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

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The present study examined the relationship between future orientation and fibromyalgia-related pain severity in a sample of 287 adults with fibromyalgia. Specifically, 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. 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.