Self-Compassion Among Psychotherapists: A Phenomenological Inquiry

  • Author / Creator
    Patershuk, Clare A. R.
  • Self-compassion has become a focus for psychology research and practice, in part, due to its many psychological benefits, including life satisfaction, social connectedness, self-awareness, improved mental health, and a supportive attitude toward the self (Gilbert & Proctor, 2006; Neff, 2003b; Neff, Kirkpatrick, & Rude, 2007). However, self-compassion among psychotherapists has yet to be thoroughly researched, and may have benefits for therapist well being and therapeutic outcomes. This study sought to understand how psychotherapists experience and interpret self- compassion. Seven registered psychologists took part in semi-structured interviews. Data was analyzed using Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis to identify themes in the data (Chapman & Smith, 2002). Seven themes emerged: (1) self- acceptance, (2) self-understanding, (3) growth from life experience, (4) self-care, (5) being in the here and now, (6) gaining perspective, and (7) enhancing psychotherapy. Psychotherapists may benefit from professional development to enhance self- compassion. Future directions could include quantitative research in this area.

  • Subjects / Keywords
  • Graduation date
  • Type of Item
  • Degree
    Master of Education
  • DOI
  • License
    This thesis is made available by the University of Alberta Libraries with permission of the copyright owner solely for non-commercial purposes. This thesis, or any portion thereof, may not otherwise be copied or reproduced without the written consent of the copyright owner, except to the extent permitted by Canadian copyright law.
  • Language
  • Institution
    University of Alberta
  • Degree level
  • Department
    • Department of Educational Psychology
  • Specialization
    • Counselling Psychology
  • Supervisor / co-supervisor and their department(s)
    • Truscott, Derek (Educational Psychology)
  • Examining committee members and their departments
    • Hanson, William (Educational Psychology)
    • Leroy, Carol (Elementary Education)