Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and Brexit
Many people seem to be feeling an underlying sense of doom and gloom, or even anxiety and depression as the prospect of Brexit looms closer. Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is recommended by NICE as the therapy of choice for Anxiety and Depression. A lot of us appear to be having a bit of a rough time at the moment, and it would be surprising if we weren’t affected to an extent by a worry that we could be entering a severe downturn in the UK economy, problems with travel and so on. So how does CBT suggest that we can manage these feelings?
CBT, Brexit and being realistic
Although the current posturing by politicians can lead us to think that a no-deal Brexit is inevitable, there is still a chance that it may not happen. There are forces on both the leave and remain side that is in full motion to push their agenda, and on top of this, the Prime Minister has problems getting support for her plan for her part. The fact is that change will come, and CBT can help manage the anxiety and depression that can come with worrying about the outcome, job security and finances.
Further, some reports suggest Brexit seems to have increased hate crime and xenophobia, and many feel that leaving the EU appears to have legitimised racism. To address this aspect, it can be helpful to study the various reports and statistics which show that this is not the case.
CBT, Brexit and Living Abroad
CBT helps you be more realistic about your worry and anxiety and depression in general as well as around Brexit. For those of you who are EU nationals living in the UK or UK nationals living in other EU nations, you may have additional worries about post-Brexit life. However, there is still the possibility of averting problems which you may be worried about as the UK and the rest of the EU thrash out final arrangements for such circumstances.
You also need to remember that both the UK and the other EU countries will not benefit from a problematic Brexit as essential macro and microeconomics are in play including jobs on both sides, and it is in everyone’s best interests to resolve difficulties efficiently and smoothly.
CBT, Brexit and Children
Children whose experience has not yet included living in a country in a crisis may have very unrealistic fears, anxiety and depression about what may happen. Although there is no guarantee that the UK will not be isolated (but probably unlikely as seen above), you can reassure them that in the end, governments in the EU tend to strive to improve life for their citizens and the politicians involved are trying to do the best for us in the UK and the rest of the EU. We have to accept this fact and try to focus more on areas of our lives that we are more likely to be able to influence more.
Change is coming and being excessively worried about it can be helped by CBT. One question you can start asking is ‘Can I do anything about it’? If the answer is ‘Yes’ then ‘What can I do’? If it’s ‘No’ then you would do better to focus on something more useful, exciting or fun! If this feels too difficult to manage, then a CBT Therapist can help.