The Effect of Self-compassion on Emotions when Experiencing a Sense of Inferiority Across Comparison Situations

This study examined different emotions induced by social comparisons between the two groups divided by the level of self- compassion. A total of 108 Korean undergraduates (62% women; mean age of 21 years) first responded to the self-compassion scale to divide them into either high or low self-compassion group.

They were also presented with two scenarios (upward and downward comparisons). After reading each scenario, respectively, they completed a survey to assess their emotions. ANOVA results showed no significant difference between high and low self-compassion groups in experience of positive emotion, whereas the high self-compassion group reported less negative feelings than their counterpart after both scenarios.

This suggests that self-compassion is a potentially influential factor buffering the negative consequences of social comparisons.

Young Min Choi
Dong-gwi Lee 

Hee-Kyung Lee