Relationship between Future Orientation and Pain Severity in Fibromyalgia Patients: Self-Compassion as a Coping Mechanism

Jul 22, 2019

m_coverIn a recent issue of the journal Social Work, published by NASW and Oxford University Press, researchers revealed their findings from a study that examined the relationship between future orientation and fibromyalgia-related pain severity in a sample of 287 adults with fibromyalgia.

Specifically, the authors examined dimensions of self-compassion (for example, self-kindness, isolation, mindfulness) as possible mechanisms through which future orientation might be associated with pain severity. The results of conducting a multiple mediator test with 10,000 bootstraps indicated that the significant negative association between future orientation and pain severity was mediated through one specific self-compassion dimension, namely, isolation.

The article concludes with a discussion of the implications of the present findings for working with fibromyalgia patients, specifically the potential value of social workers working with fibromyalgia patients to build future orientation as a resilience factor to combat pain severity. Also discussed is the value of working with patients to develop a sustainable social support system that can disrupt experiences of social isolation and disconnectedness from others, and which appear to contribute to greater pain severity.


The journal Social Work is a benefit of NASW membership. It is available online or, at a member’s request, in print. Children & Schools, Health & Social Work and Social Work Research are available by subscription at a discounted rate for NASW members, either online or in print. You can find out more about the journals and subscriptions at this link.

How Children Learn to Regulate Their Emotions

How Children Learn to Regulate Their Emotions

“Emotional intelligence is a term used to describe a person’s ability to understand, interpret, express and manage their own emotions, and to navigate interpersonal relationships with awareness, empathy and an appreciation for the emotional experiences of others,”...

The Intersection of Psychedelics and Mental Health Treatment

The Intersection of Psychedelics and Mental Health Treatment

By Sue Coyle The use of psychedelics for healing is not new. There is evidence that ancient civilizations throughout the world used psychedelics for a variety of reasons for a very long time, extending well into the modern era. In fact, in the 1950s and first half of...