An Exploration of Burnout in Individuals with Type D Personality

Carla A. Kelly, Walden University


There are numerous physical and mental health implications associated with burnout and Type D personality (TDP). TDP is defined by the presence of specific levels of both negative affectivity and social inhibition. The purpose of this research was to examine the severity and prevalence of burnout in working adults with TDP in comparison to those without TDP. Social cognitive theory was the theoretical foundation for this study. Online surveys were used to gather responses to the Type D Scale-14 (DS14), the standard for measure for assessing TDP, and the Burnout Measure, Short Version (BMS) from 333 participants. Quantitative analyses included the use of t tests, chi square tests, correlation, and regression analysis to determine (a) if there is a disparity in the severity and prevalence of burnout in individuals with and without TDP; (b) if levels of burnout correlate with levels of TDP; and (c) whether age, gender, or both moderate the relationship between burnout and TDP. According to study results, there was a difference in the prevalence of burnout between groups, as 25.5% of the 143 participants with TDP had burnout compared to 9.3% of the 190 participants without TDP. Mean scores on the BMS were also higher, indicating a significantly greater level of burnout severity for participants with TDP. A positive correlation was found between severity of TDP and severity of burnout. Age was found to moderate the relationship between burnout severity and TDP, but did not affect the relationship between burnout prevalence and TDP. Gender did not have any impact on burnout in individuals with TDP. Neither age nor gender affected the prevalence or severity of burnout in individuals without TDP. These results can be beneficial in healthcare environments for the development of treatments and preventative measures for patients, as well as used by businesses, which have increased expenditures associated with employee burnout.