Intrapersonal Emotional Competence and Empathy: Factors and Connection Profiles in a Multicultural Sample



Relevance. Intrapersonal emotional competence - the ability to recognize, understand and regulate one's own emotional states - is traditionally considered as a factor in both the ontogenetic development of empathy and its situational manifestation. However, there is a question of different levels and nature of the sources of emotional competence and empathy deficits and, accordingly, different ways to compensate for them, which is of particular importance for the practice of developing empathy, including the professional context of psychological counseling and psychotherapy. Goal. The purpose of this study was to analyze the diversity of connections between empathy, alexithymia as an indicator of the deficit of emotional competence in relation to one's own feelings and psychological mindedness as an indicator of intentionality in relation to feelings and experiences. Materials and methods. On a combined sample of 1,123 people, including representatives of three cultures - Russia, Belarus, Armenia - data from the IRI questionnaire (empathy), TAS–20 (alexithymia) and «The psychological mindedness scale» were collected and analyzed. Results. The absence of significant negative connections of empathy with difficulties of awareness and identification of feelings, a stable significant positive connection with them of empathic personal distress, as well as externally oriented thinking with low empathy were found. 5 clusters have been identified, reflecting different variants of the connection between emotional competence and empathy. Conclusions. The conclusion is made about the relative independence of the influence of intentionality and competence/lack of emotional competence on empathy, as well as the need for further analysis of intentionality in the field of experiences and emotions.

General Information

Keywords: alexithymia, psychological mindedness, empathy, empathic personal distress, perspective–taking, empathy, empathic concern, emotional competence, lack of emotional competence, regulation of empathy, intentionality in the field of emotions and experiences

Journal rubric: Empirical Researches

Article type: scientific article


Acknowledgements. The authors are grateful to N.V. Kustova, N.I. Olifirovich (Republic of Belarus), the students and undergraduates of MSUPE and HSE who participated in data collection and analysis.

Received: 15.06.2023


For citation: Karyagina T.D., Chumakova M.A., Mazaeva E.S., Tomchuk M.A. Intrapersonal Emotional Competence and Empathy: Factors and Connection Profiles in a Multicultural Sample. Konsul'tativnaya psikhologiya i psikhoterapiya = Counseling Psychology and Psychotherapy, 2023. Vol. 31, no. 4, pp. 125–150. DOI: 10.17759/cpp.2023310407. (In Russ., аbstr. in Engl.)


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Information About the Authors

Tatyana D. Karyagina, PhD in Psychology, Associate Professor of the Department of Individual and Group Psychotherapy, Faculty of Counseling and Clinical Psychology, Moscow State University of Psychology and Education, online-school "Psychodemia", Moscow, Russia, ORCID:, e-mail:

Mariya A. Chumakova, PhD in Psychology, Associate professor, Faculty of Social Sciences, School of Psychology, HSE University, Moscow, Russia, ORCID:, e-mail:

Ekaterina S. Mazaeva, senior lecturer of the Department of Individual and Group Psychotherapy, Faculty of Counseling and Clinical Psychology, Moscow State University of Psychology and Education, Moscow, Russia, ORCID:, e-mail:

Marina A. Tomchuk, graduate of the Master's degree program «Children's and family psychotherapy» of the Faculty of Counseling and Clinical Psychology, Moscow State University of Psychology & Education, Moscow, Russia, ORCID:, e-mail:



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