What is group therapy?
Group Therapy is a type of psychotherapy that includes at least one, if not two, mental health specialists who conduct therapy within a group dynamic. As the group progresses, the group dynamic may encourage individuals to connect with and feel supported by one another. Group therapy is typically focused on a particular theme, such as addressing social anxiety, grief or loss, sadness or depression, or coping with trauma.
Individuals who suffer from mental health concerns in their every day lives may derive immense benefit from attending a group therapy program. During group therapy sessions, issues such as substance use, family dynamics, domestic violence, anxiety, eating disorders, communication problems, and sorrow over losing a loved one are addressed and navigated in a therapeutic context.
Individuals in a Group Therapy Session discussing their challenging encounters in life
Principles of group therapy
Irvin D. Yalom delineates the central therapeutic beliefs that have originated from individuals who have participated group therapy. His book, The Theory and Practice of Group Psychotherapy, states that the goals of group therapy are to instill hope and altruism, impart information, foster group cohesiveness, cultivate progress in socialization practices, enhance interpersonal learning, and facilitate catharsis.
How can group therapy benefit individuals?
Participants of group therapy often find the process and experience to be satisfying and substantial. Group therapy may function as a support system for individuals seeking to improve their mental wellbeing. Other participants often support group members by listening to other participants’ experiences, providing empathy and care, offering validation, and generating new ideas for how to navigate challenging, shared circumstances and life experiences.
Listening and talking to others can help us feel less alone. Despite that countless people encounter mental health issues, only a few of us choose to publicly voice our struggles. Group therapy is highly-effective as there is open and honest communication between members. While participants may start as strangers, they soon become a valuable and trusted source of support to one another. If you feel as though this could be a supportive experience for you, contact us today and to register for one of our group therapy programs.