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Abstract

Whereas both Blatt (1974) and Beck (1983) postulated the existence of two basic cognitive-personality vulnerabilities to depression—sociotropic/anaclitic and autonomous/introjective—recent research and theorizing suggest that self-criticism is a third dimension of vulnerability. To examine the supposition that sociotropy, autonomy, and self-criticism constitute three distinct dimensions of vulnerability, we administered the Personal Style Inventory (PSI; Robins et al., 1994), six items from the Depressive Experiences Questionnaire (DEQ; Blatt, D'Afflitti, & Quinlan, 1976) and the Brief Symptoms Inventory (BSI; Derogatis & Melisaratos, 1983) to 203 Israeli young adults. Confirmatory factor analysis (CFA) provided support for the hypothesized three-factor solution. Regression analyses indicated that each of these dimensions was associated with psychopathology. Findings encourage further integrative work in the field of personality vulnerability.
... Furthermore, Powers et al. found no association between self-criticism and intrinsic motivation, suggesting that self-criticism and autonomy may independently contribute to mental well-being [39]. This may highlight the fact that self-criticism needs to be mitigated independent from motivation in order to protect mental well-being [77]. As noted earlier, self-compassion training may be helpful as it can reduce self-criticism [78]. ...
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University students in the Czech Republic suffer from a low level of mental wellbeing. Research in other university student populations suggests academic motivation, self-compassion and self-criticism are strongly related to mental wellbeing in other university student populations. Students who are motivated to study, kind towards themselves, and less judgemental of them-selves tend to have a high level of mental wellbeing. These relationships had not been evaluated in Czech students. Accordingly, this cross-sectional study aimed to evaluate the relationships be-tween mental wellbeing, academic motivation (intrinsic motivation, extrinsic motivation and amotivation), self-compassion (self-reassurance) and self-criticism (self-inadequacy and self-hate). Of 130 students approached, a convenience sampling of 119 psychology students at a university in the Czech Republic completed a survey regarding these constructs. Correlation, re-gression, and path analyses were conducted. Mental wellbeing was positively associated with intrinsic motivation and self-compassion, whereas negatively associated with amotivation and self-criticism. Self-compassion was identified as the strongest predictor of mental wellbeing of all. Lastly, intrinsic motivation mediated the pathway from self-compassion to mental wellbeing, but not the one from self-inadequacy to mental wellbeing, and the one from self-hate to mental wellbeing. Our findings can help educators to identify effective means to protect students’ mental wellbeing. Cultivating students’ self-compassion may be helpful to protect their mental wellbeing. University staff and educators in the Czech Republic need to consider ways to embed self-compassion training into their students’ programmes or university life.
... Self-Criticism Self-criticism was assessed with a six-item measure based on items that Shahar and associates (Shahar et al. 2008) selected from the 66-item Depressive Experiences Questionnaire. Various authors have utilized this brief scale (e.g., Zuroff et al. 2016). ...
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The current research examined personality and individual difference factors associated with the perceived ability to adapt to the significant challenges accompanying the ongoing public health crisis concerning the COVID-19 pandemic. This cross-sectional study investigated the associations among self-reported adaptability to the pandemic and personality predispositions (dependency, self-criticism, mattering, and self-esteem), cognitive factors (positive, negative, and loneliness automatic thoughts), loneliness, distress, and mood states. A sample of 462 college students from Israel completed an online questionnaire after 10 weeks of social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic. The results confirmed that personality vulnerability factors underscored by a negative sense of self (i.e., self-criticism and dependency) and individual difference factors reflecting self-esteem, feelings of mattering, and fear of not mattering are associated in meaningful ways with adaptability to the pandemic, loneliness, distress, negative mood states, and positive mood states. Most notably, higher self-reported adaptability to the pandemic is associated with lower dependency, self-criticism, and fear of not mattering, and higher levels of self-esteem and mattering. The findings attest to the central role of adaptability and related individual difference factors in acclimatizing to the numerous changes and challenges associated with the COVID-19 crisis. The theoretical and practical implications of our findings are discussed.
