Self-Care and Self-Compassion Education for Undergraduate Nursing Students: An Innovative Approach


  • Ana Gancheva
  • Cynthia Smith-Peters


Background: The purpose of this study was to evaluate how undergraduate nursing students who have received education in self-care and self-compassion perceive stress compared to undergraduate nursing students who had not received the same education over a six-week period. Undergraduate nursing students consistently report feeling stress, anxiety, and depression. Literature shows a gap in licensed nurses practicing the self-care interventions they teach to patients Method: 45 junior year nursing students were invited to participate in the study voluntarily. A randomized control study allowed students to participate in one of two groups - a control group (where no educational sessions were provided); and an intervention group (where weekly intervention sessions regarding self-compassion and self-care were provided over a six-week period). The themes of the program included healthy eating, regular exercise, and stress-reducing interventions. Results: were measured at two periods using the Perceived Stress Scale: 1) before training was offered; and 2) after the six-week training period. The perceived stress levels of the control group and intervention were compared. Conclusion: The group that received education expressed a reduction in perceived stress levels. Qualitative data demonstrated that the intervention was beneficial, demonstrating that students had learned new tools for the management of stress.