Longing: A Concept Analysis


  • Funding: Funding for this project came from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Blugold Commitment-Funded Faculty/Student Research Collaboration.



This paper uses Rodgers' evolutionary view of concept analysis to define the human response of longing. The purpose is to develop a definition of longing as the first step in diagnosis development.

Data Source

A literature review was conducted by searching the Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature, American Theological Library Association Religion, JSTOR Philosophy, JSTOR Religion, PsycINFO, and PubMed databases to yield an across-discipline sample of articles.

Data Synthesis

Three researchers identified the attributes, antecedents, consequences, situational context, and surrogate terms of longing.


An operational definition was developed.

Implications for Nursing Practice

Longing is clearly a human response to loss, crossing illness and situations in which nurses encounter patients in multiple settings. This supports the need to further develop longing into a nursing diagnosis.