Self-compassion, Interpersonal Conflict Resolutions, and Well-being

Self and Identity

Volume 12, 2013 – Issue 2


This study examined the link between self-compassion and the balance of the needs of self and other in conflict situations. College undergraduates (N = 506) were asked to provide an example of a time in which their needs conflicted with those of their mother, father, best friend and romantic partner. Participants were asked how they resolved the conflict (subordinating, self-prioritizing, or compromising). They also reported whether their resolution choice felt authentic, the degree of emotional turmoil experienced when resolving the conflict, and their sense of well-being in each relational context. Across contexts, higher levels of self-compassion were related to greater likelihood to compromise and lesser likelihood to self-subordinate needs, as well as greater authenticity, lower levels of emotional turmoil, and higher levels of relational well-being. With fathers and romantic partners, the link between self-compassion and well-being was mediated by greater likelihood to make compromise decisions.