It can be incredibly exciting to a start a new travel nursing job. You get to experience a whole new place, you may have the opportunity to advance your career and you’re likely to make a few new friends along the way as well. Of course, the thought of having to make new friends on a travel nursing assignment can also bring a bit of anxiety too. Even if you’re naturally an extrovert, with a busy, and sometimes swing or night shift work schedule that comes with travel nursing jobs, it can make things a little harder. Fortunately, with a little extra effort, whether you’re an introvert or an extrovert, your next travel assignment could bring the reward of some wonderful, long-lasting friendships.
Host a Party
You’ve just moved into a brand new place, at least new to you, so why not show it off to your co-workers and perhaps even a few neighbors by hosting a party? Make it a fun casual event by offering light bites, or asking your guests to bring one of their favorite dishes for a potluck. It’s a great way to get to know people and figure out who you’d like to spend more time with.
Check out Nextdoor.com
If you don’t know your neighbors, or only know a few, head to Nextdoor.com – it’s kind of like Facebook, but for neighbors. You can connect with others who live nearby online, and get advice for things to do, where to eat, where to shop and so on, and maybe even end up making a friend or two in the process.
Join a Group
No matter what your hobby or interest, there is probably a group for you. MeetUp.com is one of the best sites for finding like-minded people with similar interests, from walking, hiking, running and biking to quilting, dining, reading and just about everything in between.
Leverage Your Online Social Networks
There are countless travel nursing forums, Facebook groups and other sites that allow you to connect with others on travel assignments. Odds are, someone out there works in the same area you do, or knows someone who does. Keep a close eye out, and see if you can connect with one of them – you never know, you could end up going on fun local outings together, or if you really hit it off, you might even be able to travel together on your next assignment. Your own travel staffing company likely has a social media site too, another good place to connect with fellow travel nurses.
Take the Initiative and Ask a Colleague to Lunch
While it can be a little intimidating at first, don’t be afraid to take the initiative and ask a colleague to lunch, out for coffee, or even a movie. Permanent staff are often curious about healthcare travelers and the different places they’ve been, where they’ve worked and what it’s like to be one, while fellow travelers are likely to want to connect for the same reason you do. All you need to do is take the first step. If you’re friendly, smile and show that you’re interested in getting to know your co-workers, you might just find that you get a number of invitations too.