, Volume 5, Issue 1, pp 1-23

Stressful Life Events: A Revision and Update of the Social Readjustment Rating Scale

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The widely used and cited Social Readjustment Rating Scale developed by Holmes and Rahe (1967) was comprehensively revised and updated. The new instrument, containing 51 major life events, was administered to a national sample of 5000. Respondents were asked to rate the stressfulness of each life event on a 1–100 scale. Completed surveys were returned by 3122 individuals (62.4%). Responses were analyzed using repeated measures MANOVA and profile analysis. Major results included: (a) statistically and practically significant differences in mean ratings for the 51 life events; (b) five overlapping themes in the top 20 rated life events—death and dying, healthcare, crime and the criminal justice system, financial/economic issues, and family-related issues; and (c) an amazing level of agreement concerning perceived life event stressfulness, regardless of gender, age, or income level.