University of Houston associate professor of clinical psychology, Matthew Gallagher, has added his voice to a debate that spans the ages — the importance of hope. Gallagher reports in Behavior Therapy that hope is a trait that predicts resilience and recovery from anxiety disorders.
The concept of hope has long stirred opinion. In the sixteenth century, Martin Luther celebrated its power, claiming “Everything that is done in this world is done by hope.” Two centuries later, Benjamin Franklin warned that “He that lives upon hope will die fasting.” Into the conversation, Gallagher reports that psychotherapy can result in clear increases in hope and that changes in hope are associated with changes in anxiety symptoms.
More than pure philosophy, Gallagher has empirical evidence. His study examined the role of hope in predicting recovery in a clinical trial of 223 adults in cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) for one of four common anxiety disorders: social anxiety disorder, panic disorder, generalized anxiety disorder and obsessive-compulsive disorder.
“In reviewing recovery during CBT among the diverse clinical presentations, hope was a common element and a strong predictor of recovery,” said Gallagher who reports that moderate-to-large increases in hope and changes in hope were consistent across the five separate CBT treatment protocols.
In terms of psychotherapy, hope represents the capacity of patients to identify strategies or pathways to achieve goals and the motivation to effectively pursue those pathways. Significantly, the results of this study indicate that hope gradually increases during the course of CBT, and increases in hope were greater for those in active treatment than for those in the waitlist comparison. The magnitude of these changes in hope were consistent across different CBT protocols and across the four anxiety disorders examined, which underscores the broad relevance of instilling hope as an important factor in promoting recovery during psychotherapy.
“Our results can lead to a better understanding of how people are recovering and it’s something therapists can monitor. If a therapist is working with a client who isn’t making progress, or is stuck in some way, hope might be an important mechanism to guide the patient forward toward recovery,” said Gallagher.
Hope is closely related to other positive psychology constructs, such as self-efficacy and optimism, that have also been shown to have clear relevance to promoting resilience to and recovery from emotional disorders, said Gallagher.
Gallagher is the first author of the paper. The research is part of a larger project examining the efficacy of CBT for anxiety disorders led by David H. Barlow, founder and director emeritus of the Boston University Center for Anxiety and Related Disorders.
Neisha used VA’s VetSuccess on Campus program to become more competitive in the job market https://t.co/FUjuu3WsnO #VeteransMonth2019
RT @RiceAthletics: It’s #All4Rice Friday!Show off your school pride by submitting your best game day photos at the link below for a chanc…
@lisavill2kidz We're sending good vibes your way, Lisa. Please let us know if you need anything while you're here.
CHI St. Luke's Health@CHI_StLukes
RT @sfoster23: I'm proud of our team representing @CHI_StLukes Health–Patients Medical Center at the #BayAreaHeartWalk earlier this month!…
Why has cutaneous squamous cell carcinoma been understudied historically?Our @DrNeilGross weighs in: https://t.co/VRXIsQZy1F @OncLive #hncsm #endcancer
Wok on Sunset, the latest craze from @RiceDining, is dishing out tofu, dumplings, tea eggs and more. Now open at North Servery. https://t.co/A3O4N8M6MN
Want to help put a smile on a patient’s face? Help spread holiday cheer by giving our kids a chance to win @Mattel toys. #SpreadJoywithToys with @speaknowforkids by nominating @TexasChildrens! https://t.co/YppxXZO8Wr https://t.co/8hZ5k4sRkB
Andrew Childress, Ph.D., with @BCMEthics tackles medical futility in this week's Policywise post. https://t.co/KKL6mC1fw1 #medicalfutility #ethics https://t.co/26EooFChb5
Happy Friday! Thank you to @KSFOrthopaedic for sending us this joke! If you have a favorite joke, send it to us and we might use it in a future post. #jokes #ThanksgivingJokes #funny https://t.co/jQsZxN7G1V
Our Dr. Cheng-En Hsieh explains why radiation-induced liver disease is an important factor to consider during #livercancer treatment: https://t.co/M18QvNAneT @cure_magazine #endcancer
RT @bcm_ocd: So excited to have Dr. Jeff Wood present the results of our NIH funded study examining personalized CBT vs. standard care CBT…
Today’s #VeteranOfTheDay is Army Veteran Louis D. Brinner, who served as a rifleman in Europe during WWII and turns 100 Nov. 22: https://t.co/g8CQSNuLTI
At @TexasChildrens, we know all about helping children and their families through stressful times like surgeries. Take a look at these helpful tools to use as you prepare for your child's surgery: https://t.co/4wyHxbjcxe https://t.co/xBp95faWly
Even though this lightweight material is full of holes, it's nearly as hard as diamond and stops bullets better than solid materials: https://t.co/N1QBG6C6yz https://t.co/XKyesrwt6c
A "silent heart attack" is caused by ischemia, a temporary blood shortage. Sometimes the shortage causes the pain of angina pectoris. But in other cases, there is no pain. These cases are called silent ischemia, or "silent heart attacks." https://t.co/UKu4mglkKJ