The purpose of the study is to understand the nature of "hope" by explaining It more scientifically. A sample of 37 statements bearing on the personal meaning of hope was sorted by 13 cancer, 13 chronically-ill, and 5 disabled patients. The results indicate that there are seven types of hope: (1) dependence of transcendental-being, (2) cognition of reality, (3) orientation-toward-relationship, (4) existential, (5) self-fulfillment, (6) miracle-expectation, and (7) redefinition of reality. From the study, "hope" could be defined as the process in which continuous imagination and evolution of possibility cause changes in human recognition, attitude, action, etc. The significance of the study is three fold: (1) The discovery of seven types of hope in Korean people and the better understanding of its schemata; (2) suitability of Q methodology to the study of nursing concepts; and (3) the suggestion of assessments and intervention techniques based on the understanding of hope from this research.