... Weiterhin wurde die dispositionelle Selbstkritik mit der Kurzform des Depressive Experiences Questionnaire Self-Criticism (DEQ-SC6; Shahar, Soffer & Gilboa-Shechtman, 2008;Tibubos et al., 2018, under review) gemessen. Das Selbst-Rating erfragt mit sechs Items (siebenstufige Likertskala, 1 = trifft überhaupt nicht zu, 7 = trifft zu) selbstbezogene Gedanken im Hinblick auf die eigenen Leistungserwartungen und -ziele. ...
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Zusammenfassung. Die Kurzfassung des Bielefelder Fragebogens zu Partnerschaftserwartungen (BFPE-12) ist ein Selbstrating zur Messung partnerschaftsbezogener Bindungsaspekte. Neben der Messung der Dimensionen Akzeptanzprobleme, Öffnungsbereitschaft und Zuwendungsbedürfnis können Personen Bindungsmustern zugewiesen werden. Die vorliegende Studie evaluiert Faktorenstruktur und psychometrische Eigenschaften des Instruments anhand einer aktuellen bevölkerungsrepräsentativen Stichprobe. Die Stichprobe umfasst N = 1574 Personen. Es wurden soziodemographische Variablen, der BFPE-12, die Kurzform des Depressive Experiences Questionnaire Self-Criticism sowie der Patient Health Questionnaire-4 erhoben. Es wurden explorative und konfirmatorische Faktorenanalysen durchgeführt und interne Konsistenz, Itemstatistiken und Korrelationen mit Außenkriterien bestimmt. Explorative und konfirmatorische Faktorenanalyse bestätigten die angenommene Faktorenstruktur (RMSEA < .08). Die interne Konsistenz der drei Skalen war akzeptabel (α > .7). Starke Akzeptanzprobleme und geringe Öffnungsbereitschaft korrelierten hypothesenkonform mit Selbstkritik, Ängstlichkeit und Depressivität. z-Werte, t-Werte und Prozentränge werden berichtet. Insgesamt kann für den BFPE-12 konstatiert werden, dass er eine mehrfach evaluierte Faktorenstruktur und akzeptable psychometrische Eigenschaften aufweist.
... The DEQ is a 66-item self-report measure of depressive personality styles, including dependency, self-criticism, and self-efficacy. Shahar et al. (2008) identified six DEQ items that have content validity in terms of measuring self-criticism. These items displayed good psychometric properties, with an adequate internal consistency in both time 1 and time 2 (Cronbach's α = .86, ...
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The interplay between personality and psychopathology in young adults’ insomnia is poorly understood. The authors examined the main-and-interactive role of self-criticism, anxiety, and depressive symptoms in young adults’ insomnia, as well as the potentially mediating role of sleep-related arousal and maladaptive cognitive styles. One hundred sixty-one undergraduate freshmen (Mage = 25.0 years) were assessed twice over 1.5 months, using measures of sleep quality, anxiety, depressive symptomatology, self-criticism, pre-sleep arousal, and mental control strategies. A structural equation modeling (SEM) analysis revealed that anxiety prospectively predicted insomnia, and this effect was mediated by sleep arousal and social avoidance. As well, self-criticism prospectively predicted insomnia under elevated levels of depressive symptoms. In young adults, insomnia treatment should include a routine assessment and intervention with anxiety, depression, and self-criticism.
... The complexity of self-criticism becomes evident, when looking at self-report measures for self-criticism with different conceptualization of the construct: the Depressive Experience Questionnaire (DEQ; Blatt et al., 1976) and its shorter versions (e.g. 6-item version by Rudich et al., 2008;Shahar et al., 2008), the Forms of Self-criticizing/Attacking and Self-Reassuring Scale (FSCRS; Gilbert et al., 2004), and the Levels of Self-Criticism Scale (LOSC; Thompson and Zuroff, 2004). While the DEQ measures self-criticism as a one-dimensional vulnerability factor to depression -alongside with the two other dimensions dependency as risk for anaclitic depression, and self-efficacy as a protective factor -and is used in studies which are based on Blatt's theoretical model of selfcriticism, the FSCRS (Gilbert et al., 2004) is based on Gilberts conceptualization of self-criticism and captures self-criticism via the two subscales inadequate self (FSCRS-IS) and hated self (FSCRS-HS). ...
