Challenge stressors, hindrance stressors, and psychological strain: the role of appraisals and goal orientations
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[ACCESS RESTRICTED TO THE UNIVERSITY OF MISSOURI AT AUTHOR'S REQUEST.] The challenge-hindrance stressor framework suggests that most workers experience challenge stressors positively and hindrance stressors negatively. However, research has shown that both types of stressors are positively related to psychological strain, a negative outcome. Using the transactional theory of stress, I examined whether and how individuals' appraisals of challenge and hindrance stressors and their goal orientations influence the positive relationships between both types of stressors and psychological strain. I surveyed 278 full-time employees from various occupations twice over a two-week span. My findings revealed that despite challenge stressors' positive conceptualization, individuals appraise them negatively as constraints. Additionally, I found that constraint appraisals are one mechanism that influences the positive relationship between challenge stressors and psychological strain. Lastly, my results also indicated that individuals with a stronger learning goal orientation are more likely to appraise both types of stressors as opportunities and individuals with a stronger performance-avoid goal orientation are more likely to appraise both types of stressors as constraints.