A new study repudiates gratitude interventions as a treatment for depression.
The original intention of positive psychology was to expand mental health, not to cure mental illness. But wannabes self-help gurus, and some mental health professionals, hawk positive psychology interventions as a panacea for clinical disorders.
As the study authors note, gratitude interventions have value (for example, improving relationships) — but not much for the treatment of depression or anxiety.
Consistent with past reviews, we found gratitude interventions had a medium effect when compared with waitlist-only conditions, but only a trivial effect when compared with putatively inert control conditions involving any kind of activity.
In other words, gratitude interventions didn’t fair better than other behavioral activities used as controls.
A remaining controversy is how the limited efficacy of gratitude interventions compares to popular antidepressant medications.
Withholding earned pay for 2-week or 1-month “pay periods” is a vestige of days gone by, serving the funds-holder but penalizing the earner.
While some companies already have introduced on-time (on-time = real-time) payment as an opt-in service paid for by employees and/or their employers, it inevitably will become the standard. This is an important option to be considered by employers genuinely committed to their employees’ financial wellness. But it only makes sense if the employees incur no fees. Employers generally don’t charge employees for other payroll services, just as they don’t return dividends to employees when they’ve managed to realize savings (say, through increased payroll system efficiencies, contracting with more cost-effective providers, and so forth.)
There is a cost… in service provider fees and the loss of “float” (the interest employers earn on the money they’re withholding — big money, especially during periods of higher interest rates). This needs to be built into employers’ financial models.
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