- Group therapy is a kind of talk therapy or psychotherapy
- It consists of one or more therapists and five or more patients
- Each patient participates and shares their experiences to help others learn and grow
Psychotherapy, or talk therapy, comes in all shapes and sizes. There is a type to treat every sort of mental health issue and life change circumstances. Many people think of one-on-one therapy sessions when they think of psychotherapy, but group therapy can often be more effective.
Group therapy is a terrific, extremely beneficial option for many mental health concerns. This guide explores group therapy, whom it helps most, some of its most powerful benefits, and how to get the most out of your sessions.
Group Therapy and Whom It Helps
Group therapy is when one or more therapists lead a group of five or more patients in a psychotherapy session. The intention is to bring people together who share similar healthcare concerns so they can learn from and support each other.
Group therapy helps more people access mental health care in rural areas and other places where it is scarce. It is typically used for common issues many people have to deal with at some point in life. These include:
- Weight loss
- Substance abuse disorders
- Chronic pain
- Cultural trauma
- Anger management
- Domestic violence
These issues affect many people, and getting together to talk about them can help people feel less alone. There are many other benefits to group therapy.
Benefits of Group Therapy
A group full of people who understand what you’re going through can be extremely helpful in the healing process. Someone will have a solution you haven’t thought of or some words of encouragement when you need them most.
There are also some more clinical benefits of group therapy, such as:
Providing a Sounding Board
Mental health issues can have you questioning your every decision and overthinking every part of your life. Group therapy provides a sounding board for your thoughts and feelings in everyday situations. It can be helpful to hear other people’s thoughts on your situation when you don’t know what to do next or if you’re making the right decisions.
Helps You Learn About Yourself
Group therapy sessions help you see yourself through other people’s eyes. Each person sharing their story is also like a mirror, reflecting some of your concerns and helping to uncover blind spots that may be keeping you from making the best decisions.
Hearing how other people in similar situations have overcome their issues can be highly motivational. It helps to stimulate new ideas to solve your problems and fortifies healthier trains of thought in the future.
Watching the people in your group succeed and overcome their issues instills a sense of hope in everyone else. It’s one thing to hear about all the good things ahead, but it is much more powerful to see it happening before you.
The Restoration of the Correct Primary Family Group
Having a tough childhood can make life as an adult harder. A group therapy environment simulates a parent/child relationship with siblings. When group therapy relationships are healthy, they can help heal old wounds from troubled adolescence.
Each person in group therapy gains their own personal set of benefits for their situation. Some people use group therapy in conjunction with private sessions. Others use it alone. There is no right or wrong way to take therapy.
How to Get the Most out of Group Therapy
Group therapy has more people involved, but you still have to put work in to see results. Here are a few simple things you can do to get the most out of your group therapy sessions:
Go in with an Open Attitude
Be prepared to engage with the group and actively listen to other participants. Seek out lessons to learn and new ideas to help better your life. Go in with a positive attitude, intent on betterment.
Respect Group Boundaries
Confidentiality and anonymity are big deals in therapy. Every group has boundaries and rules for participation. Respect these rules to keep the atmosphere open and clear for growth.
Be Open to Feedback
Feedback has to be received calmly and with interest. It is a chance to grow past a painful spot in life and become more at peace with yourself.
Group therapy is usually made up of exercises and activities designed to help patients learn more about their condition and deal with life. Participating in all parts of treatment is necessary to get the most out of it. There will be days that you don’t feel like participating, and that’s OK – as long as it isn’t all the time.
Sharing your experiences and feelings is the hardest part of therapy for many people. It can help to remember that your experiences may help someone else. The act of helping others helps you as well. It makes you feel great and helps boost your self-confidence.
Group therapy was intentionally created to be a place to reveal your authenticity and share your experiences with other people in your shoes. The more you participate, the more you gain.
Group therapy is helpful in many mental health predicaments and life-changing events. The benefits are many and varied. If you enjoy the camaraderie of others dealing with the same issues and bouncing ideas off people you respect, group therapy could be what you’re looking for.
Learn to Use the Benefits of Group Therapy in Your Life
Group therapy easily fits into anyone’s life schedule. The Counseling Center Group can help you learn how to control your emotions and change your behaviors. We provide therapies for groups, couples, individuals, and families.
The Counseling Center Group is dedicated to helping you live a life you love. We are committed to providing relatively short-term treatments to achieve positive, long-lasting results. Our therapists use structured, evidence-based methods to efficiently help you reach realistic goals. You can learn more about therapy in general when you contact us today.