Author Topic: (Abs.) Coping w/MS from perspective of Stevan E. Hobfoll's theory of conservation of resources  (Read 126 times)

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Offline agate

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Some investigators in Poland are using this theory of conservation of resources as described by the applied psychologist Stevan E. Hobfoll as a way of looking at methods of coping with MS. It would be interesting to know more about the two strategies mentioned (Emotional Support Seeking and Instrumental Support Seeking) but even without that information, this theory provides an interesting perspective.

About Hobfoll's theory:

The Conservation of Resources (COR) Model (Hobfoll, 1989) is an integrated model of stress that encompasses several stress theories. According to the model, individuals seek to acquire and maintain resources, including objects (e.g., homes, clothes, food), personal characteristics (e.g., self-esteem), conditions (e.g., being married or living with someone provides social support, more financial security), and energies (e.g., time, money, and knowledge). Stress occurs when there is a loss of resources, or a threat of loss. For example, the model proposes that work-family conflict leads to stress because resources (e.g., time, energy) "are lost in the process of juggling both work and family roles" (p. 352), which in turn leads to job dissatisfaction, anxiety, and thoughts about quitting one's job. Individual difference variables, such as self-esteem, are treated as resources that may moderate the relationship between work-family conflict and stress.

From ScienceDirect:

Coping with multiple sclerosis from the perspective of Stevan E. Hobfoll's theory of conservation of resources


People suffering from multiple sclerosis (MS) vary in their emotional, social, cognitive, and professional functioning. An attempt was therefore made at an in-depth analysis of MS patients’ coping with their chronic disease.


The aim of the study was to investigate possible differences in the ways two groups of MS patients cope with the chronic disease.


The research sample consisted of 82 patients with multiple sclerosis. Based on S.E. Hobfoll's conservation of resources theory, two groups of MS patients were distinguished, one experiencing resource gains, and the other – resource losses. Coping strategies were measured using the Proactive Coping Inventory (PCI), and the dynamics of conservation of resources – the COR – Evaluation scale in the Polish adaptation.


Such coping strategies as Emotional Support Seeking (t = 2.081, p = 0.041) and Instrumental Support Seeking (t = 2.364, p = 0.021) turned out to differentiate between MS patients with resource gains and those experiencing resource losses.


The dynamics of resources in MS patients may prove significant in explaining the process of coping with chronic disease.
Corresponding author at: Instytut Psychologii, Uniwersytet im. Adama Mickiewicza, ul. Szamarzewskiego 89, 60-568 Poznań, Poland.
MS Speaks--online for 17 years

SPMS, diagnosed 1980. Avonex 2001-2004. Copaxone 2007-2010. Glatopa (glatiramer acetate 40mg 3 times/week) since 12/16/20.


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