Being a financial advisor can be stressful work. The work of one is more than the spreadsheets and the numbers. One wrong move from a financial advisor can immediately wipe out his client’s entire savings. This mistake can cause a tremendous amount of stress to them. Aside from the stress, some advisors also experience anxiety, insomnia, self-doubt, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
According to a study, financial crises also negatively affect their emotional stability. During the 2008 financial crisis, many financial advisors suffered from various mental health disorders. One academic paper published stated that 93% of them suffered from PTSD. From that number, 40% of it displayed severe symptoms of the illness. The reason for this was that these people managed vast amounts of assets – an average value of $20 million to $40 million.
With the rise of the stock market transactions nowadays, there is a significant possibility that more financial advisors will experience PTSD in case a financial crisis occurs. In that case, listed below are some of the best treatments for financial advisors with PTSD:
- Cognitive Processing Therapy
Cognitive Processing Therapy is a treatment which focuses on facing your feelings and troubles. At the start of CBT, all the traumatic events which led to your PTSD will be tackled. Once you have determined all of these negative causes, you will then be tasked to write it in detail, not to make you relive this experience, but instead to guide you in recognizing your realities. Lastly, your therapist will assist you in creating ways to live through your trauma.
There are different kinds of CBT. Two of these include:
- Exposure Therapy– If you have been avoiding events, this type of intervention will help you control your fears by exposing yourselves to the memory of your trauma. Your therapist will ensure that you feel that you are in a safe space and environment. The kind of exposure in this approach includes writing, drawing (imagery), and visiting people or places which remind them of their trauma. This method of exposure will help them gradually become less sensitive over it in time.
- Cognitive Restructuring– People often remember their traumatic experiences differently. Hence, it is unavoidable that they feel guilty or shameful with this. This intervention helps them look at their negative experience in a new and more realistic perspective.
2. Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing
The EMDR is a type of treatment which does not require the patient to tell your therapist about the details of your traumatic experience. Instead, it makes you remember your trauma while you listen or watch your therapist do something. It can be in the form of making a sound, moving a hand, or flashing a light.
EMDR aims to transform the patient’s trauma into something positive. For example, once they remember their experiences, such as trading on the floor, it can now be associated to a relaxing blinking light instead of a stressor.
3. Stress Inoculation Training
Stress Inoculation Training, also referred to as SIT, can be done by yourself or in a group. Financial advisors are advised to do it together. This way, the approach to be done can be more personalized with regards to financial stock market downfall.
SIT focuses on changing an individual’s technique on dealing with the stress from their respective traumatic event. This practice does not require the patients to go into detail about what happened to them. SIT instead comes up with several breathing techniques and meditation techniques to stop negative thoughts from entering your mind. These exercises aim to relax both the mind and the body.
There are numerous treatments to overcome a financial advisor’s PTSD. However, these are not enough. They also have to make sure to seek support from others to ensure their faster recovery.