Article
Background: Self-criticism represents a central phenomenon in a variety of mental disorders. The review looks at the recent body of literature (2012–2018) to summarize the relation of self-criticism and psychopathology beyond depression and aims at detecting how different conceptualizations of self-criticism with psychoanalytical, psychodynamic, or cognitive-evolutionary background are related to psychopathology. Furthermore, latest treatment approaches for dysfunctional forms of self-criticism are reviewed. Methods: The literature research of five databases (PsycINFO, PSYNDEX, PubMed, Medline, and Cochrane Library) took place in August 2018. Inclusion criteria for studies to enter the review narrative were an adult sample, non-clinical samples as well as clinical samples, and an empirical approach, which resulted in quantitative data. Results: 48 studies entered the review. Besides depressive symptoms, self-criticism showed positive relations to symptoms of eating disorders, social anxiety disorder, and personality disorders as well as to psychotic symptoms or interpersonal problems through different conceptualizations of self-criticism. Regarding the treatment of self-criticism, compassion- or emotion-focused therapy interventions were investigated in most of the reviewed studies and both reduced self-criticism in clinical and non-clinical samples. However, harsh forms of self-criticism were more persistent and difficult to change. Limitations: The review focused only on the latest empirical findings regarding self-criticism and psychopathology. Conclusion: Potentially functional forms and functions of self-criticism need further consideration, as they represent a possible goal of psychotherapeutic treatment. Future research should address specific questions regarding antecedents and consequences of self-criticism.
... Diğer yandan, kişisel bir görevi gerçekleştirmede tekrarlanan başarısızlığın otonomik kişide depresyona yol açması sosyotropik kişiden daha olasıdır. Mükemmelliyetçiliğin/ kişisel eleştirinin otonomi kişilik özelliği ile ilgili olduğu ve bu nedenle sosyotropi, otonomi ve kişisel eleştirinin depresyona ve genel psikopatolojiye yatkınlıkta bilişsel kuramın üç bileşeni olduğu belirtilmiştir 50 . Yaşam olayları listesi kullanarak olayların üniversite öğrencileri için verdikleri stres derecesi ile öğrencilerin sosyotropi ve otonomi puanları belirlenmiştir. ...
... Recent research has attempted to understand whether they represent complementary dimensions of vulnerability. Shahar et al. (2008) demonstrated with confirmatory factor analysis that self-criticism, sociotropy, and dependency can be considered three dimensions that have a significant, positive association with depression. Simply put, these factors are the seminal cognitive styles that may predispose an individual to depression. ...
