From Wired Science Blog:

When faced with hardship and failure, people fall roughly into two groups: those who “roll with life’s punches, facing failures and problems with grace,” and those who “dwell on calamities, criticize themselves and exaggerate problems.”

What differentiates these people? And how to help dwellers turn into rollers? The answers, suggest a study published in this month’s Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, don’t involve self-esteem — the target of many behavioral interventions — but rather self-compassion: the ability to forgive yourself, to see your failings as universal rather than uniquely personal, and to see bitterness and anger in a detached manner.

See the May 2007 issue of the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology for the complete article.