Nursing Self-Care Learning Library

ONS Self-Care Learning Library

Our lives and nursing careers have been anything but ordinary since the COVID-19 pandemic started. Drastically changing lifestyles provides an opportunity and in some cases a necessity to rethink your mental wellbeing strategies and add some self-care activities to your toolbox.

The Gratitude Symposium: Free Throughout May 2021

Please join thought leaders for a free month-long symposium in May to thank our healthcare workers.

Hosted by Quint Studer

Forty-five well-known experts are banding together to provide healthcare workers and students with a month-long series of presentations meant to thank, teach, and inspire those in healthcare. Each expert created a video from 15 to 50 minutes based on their area of expertise. This content will be available through the Gratitude Symposium website. Each weekday, one to three videos will be released on the website.

What Will Be Covered?
The Gratitude Symposium experts and partners have created a solid foundation of learnings and will deliver diverse content. You will leave feeling better than when you came in as well as well as additional tools and techniques to utilize in your job. The array of experts will cover topics including employee engagement, diversity and inclusion, employee wellbeing, creating high-performance organizations, and emotional intelligence.

View a List of Experts

Who Should Attend?
This symposium is for anyone who works in healthcare or plans to work in healthcare. Attend as an individual, team, organization or class. To make it easy to register your entire workforce or student body, please contact Nicole Webb Bodie at or 850-748-2027.

Register Now


Self-Care Digital Downloads

Download one or more of the following images to help you find a relaxing moment as you work through your day. Some ideas on how to utilize these posters are to hang in a central place on your unit, use them as a screensaver for your computer, or as a digital background for virtual meetings. We have included a post-it size (3x3) option if you would like to add it after your email signature or print and affix to a notebook or next to your computer screen.

Joy poster sample

Get the: Screensaver image; Zoom Background; 11"x17" poster; 8.5"x11" poster; 3"x3" note

Breathe poster sample

Get the: Screensaver image; Zoom Background; 11"x17" poster; 8.5"x11" poster; 3"x3" note

Happy Place poster sample

Get the: Screensaver image; Zoom Background; 11"x17" poster; 8.5"x11" poster; 3"x3" note

Grateful poster sample

Get the: Screensaver image; Zoom Background; 11"x17" poster; 8.5"x11" poster; 3"x3" note


Take some time to assess your own well-being and identify those areas in your life that you would like to mend or prioritize activities that you already know bring you joy and promote healing. If you are not quite sure what those areas are, try a variety of these methods to see what works best for you. Use the list below to help you with ideas.

Self-Care Activities

Self-Care Activity

Learn how to practice by reading this article

Practice storytelling

Using Storytelling to Hear Your Patient’s Voice

Get organized

Clear the Clutter With This Chinese Discipline

Listen to music

How Music Can Soothe Your Savage Beast-Stress


Writing for Wellness

Share a smile

The Amazing Power of a Smile


Be Honest: Are You Getting Enough Sleep?

Plan a vacation

Why You Need to Use Your Vacation Benefits



Get creative

Coloring Page

Recognize your humanness

Take These Healthy Steps to Come Back From an Unexpected Event

Set boundaries

Establish Healthy Boundaries by Using Your Inner Compass

Prioritize your time

Prioritize Your Time Amid Today’s Attention Seekers

Take care of your feet

Self-Care for the Soles


Laugh Every Day for the Health of It

Other self-care ideas:



Read/write poetry

Share a laugh

Watch a funny video

Guided imagery

Positive affirmations

Breathing exercises




Tai Chi


Make a social connection

Intuitive eating

Use a self-care mantra

Look at pictures of places that bring you joy

Write down 3 things that you are grateful for

Talk to a loved one

Practice mindfulness

Unit-based Approaches for Staff Well-Being:

Recognize a coworker

Unit pause after a difficult event

Dose of resilience

Make vision boards

Random acts of kindness

Themed lunches

Staff birthday calendar

Neck/shoulder massages

Team time with the Chaplain

Welcome bags for new grads

Bulletin boards with positive messages

Share kudos at staff meetings

Self-care champions

Start and end day with a team huddle

Gratitude tree

Take one and leave one – positive message sticky notes

Mindfulness corner

Book club

Tea for the soul

Team building


Institutional Approaches for Staff Well-Being

  1. Oncology Nurse Retreat: A Strength-Based Approach To Self-Care and Personal Resilience
  2. Self-Care Environment
  3. The Thrive Program: Building Oncology Nurse Resilience Through Self-Care Strategies

External Resources

American Psychiatric Nurses Association

American Organization for Nursing Leadership

American Nurses Association

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

The Emotional PPE Project


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