Good for the Self: Self-Compassion and Other Self-Related Constructs in Relation to Symptoms of Anxiety and Depression in Non-clinical Youths

Peter Muris, Cor Meesters, Anna Pierik, Bo de Kock

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Abstract

This study examined relationships among self-compassion, self-esteem, and self-efficacy and symptoms of anxiety disorders and depression in a sample of 132 non-clinical adolescents aged 12-17 years. The results first of all indicated that the Shortened Self-Compassion Scale for Adolescents was reliable (i.e., all Cronbach's alphas were >.70) and valid in terms of both construct (as demonstrated by a principal components analysis which revealed the hypothesized three-factor structure) and concurrent validity (i.e., as shown by means of positive correlations with self-esteem and self-efficacy). Further, the expected negative correlations were found between self-compassion and anxiety and depression, indicating that higher levels of this self-related construct are associated with lower symptom levels, and vice versa. Of the three components of self-compassion, mindfulness appeared most convincingly related to symptoms of anxiety and depression. Finally, when controlling for other self-related constructs, self-compassion no longer accounted for a significant proportion in the variance of symptom levels. In contrast, self-esteem (depression) and in particular self-efficacy (anxiety and depression) did show unique explanatory power.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)607-617
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Child and Family Studies
Volume25
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 3 Feb 2016

Keywords

  • Self-compassion
  • Self-efficacy
  • Self-esteem
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Adolescents
  • ADOLESCENT PSYCHOPATHOLOGY
  • EFFICACY
  • DISORDERS
  • ESTEEM
  • CHILDHOOD
  • CHILDREN
  • QUESTIONNAIRE
  • ASSOCIATION
  • RELIABILITY
  • COMPETENCE

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