What is the real price of therapy?

eleos counselling_the real cost of therapyHave you ever wondered about the real cost, of therapy? Or rather how much does it cost if you have a problem and don’t come to therapy, or support your employee in accessing therapy? A recent report by the mental health foundation; the U.K.’s leading charity working with the needs of people with mental health problems, shine some light on this question.

Often as therapists, we are told that we cost too much, with the average price, locally in my area of £50 for a 50 minute session, one would feel quite justified in thinking that that is a reasonable hourly rate, considering the type of training, therapist undergoes, as well as supervision, continuing professional development (CPD and maintaining an ethical and competent practice; all of which are mandatory requirements for psychotherapist /counsellors.

How much does not come to therapy cost the UK?


So how much does it cost the UK in a whole not to come to therapy? According to the mental health foundation 3 in every 10 employees, will have a mental health problem, in any one year.  According to the office of national statistics the average small company employs around 250 people. So that is 75 employees each year, in an average small company, with a mental health problem. It’s hard to work out how much productivity is lost, but having 75 of your employees suffering with a mental health problem each year is staggering.

The real cost of mental health!


According to the mental health foundation report, stress-related sickness accounts for £4 billion worth of lost revenue, for UK Inc. Of course is hard to really quantify this as many people suffer in silence. Having a mental health problem is not like having a broken leg, there are no visible signs, but there are definitely effects.

If we look at work-related stress, this is more common than one would think, with a recent survey carried out, canvassing 270 company line managers in which 88% of them claim to have moderate or high levels of stress in their work, and with 39% of those surveyed claiming to have an increasing level of stress over the past year. Although stress is a necessary part of everyday life. Without a doubt, some level of stress is good, for us as humans. Moreover, on the other hand, excess stress can be the principal cause of many other health problems, apart from the obvious effects such as, impaired judgement, lack of decision-making and exhaustion, stress can be the start of other health problems, such as depression.

So how does this all relate to therapy, if companies, line managers, and employees were more enlightened into the benefits of the talking therapy generally, this could save companies a great deal of money. One only has to look at the figures above to see this has validity, supporting someone with the cost of therapy, furthermore, this can send a big message to employees, inasmuch as they are would be supported through mental illness, and thus be ready to talk about this more openly, if they feel they can come forward and asked for help, reducing the stigma of mental health.

Simply being heard, by a non-judgemental, compassionate, professionally trained therapist can help people quickly recover from mental health problems.

The real financial cost to therapy?


Anecdotal evidence would say that most people generally need roughly 6 to 12 sessions before they feel as if they’re able to cope with the problem, whether that be stress, marital or relational breakup or a recent bereavement or loss.

Simply doing the maths, on average, 12 sessions will cost £600. The loss in productivity, for small companies, for a person who has a mental health problem alone must be double this, if the person with a mental health problem is making mistakes, and having to be carried by other members of his or her team, this could have a knock-on effect, in morale of others around the person with the mental health problem.

In an ideal world companies would have an “on call a professional counsellor/psychotherapist” who would look after the mental health of the workforce.


Just doing the maths for an average company of 250 people, 75 of which have a mental health problem, offering them psychotherapy/ counselling for 12 sessions a year would cost on average £45,000

Time to rethink?

Maybe it’s time to rethink our attitudes towards psychotherapy,/counselling?




Can birth order dictate your chances in life?

The idea of, your place in your family dictating your chances in life, re-emerge with several new studies, looking into the effects of birth order, in families.

sibling rivalry_eleoscounsellingFamily order nature or nurture?

Francis Galton, a half cousin of Charles Darwin, first coined the phrase “nature or nurture”. Galton, in 1874 suggested that it was only the firstborn sons that would exclusively, become England’s finest scientists. This may well in the case in Galton’s time. Indeed, firstborn sons would always be the air to any title, money or land in the 1800s. Indeed, if one had been born a first son one may have been raised with a sense of entitlement, to such things, not so today?

Family order dictates your mental health?

One such study looking at the effects of birth order looked at survival rates; one only has to look at the animal kingdom to see that birth order can often have life or death consequences. A study carried out in Norway, which looked at 600,000 people, discovered that the oldest sibling is a greater risk of committing suicide than his or her sibling, with the likelihood of suicide greater in men than in women.

Sibling ranking and IQ?

A further study carried out of 250,000 Norwegian army conscripts, found that the eldest brother in a sibling group has a 2.3 higher average IQ, compared to his younger siblings. An interesting caveat to this study, is the research carried out by Petter Khristiansen, at the University of Oslo. He looked at males whose older brother had died. He found that this affects the IQ ranking of the surviving, next in line sibling; the study’s results suggested that when one moves in sibling ranking, ones IQ rises. Khristiansen, suggests in his study, that this is something to do with University places.

Family order even makes a difference in your  Immune system!

Furthermore, a study carried out by Matthew Perzannowski at the University of Columbia in New York, found that children, aged between four and five, with older siblings, are less likely to go to the emergency room due to an asthma attack, it is thought that a principle called hygiene hypothesis occurs, in effect being exposed to viruses, bacteria and fungus in early childhood may increase the immune system, effectively younger siblings more exposed to pathogens, brought into the home by older brothers or sisters, thus less prone to allergies than their older family member.


Queue rage: a 21st-century anger problem?

Traffic on Upper Woburn Place in London, England

Traffic on Upper Woburn Place in London, England

Have you been in a queue of traffic, you read the signs, you get the right lane, but then there’s always somebody cutting into the lane at the last minute. Does it annoy you? You’re not alone. When you start feeling your temper becoming frayed because of someone pushing in line, this is an example of a primary instinct one of suspicion.

So what’s going on when I get angry?

Fundamentally, it taps into, what is often called the 3Rs (resources, relationships and residency) the three primary reasons for the feelings of anger, and often rage in people.

Had does someone jumping queues affect me?

Primarily, jumping queue, is seen as an assault on our resources; basically the road is our resource. This gives birth to what is often called “queue rage”. Dr Richard Larson has spent two decades studying the psychology of people waiting in a queue. Furthermore, he, and his colleagues have found that people don’t mind waiting even for prolonged times, as long as the queue is perceived as fair; first-come first-served. Feeling angry about this goes way back to childhood, remember that kid who was always jumping the queue in front of you and the teacher would not see it and  the dinner lady would certainly not.

Road rage can sometimes get out of hand!

Incidences such as, waiting in a traffic queue can often cause road rage incidences, unfortunately people have died in such rages, when things become out of hand.


The feeling of mistrust, is an automatic brain response to unfamiliar people; such is the guy who’s just jumped in front of you, after you’ve waited 20 minutes in line. The survival mechanism of the brain, the limbic system, produces feelings that have evolved over millions of years and are unlikely to go away soon. Although we like to think our brains, as modern, they’re not, they have simply not evolved to trust people, instantaneously.  All you have to think about is your front door bell ringing late at night and somebody making a collection for a not-for-profit group, your response might be is this a scam. We as humans are very adept looking at faces and deciding if we can trust the person wearing the face, although trusted is often felt as instantaneous, it is generated through a complex process that links the feeling part of the brain to the thinking part, of the brain (the limbic system to the prefrontal cortex).

Is getting angry really worth it?

So next time you’re in a queue don’t let your limbic system hijack your feelings. Patients, certainly will win out at the end of the day.