Critical Thinking Questions

Review the items on the Social Readjustment Rating Scale. Select one of the items and discuss how it might bring about distress and eustress.


Answers will vary. For example, many people look forward to celebrating the Christmas holiday, but it can be stressful in that it requires some degree of readjustment. Getting together with family may bring eustress, while the schedule and travel demands of may bring distress. Giving gifts to others and seeing their enjoyment may bring eustress, but the financial burden associated with buying presents could produce distress. Each of these things requires making some minor adjustments to one’s life, and thus is considered somewhat stressful.

Job burnout tends to be high in people who work in human service jobs. Considering the three dimensions of job burnout, explain how various job aspects unique to being a police officer might lead to job burnout in that line of work.


Answers will vary. Many calls that police officers make can be emotionally draining (e.g., tragic deaths, suicides, and children who live in squalid conditions), which might eventually lead to feelings of exhaustion that one can no longer deal with such things. Depersonalization may occur if a police officer works in an environment in which she feels disrespected and unappreciated, which may lead to cynical and callous feelings toward the public. Constant disrespect from others may diminish a police officer’s sense of personal accomplishment.