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What is Cognitive Behaviour Therapy and how it can Benefit your Finances

11th January 2018 Print

One in six UK adults is diagnosed with at least one mental illness annually. These illnesses may range from bipolar disorders, anxiety and depression to more severe cases such as schizophrenia. Over the decades Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) has proved effective in remedying most of these cases.

Unlike most psychotropic drugs, CBT is a form of psychotherapy that mainly builds on thoughts and behavioural patterns of the patient to remedy their condition. Let us take a look at what cognitive behaviour therapy is and how can it can benefit your finances.

What is Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)?

Did you know that thinking patterns, attitudes, and expectations learned or acquired over time may influence your perception and reaction to certain issues? Consequences of negative thinking patterns and expectations result in illnesses such as anxiety and depression.

Negative thinking patterns can also have an effect on how patients manage their finances, and how they make financial decisions.

In this context, Cognitive Behaviour Therapy helps patients understand that their thoughts, attitude and perception affect the way they feel. It helps them learn to manage and change false, distressing beliefs such as “over generalising” and “catastrophic thinking”.

It assists the patient in understand that their reactions to events are dependent on what they make and tell themselves of the event.

CBT trains the patient to be in charge of their thoughts, which helps many people living with bipolar disorder. This relatively improves their behaviour, perception and control negative reactions that may cause mental illnesses. 

How can Cognitive Behaviour Therapy Improve Your Finances?

Cognitive Therapy is more of a scientific-based talking therapy. It is centred on the theory that human behaviour is acquired and learned from the environment, experiences and neighbouring humans. Therefore, it is possible for them to learn new behavioural patterns that are positive and beneficial.

In many cases, life events can affect how people manage their finances. This is especially true with people dealing with depression or living with a bipolar disorder. Cognitive behaviour therapy can, for instance, identify the triggering patterns that may affect manic spending episodes.

Overspending can also be used as a coping mechanism by those dealing with depression. Sufferers also have the tendency to lose track of their finances because of certain changes in their brain chemistry. Cognitive behaviour therapy can identify which patterns are the root cause of their overspending and tackle them during treatment sessions. 

Since CBT is regarded as a legitimate form of treatment, you can get benefits and assistance for treatments, such as ESA Allowance or PIP payments. You will be required to mention you are having CBT in the treatments section if you have to fill a health questionnaire for benefits.

What are Some of the Other Benefits of Cognitive Therapy to Patients?

Lowers Incidences of Depression: the ability of cognitive therapy to change a patient's way of thinking from negative to neutral can greatly lower the depression that may result from confronting various challenges.

Cognitive behavioural therapy is an effective treatment plan to deal with acute depression and postpartum depression. Alternatively, the therapy can be used alongside antidepressants and supplemental medication plans for patients suffering from bipolar.

Reduces Addictive Behaviour and Substance Abuse: most individuals unknowingly fall victim to addictions and substance abuse such as gambling, smoking, alcoholism. Addiction takes over an individual and makes them a slave simply because their mind is not able to resist the urge to indulge.

CBT has, however, proved to be an effective treatment plan to withdraw from these addictions, as posted in the Oxford Journal of Public Health. The therapy offers coping skills to help even ex-smokers deal with relapses.

Reduces Anxiety: being in charge of your thoughts and perception helps individuals living with anxiety cope with tense situations that may otherwise cause anxiety.

Cognitive therapy helps patients learn to deal with various types of anxiety, which may include social anxiety disorder, anxiety at work, obsessive-compulsive disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder and generalized anxiety disorder.

The therapy is effective as it also trains patients on various relaxation practices they can undertake when caught up in demanding situations.

Improves Self-Esteem and Confidence: low self-esteem and lack of self-confidence are all mainly caused by negative thoughts and attitude towards oneself. Cognitive behavioural therapy teaches individuals to build positive expectations, thoughts, and to develop positive affirmations. 

On that Note

Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT) is a more effective treatment plan as it focuses on healing the mind. As great and effective as it is, it may be associated with minor side effects such distress, which comes as a result of being confronted with your challenges and anxieties first hand. It has, however, proved effective not only for mental illness patients but also for individuals dealing with various addictions.