Gerard Barnes, CEO of mental health treatment specialists Smart TMS, offers brand-new research on the psychological problems faced by the middle and upper classes

“If I had more money, I’d be much happier” is a statement made on a regular basis by millions of people up and down the country. It has long been assumed by those with a bit less that having a healthier bank account would solve all of their problems, but in reality, it seems that the old adage “money can’t buy you happiness” is in fact more accurate than we think.

It appears, then, as though having a thick wallet is not as beneficial for one’s mental state as once thought. Smart TMS, a company which specialises in treating psychological problems such as depression, anxiety, OCD and PTSD with non-medicinal and non-invasive methods, has just conducted research around this topic, and the results are astounding.

Smart TMS’ body of independent evidence shows that the common misconception “money buys happiness” is most definitely not true. Over ONE in THREE middle class respondents have admitted to experiencing severe anxiety as a result of their professional or economic success, due to an internal compulsion to compare their status to others around them, while 29% say they are unable to discuss their problems in their circles, as they fear judgement from friends and family, and even professional discrimination at work.

This nationally representative data reveals that our social circles, which are typically seen as our own personal support networks, often cause more anxiety than relief. It also clearly highlights the stigma that still remains around mental health in the workplace.

•Over one third (34%) of the middle class admit to experiencing severe anxiety through comparing their success to others around them
•29% worry about what their friends or colleagues would say, if these peers were aware of their mental health problems
•Over 1 in 5 (21%) feel like they don’t have a right to be depressed because they are relatively successful and affluent
•29% think that it’s harder to discuss mental health problems in their social circle
•29% of the middle class stated their job gives them a lot of stress and anxiety that they do not know how to manage
•22% of respondents said that they are too busy to think about their mental health, despite having consistent symptoms of anxiety/depression
•14% stated they’d like to see someone about their mental health but don’t think their boss would give them the time off work
•Over 1 in 5 (21%) would like to see someone about their mental health but worry that treatment would take too long
Gerard Barnes, CEO of Smart TMS, offers the following commentary:

“While the middle and upper classes are typically seen as well-off and comfortable, the stresses of their lifestyle can induce severe anxiety, and the obligation to support this imbalanced work and leisure is extremely detrimental. Many people are also reporting an increase in a desire to be away from other people and social situations. These are clear signs of depression and anxiety, which are often characterised by low self-esteem, an increase in substance abuse and a loss of the ability to carry out simple functions without overthinking.

At Smart TMS, we recognise that many Brits may be unaware that what they are feeling constitutes as depression and anxiety. There are also many middle-class Brits who are attempting to repress or hold in these overwhelming feelings of depression, because they simply do not think they have the right to be depressed due to their social or economic status. More needs to be done to help people recognise symptoms of mental health conditions within their own behaviours and respond accordingly. It is also vital for everybody, even those who are affluent, to understand that they are just as prone to depression, if not more so, and need to seek help and treatment.”


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