The lived experience of emotional wellness in acute care registered nurses

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Montana State University - Bozeman, College of Nursing


Emotional wellness is not defined in the nursing literature. Instead, a great deal of effort is placed on defining stress, burnout, and compassion fatigue from a quantitative perspective. This study uses Nola Pender's Health Promotion Model (HPM) as a guide for defining emotional wellness, and applies Streubert-Speziale's ten-step method of analysis of qualitative data to define emotional wellness from the interviews of five acute care registered nurses (RN). Results indicate that four factors, Boundaries, Balance, Self-Awareness, and Support, define emotional wellness. Future research is suggested to further define emotional wellness, and its principles should be explored further in nursing research, education, and leadership and management to determine its long-term relevance and applicability to the nursing profession. Ultimately, the definition of emotional wellness is intended to benefit all nurses regardless of professional role or setting by reflecting the common emotional needs of all within the profession.




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