Article
Background: Bipolar spectrum disorders (BSDs) are highly comorbid with anxiety, which is associated with an extended duration and exacerbation of depressive symptoms. Unfortunately, the underlying mechanisms are not known. This study examined the role of maladaptive cognitive styles in the co-occurrence of BSDs and anxiety disorders and prediction of depressive symptoms. Methods: Participants included 141 young adults (69.6% female, mean age=20.24, SD=2.11), in one of three groups: a BSD group (bipolar II, cyclothymia, n=48), a comorbid BSD/anxiety group (n=50), and a demographically-matched healthy control group (n=43), who were followed prospectively. Participants completed the Cognitive Style Questionnaire (CSQ), Depressive Experiences Questionnaire (DEQ), Dysfunctional Attitudes Scale (DAS), Sociotropy Autonomy Scale (SAS), Halberstadt Mania Inventory (HMI) and Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) at the initial assessment. One year later, participants completed the BDI and HMI again to assess severity of depressive and hypomanic/manic symptoms. Results: A multivariate analysis of co-variance (MANCOVA) revealed significant differences between the three groups on their DAS Perfectionism, DEQ Dependency, DEQ Self-Criticism, CSQ Negative, SAS Autonomy, and Time 2 BDI scores, with the BSD/anxiety group scoring higher than the BSD only group on all measures except the CSQ. Preacher and Hayes׳ (2008) bootstrapping method was used to test for mediational effects of the significant cognitive style measures on depressive symptoms at follow-up. The 95% confidence intervals for the indirect effect of group on follow-up depressive symptoms through DAS Perfectionism did not include zero, indicating the presence of a significant mediating relationship for perfectionism. Limitations: This study only used two waves of data; three waves of data would allow one to investigate the full causal effect of one variable on another. Further, a comorbid anxiety diagnosis consisted of any anxiety disorder. Further research should separate groups by their specific anxiety diagnoses; this could afford a more complete understanding of the effect of types of anxiety on prospective depressive symptoms. Conclusions: After taking into account initial levels of depressive and hypomanic/manic symptoms, we found that those with BSD/anxiety comorbidity experienced more severe depressive symptoms, but not more severe hypomanic/manic symptoms. Further, their more severe prospective depressive symptoms are explained by a perfectionistic cognitive style.
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Self-criticism is a stable personality trait identified as a serious risk factor for psychopathology and weight-related health problems. Therefore, it is relevant to epidemiological research, which requires a relatively brief instrument for measuring trait self-criticism in the general population. The current study introduces a brief measure of self-criticism and presents empirical results that inform on its reliability and validity. Based on the six-item version of the Depressive Experiences Questionnaire Self-Criticism (DEQ-SC6), thorough psychometric analyses on a German representative sample (N = 2,516) were conducted and resulted in the final four-item scale: the Depressive Experiences Questionnaire Self-Criticism 4 (DEQ-SC4). Its internal consistency was good and a one-dimensional factor structure showed a good model fit. In terms of construct validity, the DEQ-SC4 was moderately linked to symptoms of depression and a non-linear association between the DEQ-SC4 and body mass index was observed, with the highest levels of self-criticism reported by underweight participants. In addition, the DEQ-SC4 showed high positive correlations with another short version of the DEQ-SC and the Big Five personality dimensions assessed in samples of university students (N = 206) and patients (N = 55), meeting theoretically-based expectations. The DEQ-SC4 therefore represents a brief screening measure of self-criticism in the general population with good psychometric properties.
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Background: Chronic physical pain is one of modern medicine's principal challenges. Recently, there has been a keen research interest in the role of Depressive Personality Vulnerability (DPV) in the course of chronic pain. Objective: This is the first attempt to examine the role of three leading DPV dimensions - sociotropy, autonomy, and self-criticism - in chronic pain. Method: Chronic pain patients (N = 428) were assessed four times as to their pain, disability, anxious-depression, and pain-based catastrophizing. At Time 1, sociotropy, autonomy, and self-criticism were also assessed. The effects of sociotropy, autonomy, and self-criticism on pain, disability, anxious-depression, and pain-based catastrophizing was examined using Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) analyses. Results: All DPV dimensions uniquely predicted Time 1, but not Time 2, anxious-depression. Sociotropy predicted Time 1 pain and catastrophizing over and above anxious-depression, as well as an increase in catastrophizing over time. Autonomy predicted a decrease in catastrophizing and disability, and Time 1 anxious-depression predicted an increase in self-criticism. Conclusions: DPV, particularly sociotropy, appear to be a unique dimension of DPV in chronic pain. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
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Stress generation research has historically examined the link between depression and stressful life events, particularly interpersonal events. Stress generation theory has rarely been applied to personality disorders, which are characterized by longstanding, pervasive, and often self-perpetuating interpersonal difficulties. In addition, there is little research on the specific types of interpersonal deficits associated with personality disorders. We examined the associations between symptoms of Avoidant Personality Disorder (AVPD), interpersonal competence, and daily stress generation. College students completed measures of personality disorder symptoms, interpersonal competence, and a 7-day diary of daily negative events. Multilevel mediation models showed that lower Conflict Management skills mediated the relation between AVPD symptoms and daily negative events. These results suggest that a daily model of stress generation might apply to these personality disorder symptoms and that interpersonal competence is an important mediator of the process of daily stress generation.
