Creating work-life balance with a different work schedule

Creating work life balance

Which do you prefer: three 12 hours, five 8 hour shifts, or anything in between?

When I transitioned to my nurse practitioner role and changed from working three 12 hour shifts to five 8 hour shifts, I thought working five days a week was an awful schedule. I couldn’t imagine working that many days a week when for years I “only” worked three days a week.

I ended up greatly missing days off during the week but was glad for more consistency. I am a creature of habit and feel less stressed with a more routine work schedule. It seems my work-life balance is actually better with a consistent schedule. I am not spending my days off catching up on household tasks because I can manage completing these tasks in the evenings. I don’t have to worry about reminding my husband to pick up the kids from daycare because I was at work. I don’t always have to coordinate child care on the weekends my husband and I both work. I had more energy and time in the evenings to make supper, do a few household chores, and spend time with my kids.

I also developed a morning routine. I am definitely a morning person and my morning routine is a powerful factor for how well my day goes. I wake up about 1 to 1.5 hours before my family. This power hour is my time to journal, workout, or leisurely drink my coffee without rushing to work. And sometimes it is the only time I have to myself all day.

I have been able to adjust with less days off during the week and actually prefer the consistency.

There are so many different work hours in healthcare and I would love to hear your current schedule and what you prefer! Comment below and let me know what hours you are working and what you prefer.

Erica D the NP is a family nurse practitioner and burnout coach. Erica created The Burned-out Nurse Practitioner to help overwhelmed APRNs create work-life balance, overcome nurse practitioner burnout, and advocate for themselves. The Burned-out Nurse Practitioner offers online courses, coaching, and support. Learn more at

For time management and charting tips, check out The Nurse Practitioner Charting School– The one stop for all documentation resources created specifically for nurse practitioners. Learn more at

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