Self-Compassion in Clinical Samples: A Systematic Literature Review

Athanasakou Dimitra, Karakasidou Eirini, Pezirkianidis Christos, Lakioti Agathi, Stalikas Anastassios
2020 Psychology  
Self-compassion, broadly, means to treat oneself kindly in times of need, same as one would do with a dear friend (Neff, 2003b) . This systematic review focuses on self-compassion as is found in clinical samples. It specifically reviews 28 relevant studies to find out if people belonging in what is called "clinical samples" have lower levels of self-compassion than those of non-clinical samples in the first place and if this is a crucial factor for the appearance of psychopathological symptoms
more » ... hological symptoms (i.e. anxiety disorders, bipolar disorder, borderline personality disorder, PTSD, depression, schizophrenia etc.), or it is the other way around. Even though most studies tend to agree that low self-compassion and psychopathology are present in clinical samples, no study until now can prove a clause for causality, as most studies were of a cross-sectional design and had a great heterogeneity concerning both mental health issues involved and ages/genders. Future studies could use additional mediators to check out how low self-compassion and mental health are connected. Another question to be asked is if self-compassion is equally important for one's recovery as it is for the prevention of appearance of mental illness. The systematic review highlights issues from the current evidence that may be used for further research.
doi:10.4236/psych.2020.112015 fatcat:xdfc2tbpcncshl5zwuwputzoiq