this time. It is important to understand how to handle all of these situations – as they are workplace situations and not just holiday ones.


Tip #1: Buying holiday gifts in the workplace can be tough. It isn’t like buying gifts for family and friends, where you likely know everything about their likes and dislikes. Certain gifts in the workplace may be frowned upon; some workplaces do not encourage co-workers to give alcohol during the holiday season (champagne or other spirits for New Year’s Eve for example). So it is far easier to stick with a “safe and workplace-friendly gift” than to choose something that may inspire a conversation with your supervisor or Human Resources.


Tip #2: Follow any gift giving guidelines set by your unit, department or facility. Some workplaces have guidelines in place about gift giving. They may say that participation in the “Secret Santa” is voluntary and this is the only gift giving that will be done. Or your department may decide to set a dollar amount on a gift exchange. Or you may even decide to forego gifts and donate to charity or focus on buying gifts for your children for the holidays. Be sure to follow the guidelines that are set by your department as this can avoid any hurt feelings or disappointment.


Tip #3: Showing a little Holiday Spirit is good for workplace morale – too much is a cause for concern. If your hospital has a winter or holiday ball or your department or unit has a holiday party, it is quite helpful that you make the effort to go unless you are scheduled to work. Attending a holiday party can feel like “forced” entertainment and admittedly, this is how a lot of people feel about this type of gathering because it is not like socializing with close friends or family. But if you go, you have an opportunity to connect with people who work in other departments, those who are in positions much higher than you and to wish everyone a Happy Holiday Season. This is the perfect time to make a favorable impression on the people you work with – not the time to perfect your “electric slide.”


Tip #4: Sometimes the holidays aren’t easy, but it is critical that you care for yourself. Nurses work in a caring profession, taking care of others. You probably will come into contact with patients who are having a tough time with the holidays. If you are having a tough time with the holidays, this may not make the holidays feel any easier for you. During the holidays do what you can to give yourself a little extra “TLC.” Take a few hours, just for yourself and see a movie you’ve wanted to see or do something fun. Try to laugh everyday. Get proper nutrition, exercise and sleep. Seek out professional help and your caring friends if you need more.


Tip #5: The holiday season is the perfect time to think of those who need your help the most. Many try to do charity work or donate to charity during the holidays. As a nurse, time may be precious to you but there are still things you can do. Consider donating your old winter coat to a coat drive so someone will stay warm this winter. Donate food to a food drive. Donate a children’s toy to Toys for Tots or your children’s unit of the hospital. Sometimes doing something for others during the holiday season can be the very best thing to do during the holidays!