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Psychol Psychother. 2015 Dec;88(4):351-65. doi: 10.1111/papt.12056. Epub 2015 Feb 5.

Demonstrating mood repair with a situation-based measure of self-compassion and self-criticism.

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1
Department of Clinical, Educational & Health Psychology, University College London, UK.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

The clinical significance of self-criticism and self-compassion has prompted the development of questionnaires assessing these constructs. However, there is a lack of measures assessing their interaction within specific contexts and potential involvement in mood repair processes.

DESIGN:

To rectify this, we developed the Self-Compassion and Self-Criticism Scales (SCCS), based on responses to specific scenarios, and examined its psychometric properties in an online survey and an experimental situation.

METHOD:

In study 1, standard psychometric procedures were used to investigate the reliability and validity of the SCCS. In study 2, an experimental challenge involving a difficult language task was used to test its sensitivity to change.

RESULTS:

In study 1, exploratory factor analysis (n = 413) showed a clear two-factor structure of the SCCS denoting two orthogonal scales, with high internal validity (α ≥ .87). Correlations between the SCCS and existing measures also demonstrated appropriate convergent validity. Study 2 (n = 90) provided preliminary evidence that the SCCS can detect changes in self-appraisals. Participants receiving no performance feedback from the challenge task showed reduced state self-criticism and increased state self-compassion, demonstrating mood repair.

CONCLUSIONS:

The SCCS has promise as a situational measure of self-compassion and self-criticism.

PRACTITIONER POINTS:

In the context of specific problem situations, clients' levels of self-criticism and self-compassion may well be orthogonal and can be assessed with the SCCS. In setting treatment goals and assessing treatment outcome, it may be helpful to target both self-compassion and self-criticism separately.

KEYWORDS:

feedback; mood repair; self-compassion; self-criticism

PMID:
25663161
PMCID:
PMC4949512
DOI:
10.1111/papt.12056
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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