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Emotional and Physiological Processes and Positive Intervention Strategies

ISBN: 978-0-76231-057-9, eISBN: 978-1-84950-238-2

Publication date: 17 December 2003


This chapter proposes a more holistic approach to understanding work stress by incorporating eustress, the positive response to stressors. We begin by casting the study of eustress as part of a contemporary movement in both psychology and organizational behavior that accentuates the positive aspects of human adaptation and functioning. We discuss the development of the concept of eustress, and provide extensive evidence, both psychological and physiological, for the purpose of developing an explicit construct definition. An exploratory study of hospital nurses is presented as an initial test of our holistic model of stress. We conclude by asserting that there must exist a complement to coping with distress such that rather than preventing or resolving the negative side of stress, individuals savor the positive side of stress.


Nelson, D.L. and Simmons, B.L. (2003), "EUSTRESS: AN ELUSIVE CONSTRUCT, AN ENGAGING PURSUIT", Perrewe, P.L. and Ganster, D.C. (Ed.) Emotional and Physiological Processes and Positive Intervention Strategies (Research in Occupational Stress and Well Being, Vol. 3), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 265-322.



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