Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name



Counseling Psychology

First Advisor

Trisha Raque-Bogdan, Ph.D.


Cyberball, Ostracism, Self-compassion, Self-esteem, Shame, Social exclusion


Self-compassion refers to an adaptive way of responding to the self when in distress and consists of three main components: mindfulness, common humanity, and self-kindness. Self-compassion offers a promising alternative to the construct of self-esteem for predicting and influencing responses to ostracism, a specific type of social exclusion in which an individual is ignored for unknown reasons. The present study examined the differential associations of trait self-compassion and trait self-esteem with attribution, emotion regulation, shame, and prosocial responses following an experience of ostracism using the Cyberball ostracism paradigm. Undergraduate participants (n = 219) completed trait self-esteem and trait self-compassion measures, experienced an online ostracism simulation using Cyberball, and then completed a measure of attribution for the ostracism experience, a measure of state emotion regulation strategies, and a measure of state shame. Subsequently, participants engaged in an inclusion trial of Cyberball to measure prosocial behavior. Multiple linear regression analyses revealed that self-esteem and self-compassion positively predicted emotion reappraisal, but self-compassion did not significantly predict emotion acceptance. Neither self-compassion nor self-esteem predicted external attribution of the ostracism event, but both self-compassion and self-esteem positively predicted internal attribution of the ostracism. Furthermore, both self-compassion and self-esteem negatively predicted a shame response to ostracism, with self-compassion showing stronger negative predictive power of shame. Finally, neither self-compassion nor self-esteem significantly influenced participants' prosocial response to ostracism. Results, limitations, and implications for clinical practice and research are discussed.

Publication Statement

Copyright is held by the author. User is responsible for all copyright compliance.


Received from ProQuest

Rights holder

Russell Anderson

File size

153 p.

File format





Counseling psychology