Nurses Who Want to Help Others Are More Likely To Feel Stressed, Study


Nurses, who have the desire to help others, are more likely to burn out on the job, according to a study by the University of Akron.

The researchers said that nurses, who enter this field for reasons other than or in addition to the desire to help others, perceive the job to be less stressful. As a result, they are associated with less burnout, better personal health, and high job commitment.

The researchers said that as females are normally characterised as being caring, nurturing, and altruistic, the desire to help others is often considered to be the "right" motivation for entering the field.

For the study, the researchers analysed survey data from over 700 registered nurses in Northeast Ohio, where 90 percent of them were white females.

The researchers also found that nurses, who are highly motivated by the lifestyle the job provides and the ability to interact personally with patients, are more satisfied with their employer and are less inclined to leave the job.

Study author Janette Dill, an assistant professor of sociology, said that normally customers do not really care about the worker's motivation for choosing a career. For example, in car service industry, clients are least bothered whether a worker chose the profession because he/she loves cars or not, they only care about making money, or simply enjoys using power tools. However, Dill said that health care is a different industry altogether.

"We expect women to go into these jobs because they love the people that they're caring for, and this is their primary motivator. If that cultural assumption can be changed, more men might be attracted to nursing and might not necessarily feel that their whole self has to be devoted to their patients - that they can value their job for other reasons as well," Dill said in a press release.

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