Being kind to my socially anxious mind; A study of the relationship between selfcompassion and social anxiety
AbstractSelf-compassion is a relatively new construct in Western psychology. It involves a kind and accepting attitude towards oneself during failure, when experiencing difficulties, or disliking an aspect of oneself. In the face of social failure, self-compassion might be particularly useful for people with social anxiety. The present study aimed to examine the relationship between social anxiety and self-compassion. A total of 120 individuals completed online questionnaires measuring self-compassion, social anxiety, fear of negative evaluation, and self-focused attention. Results showed that higher levels of social anxiety, fear of negative evaluation, and self-focused attention were strongly related to less self-compassion. Self-compassion might, therefore, be a useful construct for people with social anxiety and explicit training in self-compassion may give rise to a more caring and kinder attitude towards oneself
American Psychiatric Association (2000). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders. Washington, DC.
Bögels, S.M., & Mansell, W. (2004). Attention processes in the maintenance and treatment of social phobia: hypervigilance, avoidance and self-focused attention. Clinical Psychology Review, 24, 827-856.
Clark, D.A., & Beck, A.T. (2010). Cognitive therapy of anxiety disorders. Science and practice. New York: The Guilford Press.
Clark, D.M., & Wells, A. (1995). A cognitive model of social phobia. In R.G. Heimberg, M.R. Liebowitz, D.A. Hope & F.R. Schneier (Eds.), Social Phobia. Diagnosis, assessment and treatment (pp. 69-93). New York: The Guilford Press.
Cox, B.J., Fleet, C., & Stein, M.B. (2004). Self-criticism and social phobia in the US national comorbidity survey. Journal of Affective Disorders, 82, 227-234.
Germer, C.K., & Neff, K.D. (2013). Self-compassion in clinical practice. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 69(8), 856-867.
Gilbert, P., & Procter, S. (2006). Compassionate mind training for people with high shame and selfcriticism: Overview and pilot study of a group therapy approach. Clinical Psychology & Psychotherapy, 13, 353-379.
Leary, M.R. (1983). A brief version of the Fear of Negative Evaluation Scale. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 9, 371-375.
Leary, M.R., Tate, E.B., Adams, C.E., Allen, A.B., & Hancock, J. (2007). Self-compassion and reactions to unpleasant self-relevant events: The implications of treating oneself kindly. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 92, 887-904.
Liebowitz, M.R. (1987). Social phobia. Modern Problems in Pharmacopsychiatry, 22, 141-173.
Mattick, R.P., & Clarke, J.C. (1998). Development and validation of measures of social phobia, srutinity fear and social interaction anxiety. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 36, 455-470.
Neff, K.D. (2003a). Self-compassion: An alternative conceptualization of a healthy attitude toward oneself. Self and Identity, 2, 85-102.
Neff, K.D. (2003b). The development and validation of a scale to measure self-compassion. Self and Identity, 2, 223-250.
Neff, K.D. (2008). Self-compassion: Moving beyond the pitfalls of a separate self-concept. In J. Bauer & H.A. Wayment (Eds.), Transcending self-interest: Psychological explorations of the quiet ego (pp. 95-105). Washington DC: APA Books.
Neff, K.D. (2011). Zelfcompassie. Stop jezelf te veroordelen. Amsterdam: De Bezige Bij.
Neff, K.D., & Germer, C.K. (2013). A pilot study and randomized controlled trial of the Mindful SelfCompassion program. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 69(1), 28-44.
Neff, K.D., Hsieh, Y., & Dejitterat, K. (2005). Self-compassion, achievement goals, and coping with academic failure. Self and Identity, 4, 263-287.
Neff, K.D., Kirkpatrick, K., & Rude, S.S. (2007). Self-compassion and adaptive psychological functioning. Journal of Research in Personality, 41, 139-154.
Neff, K.D., Rude, S.S., & Kirkpatrick, K.L. (2006). An examination of self-compassion in relation to positive psychological functioning and personality traits. Journal of Research in Personality, 41, 908-916.
Raes, F. (2010). Rumination and worry as mediators of the relationship between self-compassion and depression and anxiety. Personality and Individual Differences, 48, 757-761.
Rapee, R.M., & Heimberg, R.G. (1997). A cognitive-behavioral model of anxiety in social phobia. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 35, 741-756.
Schoemaker, C., Van Balkom A.J.L.M., Van Gool, C.H., Gommer, A.M., Poos, M.J.J.C., & Penninx, B.W. (2013). Hoe vaak komen angststoornissen voor? Retrieved from http://www.nationaalkompas.nl/gezondheiden-ziekte/ziekten-en-aandoeningen/psychische-stoornissen/angststoornissen/hoe-vaak-komenangststoornissen-voor/
Voncken, M.J., & Bögels, S.M. (2011). Cognitieve therapie bij sociale-angststoornis. In S.M. Bögels & P. Van Oppen (Eds.), Cognitieve therapie: theorie en praktijk (pp. 197-230). Houten: Bohn Stafleu van Loghum.
Werner, K.H., Jazaieri, H., Goldin, P.R., Ziv, M., Heimberg, R.G., & Gross, J.J. (2012). Self-compassion and social anxiety disorder. Anxiety, Stress, & Coping, 25(5), 543-558