Therapy can be a great and powerful component of a healing and recovery journey. An ideal therapist can hold space for your thoughts and feelings while gently guiding you toward positive change and growth.
A good therapist strives to understand and honor each client as an individual so that they can tailor their approach to each unique experience. Identifying the right therapist for you can enhance your mental health care and treatment.
Similarly, your therapist may facilitate or recommend group therapy in addition to one on one therapy sessions. Group therapy offers additional benefits that traditional therapy may not offer. Individual and group therapy sessions can provide you with extra support and motivation for your recovery journey.
What Is Group Therapy?
Group therapy is similar to individual therapy in the sense that it provides members with a safe space to listen and share their experiences. Group therapy is slightly different from traditional therapy since there is the added component of community building.
Receiving therapy among new people with similar stories can help you truly see and believe that you are not alone. There is room for everyone to speak from a space that may be harder to express with loved ones, peers, and other important people in your life. Group therapy provides an example of healthy and reciprocal social interactions that honor everyone’s voice and experience.
What Are the Benefits of Group Therapy?
A healthy community and genuine support are two essential components of healing and recovery of the mind and body. Having healthy connections can improve your progress whether you are overcoming addiction, managing a mental health condition, loving someone through a difficult experience, or anywhere in between.
There are several unique benefits of group therapy:
- Experience reduction in physiological symptoms
- Improve stress management skills
- Learn healthy communication skills
- Develop and embrace a sense of community
Healing in a Community
Most clients who go through group therapy report a decrease in their mental health symptoms. Healing in a community makes it easier to manage and process difficult emotions. Group therapy grants each member the space to express themselves in ways that may be challenging with loved ones who have different experiences and perspectives. Feeling free to express yourself and receive feedback will help you identify and release some of your stressors so that you can move forward.
Similarly, it can also be helpful that a strong group therapy specialist will provide the group with actionable and healthy coping skills for the specific challenges you may share. Considering these new techniques and putting them into practice can foster deeper unity in the group. It can be helpful to hear how these new skills are impacting your fellow group members, leaving room for
Group therapy allows for each person to express themselves freely, hear others’ stories and share helpful feedback they may have. This balanced exchange between individuals models healthy communication skills that can be practiced at home, school, or work. Improving communication skills can improve the relationships you care most about.
Group therapy has been proven to benefit members just as well as individual therapy. Although it may seem daunting, seeing a diverse group of new people who are experiencing similar challenges to you can be very inspiring and assuring. Group therapy can be a great way to see that healing does not have to happen in isolation. No matter how many mistakes you have made or how hard your challenges may seem, there will always be someone willing to listen and understand you. Simply knowing that you have a space to go where you are supported can be vital to your healing process.
What Defines Good Group Therapy?
Good group therapy starts with a present, proactive, and compassionate therapist or counselor.
A good group therapy network is usually defined by the following:
- Facilitated by a highly trained and well-rounded individual
- Strong group dynamics
- Actively engage and unify therapy group members
- Honors feedback
A strong therapist or counselor understands the value of group dynamics. A qualified specialist will get to know each member well enough to gauge how each person will take to the group therapy program. This careful screening creates the space for each group member to feel welcome and heard.
Similarly, a qualified specialist will make it a point to uphold and maintain strong group dynamics. Facilitating when necessary and allowing the members to speak and share as much as they are comfortable creates a strong balance for everyone.
Respect and Trust
Although forcing members to talk is not necessary, establishing an atmosphere of respect, compassion, and drive is important. When the group members see and feel the level of trust that is being built, more people will naturally share and speak when they are called to.
Lastly, the group therapy facilitator should be open to feedback. It is an essential part of the healing process for each group member to feel comfortable with sharing feedback. It is also important that the specialist is open to feedback on the group itself and the experiences each person may be having. Remaining open to constructive and honest feedback will further deepen the group’s ability to trust you and their fellow group members.
Group therapy can be a great addition to your healing journey. There are free, virtual, and in-person options for your group therapy needs.
Identifying good therapy groups starts with knowing the components that would make therapy feel best for you. It can be helpful to partner with an individual therapist to identify group therapy programs that would best support your personal healing goals. It is also possible to find local or virtual group therapy options that fit your needs as well. Contact Mindfuli for access to our trusted and caring medical professionals for your mental health and addiction recovery needs. You can expect to be connected with a strong match within 72 hours of the initial outreach. Our goal is to connect you with the people and resources to inspire lasting change. Call us at (866) 973-4415 today.