MSN Thesis Defense, “What characteristics are keeping nurses flourishing in difficult environments: an appreciative inquiry study”

Academic Events
Trinity Western University
Room 39, Neufeld Science Centre
7600 Glover Rd
Langley, BC V2Y1Y1

By: Laura Del Rio

Supervisor: Landa Terblanche

Second Reader: Sheryl Reimer-Kirkham

Third Reader: Faith Richardson

Exam Chair: Barbara Astle


There are many studies documenting the adversities facing nurses today. However, there is little research examining the resiliency among nurses and their ability to flourish amidst these adversities.

Using a qualitative method, this thesis aims to address this gap in knowledge by examining the life-giving factors that allow nurses to be resilient and flourish in unhealthy environments. Using the life-giving factors, she will develop a framework of resiliency that encourages flourishing.

Using the appreciative inquiry methodology, nine nurses working in British Columbia were interviewed. These interviews focused on their positive perspectives and experiences to identify life-giving factors influencing their resiliency. Six sub-themes were identified in the development of resiliency: personal life; a sense of purpose/calling; intrinsic characteristics; education & career opportunity; workplace culture and reflection and self-awareness. Resiliency can be present even if all six sub-themes are not present; however, in order to flourish all six sub-themes must be in a healthy state.

This thesis provides practical wisdom that can be applied to all areas of nursing in order to promote resiliency and flourishing.