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The revised Personal Style Inventory (PSI) was developed to measure the sociotropy and autonomy personality dimensions; both of these dimensions are thought to confer specific vulnerabilities to the onset, maintenance, and reoccurrence of depression. Confirmatory factor analysis was used to test the theoretical structure that informed the construction of the PSI. Using a large sample of nonclinical participants (n = 869) and a sample of outpatients with major depression (n = 101), both the items and the subscales of the PSI decomposed into factor structures that were, overall, fair to good representations of the theoretical model. Modifications were needed at the subscale level to achieve an adequate fit for the nonclinical and clinical samples, which provide implications for both the measurement and theory of the PSI and the sociotropy and autonomy domains.
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Previous research indicates that the perfectionism/self-criticism (PESC) domain of the Personal Style Inventory (PSI; Robins etal. [1994]. Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment, 16, 277–300), which was originally constructed as an indicator of autonomy, serves as an indicator of both sociotropy and autonomy. To shed light on this unexpected finding, the PSI and related constructs were longitudinally examined among Israeli undergraduates (N=260). At both T1 and T2, PESC had significant loadings on sociotropy, autonomy, and depressive symptoms, and it correlated strongly with the self-criticism factor of the Depressive Experiences (Blatt, D’Afflitti, & Quinlan, [1976]. Journal of Abnormal psychology, 95, 383–389). As well, in some analyses PESC interacted with initial depression and subsequent stress to predict T2 depression. Rather than measuring multidimensional perfectionism, PESC appears to measure self-criticism, or a more broadly defined negative self-evaluation.
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Scheff's argument (2001), whereby shame and the breakdown of social ties are causality implicated in depression, has potential to inform quantitative research on depression, particularly research focused on determinants of personality vulnerability. In the present article, I relate Scheff's argument to more than two and a half decades of theory and research on the interpersonal nature of depression, and on personality vulnerability to depression. The focus of this review is on the personality theories of Blatt (1974) and Beck (1983), in which an introjective/self-critical/autonomous personality dimension and an anaclitic/dependent/sociotropic personality dimension are each conceptualized as a marker of vulnerability. Reviewing empirical research on these two dimensions, I then point out a certain puzzle emerging from previous findings: The introjective personality dimension appears to confer considerably more vulnerability than the anaclitic personality dimension. An attempt is made to reconcile this puzzle by drawing from Scheff's discussion of shame, as well as from psychosocial research on internal representations of self and others (Blatt, Auerbach, and Levy 1997), and from sociological work on the depressogenic conditions of modernity (Giddens 1991; Seligman 1990).
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Depression is well recognized to be rooted in the down-regulation of positive affect systems. This paper reviews some of the social and non-social theories that seek to explain the potential adaptive advantages of being able to tone down positive affect, and how dysfunctions in such affect control can occur in some contexts. Common to most evolutionary theories of depression is the view that loss of control over aversive events and/or major resources/rewards exert downward pressure on positive affect. Social theories, however, suggest that it is loss of control over the social environment that is particularly depressogenic. Two evolutionary theories (the attachment-loss, and the defeat-loss theories) are briefly reviewed and their interaction considered. It is suggested that phenotypes for toning down positive affect, in the face of loss of control, may become more severe in the context of socially hostile, unsupportive and/or excessively competitive environments. The paper briefly considers how human competencies for self-evaluation in relation to others, rumination, self-criticism, and modern social contexts can accentuate dysfunctional expressions of affect regulation.
