What goes through your mind when you’ve made a mistake, or are just feeling down? Does your inner voice sound like a caring, supportive friend—or like a pestering, harsh critic?
Research suggests that we are usually harder on ourselves than we are on others, believing that self-criticism motivates us to succeed. However, beating ourselves up often makes an unpleasant situation or setback even more stressful.
There’s an alternative: self-compassion. This is when you treat yourself with kindness and understanding, acknowledging your feelings and recognizing that everyone struggles sometimes. In addition to reducing stress, studies find that self-compassion enhances motivation and makes you more likely to accomplish your goals.
How self-compassionate are you? This quiz is designed to help you find out. It’s based on the scientifically validated Self-Compassion Scale developed by Kristin Neff and her colleagues at the University of Texas, Austin.
Please answer the questions below as honestly as possible; there are no right or wrong answers. The last seven questions are about you, and will be used to explore how self-compassion relates to factors like age and gender.
When you're done, you'll get your score, learn more about the benefits of self-compassion, and find resources for developing your ability to be kind to yourself.
Any responses submitted here will never be shared with any organization outside the Greater Good Science Center under any circumstances, ever. All responses are anonymized and only used in aggregate for evaluation purposes.
Take The Quiz
Neff, K. D. (2003). Development and validation of a scale to measure self-compassion. Self and Identity, 2, 223-250.