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The Power of Re-framing a Diagnosis

cognitive psychology, abnormal psychology, clinical psychology, biological psychology
Mental Health Diagnosis

Today’s episode of The Psychology World Podcast is The Effects of Reframing a Diagnosis so we’ll looking at clinical and abnormal psychology today.

In the world, there is a lot of judgement as well as stigma. This is especially true in the case of mental health because unlike physical health, people don’t rally around you and they just abandon you.

In addition, if people know you’re going to therapy then people will judge you and you will be subjected to stigma.

This is a massive problem in psychotherapy and treatment in general because this is a barrier to treatment.

As why go to treatment if you’re going to be subjected to so much stigma?

As always, I encourage you to go to treatment if you want because it may end up changing your life for the better. Allowing you to possibly live a better and healthier life.

Additionally, even if you or your clients made it to therapy (that alone is a massive achievement so a massive well done to you) they could still feel weak and disempowered.

This is where changing or reframing the diagnosis comes in because it is the job of the therapist to reframe the client’s perception of their mental health diagnosis, so they fill

empowered as well as strong.

There are many ways how you can do this and I’m not going to tell you how to do it because everyone is different, and each mental condition requires a different approach potentially.

However, I will say this and hopefully this will tell you everything you need to know:

If you only focus on the negatives, then you will never see the positives of the diagnosis.

For example, the diagnosis could allow you to get treatment, support, and many other benefits that you didn’t have before, and most of all you aren’t suffering in silence anymore.

Overall, reframing your client’s perception of their diagnosis is critical to breaking the stigma, this goes for both self-stigma and societal stigma.

Finally, by helping our clients change their perceptions, we can increase their self-efficacy as well as their self-esteem. Yet the most important benefit is that they can become be active in the recovery process. As well as they can be role models for other people to help them break stigma.

I hope you’re enjoyed today’s abnormal psychology episode of The Psychology World Podcast if you want to learn more then check out Abnormal Psychology 2nd Edition and consider signing up for my mailing list. To get your FREE 8 book boxset.

Have a great day,


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Sickel, A. E., Seacat, J. D., & Nabors, N. A. (2019). Mental health stigma: Impact on mental health treatment attitudes and physical health. Journal of Health Psychology, 24, 586–599.

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