Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

The Eustress Experience of Registered Nurses: A Grounded Theory Study
by Woodruff, Richard A., Ph.D., Capella University, 2018, 120; 10823583
Abstract (Summary)

The following study explored the experiential eustress accounts of nurses within a hospital work environment. Previous literature found some level of connection between eustress and hope, self-efficacy, collaboration, resilience, and self-perceptions of health. However, the previous literature was attempting to explore and explain a cognitively appraised construct, eustress, without first gathering experiential accounts of the construct from participants. This may have altered the discoveries previously made and necessitates the following research. The current study produced data that helped to address the gap in the previous literature relevant to the guiding research question: What is the eustress experience of RNs in organizational contexts? The constructivist grounded theory method was used to answer the research question. The current study explored the experiential accounts of 12 Registered Nurses (RN) from a hospital within the Western US. All participants were RNs, female, aged 25-65 and having various experience levels (5 to 43 years). Various levels of grounded theory coding were used on the data to produce three models and a theory. The current study found that the participants explained eustress differently than the terminology used in previous literature. All accounts of eustress were directly connected to intense situations (highly stressful experience) that had positive outcomes. These eustress experiences altered the RNs in self-reported beneficial ways, ranging from enhancing confidence, resilience, and professional growth to changing motivation, altering professional perceptions, and changing how they felt about stress in general. The presence of a collaborative, open-minded, and trustworthy team was also noted as having a profound effect on participant recollections of eustress.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Jarvis, Sara
Commitee: Doogan, Mike, Vogele-Welch, Deborah
School: Capella University
Department: Social and Behavioral Sciences
School Location: United States -- Minnesota
Source: DAI-B 79/10(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Nursing, Organization Theory
Keywords: Challenge, Eustress, Nurses, Positive stress, Resilience, Stress
Publication Number: 10823583
ISBN: 978-0-438-01585-2
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