Mindful Self-Compassion

Mindful self-compassion (MSC) involves treating ourselves with kindness and understanding, especially in the face of challenges. It includes acknowledging struggles without judgment. MSC embraces adopting a sense of mindfulness and common humanity– understanding that everyone faces challenges and experiences pain. MSC promotes emotional well-being and resilience. When we can be more understanding and lighter with ourselves and understand that failure is a normal part of the larger human experience, we become stronger and more resilient.

Scientific Evidence

Many of us believe being self-critical and hard on ourselves is a good thing. We mistakenly think that being competitive and pushing ourselves hard is required for success. Research is proving these theories wrong. Most of us don’t stop to consider whether our self-critical attitudes are helping us achieve our goals. We don’t realize that they are standing in our way.

Scientific evidence on MSC suggests that cultivating a kinder attitude toward oneself is associated with positive psychological and physical outcomes including resilience, reduced fear of failure, decrease in anxiety and depression symptoms, increased motivation and more.

For more information on the science: https://self-compassion.org/the-research/

How Mindful Self-Compassion is Used in Therapy

The use of mindful self-compassion in therapy is based on the specific needs and goals of the client. Overall, integrating MSC skills and practices into therapy can be a powerful tool to help build emotional resilience, improve self-esteem, increase motivation, and develop a more positive outlook on life.

Curious about how self-compassionate you are? Take this short, anonymous quiz to find out!


The concept of self-compassion has been extensively developed and researched by Dr. Kristin Neff, a psychologist and researcher. Christopher Germer is a clinical psychologist, lecturer, and author who, like Kristin Neff, has made notable contributions to the field of self-compassion.


Neff, K. & Germer, C. (2018). The Mindful Self-Compassion Workbook. New York: Guilford Press.

Germer, C. & Neff, K. (2019). Teaching the Mindful Self-Compassion Program: A Guide for Professionals. New York: Guilford Press.   

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