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Autonomy and sociotropy, reflecting excessive concern about autonomous achievement and interpersonal relationships, respectively, have been proposed as the two personality dimensions that prompt vulnerability to depression. Accordingly, several self-report questionnaires have been developed to measure these two dimensions. The revised Personal Style Inventory (PSI) represents a significant improvement over existing measures in that it assesses entire domains of autonomy and sociotropy. However, the PSI’s usefulness has been undermined by its unclear factor structure. Using 574 college students in Korea, the present study examined the factor structure of the revised PSI using hierarchical confirmatory factor analysis. Several first-order and two two-factor hierarchical models were tested, with a hierarchical model specifying perfectionism as associated with both hierarchical factors (Autonomy and Sociotropy) deemed the best fitting.
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Several theorists have suggested that excessive concerns about social relatedness or autonomous achievement create vulnerabilities to depression in response to negative interpersonal or achievement events, respectively. In this paper, I describe these models and review empirical studies of them. I then discuss a number of methodological and conceptual issues that arise from these studies and that need to be addressed as this research area matures. Finally, I discuss findings that need to be incorporated by these models, which suggest that the relations among personality, events, and depression are more complex, bi-directional, and recursive.
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Researchers (e.g., [Gibb, B.E., 2002. Childhood maltreatment and negative cognitive styles. A quantitative and qualitative review. Clinical Psychology Review, 22 (2), 223-246]; [Rose, D.T., Abramson, L.Y., 1992. Developmental predictors of depressive cognitive styles: developmental perspectives on depression. In Cicchetti, D., Toth, S.L. (Eds.), Developmental Perspectives on Depression. Rochester symposium on developmental psychopathology, vol. 4, pp. 323-349]) have proposed that when childhood abuse is verbal (rather than sexual or physical), the child is more likely to develop a negative self-schema because the negative self-cognitions are directly supplied to the child by the abuser (e.g., "you are stupid"). In a test of this theory in adult participants, and drawing on the National Comorbidity Survey (NCS) (N=5877), we investigate the mediating role of current levels of self-criticism on the relationship between retrospective reports of parental verbal abuse, as well as sexual and physical abuse, and adult internalizing symptoms. We found self-criticism, but not dependency traits, to fully mediate the relationship between childhood verbal abuse perpetrated by parents and internalizing (depression, anxiety) symptoms. On the other hand, self-criticism was only a partial mediator of the relationship between the other types of abuse and internalizing symptoms. The NCS data is cross-sectional, which limits any firm conclusions regarding causality. While these results are suggestive that self-criticism is a mediator of the relationship between abuse and internalizing symptoms, longitudinal data are necessary to help rule out alternative explanations. Results of this study suggest that childhood abuse experiences, and in particular verbal abuse, may confer risk for internalizing disorders in part because verbal abuse influences the development of a self-critical style.
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Unlabelled: The experience of pain is influenced by patients' personality, social and cultural background, and patient-doctor interaction. This study examines the role of self-reported pain, pain diagnosis, age, gender, depression, and the personality trait of self-criticism (defined as individuals' tendency to set unrealistically high self-standards and to adopt a punitive stance toward one's self), in determining physicians' view of expected prognosis in response to chronic pain management. Before the first visit to a tertiary chronic pain clinic, patients provided information regarding their perceived pain, depression, and self-criticism. Immediately subsequent to the visit, physicians' evaluated expected prognosis. Participating physicians were blinded to the patient's psychosocial variables collected. Sixty-four patients with chronic pain (34 women and 30 men) with various diagnoses were included. Patients' age, gender, pain diagnosis, self-reported pain, and depression did not significantly correlate with physician's estimation of expected prognosis. In contrast, patients' self-criticism emerged as an independent predictor of physicians' pessimism regarding outcome. Thus, in the chronic pain clinic setting, patients' personality, rather than self-reported pain experience, determines doctor's clinical judgment of expected prognosis. Perspective: Chronic pain is a multimodal negative experience that is determined by physiological, cognitive, personological, and interpersonal factors. In line with this observation, we found patients' personality, specifically, their self-criticism, determines physicians' clinical judgment of expected prognosis.