18 Inspirational Quotes For Burned-Out Nurses

This article was republished with permission from SCRUBS Magazine.

We all know them. We’ve all worked with them. And I’m willing to bet if you’ve been a nurse for more than a handful of years, you may have experienced that doom-like feeling of being burned out.

You could probably use a pick-me-up. We all could once in a while. Here are some inspirational quotes to lift your mood after a tough moment or shift.

18 inspirational quotes for burned-out nurses

1. “After all, tomorrow is another day.” (Scarlett O’Hara,Gone with the Wind)

2. Today, you’re not the patient.

3. “Life is like a game of cards. The hand that is dealt you represents determinism; the way you play it is free will.” (Jawaharlal Nehru)

4. “I think we should follow a simple rule: If we can take the worst, take the risk.” (Dr. Joyce Brothers)

5. “A door must either be shut or open.” (Anonymous)

6. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.

7. “In not making the decision, you’ve made one. Not doing something is the same as doing it.” (Ivan Bloch)

8. “Trust your gut.” (Barbara Walters)

9. “Example is not the main thing in influencing others. It is the only thing.” (Albert Schweitzer)

10. Growing old beats the alternative — dying young.

11. “Life is change. Growth is optional. Choose wisely.” (Karen Kaiser Clark)

12. “If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always gotten.” (Anonymous)

13. “You will miss 100% of the shots you do not take.” (Wayne Gretzky)

14. Happiness is a choice.

15. “When everything has to be right, something isn’t.” (Stanislaw Lee)

16. “Better to bend than break.” (English proverb)

17. “Be miserable. Or motivate yourself. Whatever has to be done, it’s always your choice.” (Wayne Dyer)

18. When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile. ?

Care to add to the list? What inspiring words do you have for a fellow nurse who needs them? Share in the comments section below.

This article was republished with permission from SCRUBS Magazine.


  1. How about: “Will work for food as a nurse.” “Have kids, gotta work.” Have to do it, gotta do it, can do it.” “Every day has to end some time.”

  2. I’m 73 years old, retired. Worked as a Floor Nurse abroad. I have keep myself adept in my field of profession,
    ethical,FAIR. To Quote;

    ” Proper Documentation is the best gift we can give to our patients and family “

  3. I am not a nurse but an MA. I work in oncology research. I am the person who works the long hours to make the deadlines. I am the person who is here first in the morning and last to leave at night. I am the one here who stays after people just get up and walk out and quit. I am the one who gives her cell phone number to her patients so if they have a question or emergency after hours or over the weekend will answer your call and get you help. I am the one who gets you your lab results. I am the one who you would rather have your blood drawn by because I can almost do it in my sleep. I am the one who will hold your hand and give you a hug. I am the one who never forgets a name or a face or a grandchild or an event. And yet this week as the gifts were being handed out at work to the Nurses and MA’s PA’s and NP’s for national Nurses Week I was the one who was forgotten. I know I am not a nurse I have been reminded by some of our past nurses. but I can tell you when those nurses needed help I was the one.

    • You sound like a person who has made a tremendous difference to those who truly needed you. Admin and others may not see that but that scared pt that needed your steady hand and knowledge needed YOU. They don’t care what letters you have after your name. They just care that you cared for them. God bless you.

    • Oh BL I am so sorry. I hope these were young immature nurses because I can tell you I would never have forgotten you if I had worked with you. Your job is a very hard one and you are part of the team. You should have been included. My heart goes out to you.

  4. To the World You may be One Person, But to One Person You may be the World.
    This has helped me and other staff to put in perspective what we are here for
    as we care for others. Focus on what we can do, not what we cannot. Patients
    are people and come to us at the peak of stress in their lives. In minutes we can ease
    that stress by acknowledging them, not the task we are going to be doing. We must show
    them that they are what we care about even when we are in a time crunch. Connecting person
    to person and the rest will happen in time.

  5. YES! I agree completely. I would add:
    1. respect and understanding of the stressors to which nurses are subjected on an hourly basis;
    2. Recognition and acceptance that nurses can not provide the quality of care with fewer nurses than necessary to care for an increasingly larger number of sicker patients;
    3. Health care benefits all of society. The healthier people are the more that they can work and contribute to society and the less welfare the government needs to pay.
    Nurse cost money because they are worth it.
    To administrators; nurses deserve a good salary if you want good patient care, do deal with it.

  6. The most ridiculous thing I ever read here! It is not inspirational quotes that are needed, but;

    1. Decent working conditions
    2. Shorter work days
    3. Meal breaks for real
    4. Decent salary for the work put in, and extra for night shifts etc
    5. A nurses union working in the best interest of the nurses
    6. Serious counselling when needed.

    … just to mention a few. Florence Nightingale is dead! Nursing is a qualified profession and and should be rewarded accordingly.


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