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Self-compassion and the regulation of health behaviours

  • Full or part time
  • Application Deadline
    Applications accepted all year round
  • Self-Funded PhD Students Only
    Self-Funded PhD Students Only

Project Description

Emerging theory and research suggests that self-compassion, taking a kind, non-judgmental, and mindful stance towards oneself in times of challenge or failure, promotes the practice of positive health behaviours through its links to healthy self-regulation. According to the Self-regulation Resource model (SRRM), self-compassion plays a role in adaptive self-regulation by 1) reducing the negative emotions and self-blame that can derail successful self-regulation, 2) generating positive emotions through the acceptance of negative states, and 3) increasing a sense of connection with the future self. This PhD project will focus on better understanding the processes linking self-compassion to a range of health-related behaviours, including health-promoting and health-risky behaviours, through the lens of the SRRM. The project will also examine whether interventions aimed at increasing self-compassion are effective to improve engagement in, and the success of, important health behaviour changes, as well as the boundary conditions that may limit these effects.

Funding Notes

Requirements: We ask for a good honours degree of 2:1 or above and generally a masters or pending masters (merit or distinction) in Psychology or a related discipline.


Sirois, F. M. (2015). A self-regulation resource model of self-compassion and health behavior intentions in emerging adults. Preventive Medicine Reports, 2, 218-222.
Sirois, F. M., Kitner, R., & Hirsch, J. K. (2014). Self-compassion, affect, and health behaviors. Health Psychology.

How good is research at University of Sheffield in Psychology, Psychiatry and Neuroscience?

FTE Category A staff submitted: 34.45

Research output data provided by the Research Excellence Framework (REF)

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