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Self-compassion, physical health and the mediating role of health-promoting behaviours

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Sara Dunne, David Sheffield, Joseph Chilcot

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)993-999
JournalJournal of Health Psychology
Issue number7
Early online date26 Apr 2016
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2018


King's Authors


To test the hypothesis that self-compassion predicts better physical health and that this is partially mediated through health-promoting behaviours, 147 adults completed self-report measures of self-compassion, health-promoting behaviours and physical health. Self-compassion and health-promoting behaviours were negatively associated with physical symptom scores. Self-compassion was positively associated with health-promoting behaviours. A bootstrapped mediation model confirmed a significant direct effect of self-compassion on physical health through health-promoting behaviours (R2 = 0.13, b = −8.98, p = 0.015), which was partially mediated through health-promoting behaviours (R2 = 0.06, b = −3.16, 95 per cent confidence interval [−6.78, −0.86]). Findings underscore the potential health-promoting benefits of self-compassion.

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