La Prensa MedicaISSN: 0032-745X

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Investigating the Relationship between Self-Compassion and Occupational Stress of Nurses Working in Hospitals Affiliated to Tehran University of Medical Sciences in 2017

Introduction: The effect of occupational stress on quality of life and job performance of nurses necessitates the management of stresses in the workplace. Self-compassion is one of the main constructs in this regard, which in turn has attracted much attention as feature of resilience to stress, burnout, and emotional exhaustion in recent years.

Objective: The aim of this study was to determine the relationship between self-compassion and occupational stress among nurses working in hospitals affiliated to Tehran University of Medical Sciences in 2017.

Method: The present descriptive-correlational cross-sectional study was conducted on 430 nursing staff working in hospitals affiliated to Tehran University of Medical Sciences. The subjects were selected using stratified sampling, with appropriate allocation to the number of nurses employed in each hospital. The data collection tool was long 26- item form of the Self-Compassion Scale (SCS-LF) and a standard occupational stress questionnaire (Gray-Toft and Anderson, 1981). Data analysis was performed using descriptive and inferential statistics in SPSS ver. 16.

Findings: The majority of nurses (60.5%) had a moderate degree of self-compassion and high occupational stress (69.3%). The results of Pearson correlation test showed that there is a statistically inverse significant relationship between occupational stress and self-compassion (P<0.001), as well as all of their dimensions, with the exception of dimensions of “common humanity” and “conflict with physicians” (P<0.001). In other words, increased self-compassion level leads to a decrease in nurses’ occupational stress and its dimensions.

Conclusion: The results of this study revealed a reverse relationship between self-compassion and occupational stress of nurses; therefore, policymakers and nursing authorities can take strides in moderating nurses’ level of occupational stress and improving their professional performance by improving their self-compassion skill.

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