Edited by Alexander-Stamatios G. Antoniou and Cary L. Cooper
Chapter 33: Proactive Coping, Resources and Burnout: Implications for Occupational Stress
Esther R. Greenglass In recent years considerable research has focused on occupational stress. This is to be expected, given its deleterious eﬀects. Stress on the job has been linked to a host of psychological and physical symptoms. For example, Spector (1987) reports signiﬁcant positive correlations between excessive workload and anxiety, frustration and job dissatisfaction, as well as health symptoms. Work stress may also trigger anger feelings, which can result in higher levels of anxiety. The disruptive eﬀects of stress can be seen as well in organizational functioning and in interpersonal relationships. Stress and burnout are major factors that have been linked to the development of both physical and psychological illness (McGrath et al., 1989). Burnout may be deﬁned as a state of physical, emotional and mental exhaustion that results from long-term involvement in work situations that are emotionally demanding (Maslach and Jackson, 1986). Burnout is also related to selfreported measures of personal distress (Belcastro and Gold, 1983; Greenglass, 1991; Greenglass et al., 1990; Schaufeli and Enzmann, 1998). Burnout in teachers correlates positively with depression, anxiety and somatization (Greenglass et al., 1990; Bakker et al., 2000). At the same time, individuals vary in their reactions to workplace distress. Research supports the idea that personal resources can aﬀect people’s reactions to stress and burnout. Individuals who are aﬄuent, healthy, capable and optimistic are resourceful and thus are less vulnerable to work stress. When confronting stress, perceived competence, labeled as perceived self-eﬃcacy or optimistic self-beliefs, is...
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