Group therapy is an umbrella term for multiple different kinds of therapy that take place in a group setting. Rather than a free-flowing conversation, group therapy is led by a trained leader. Their job is to prompt discussion, create a safe space for members and encourage expression.
Understanding that they are not alone in their experiences, participants will be more willing to share their own journey with others. The members of the group can develop bonds with each other as they continue working towards their collective goal of a happier, healthier, and sustainable life. This process also allows for the participants to learn to trust each other, as many substance use disorders result in a lack of trust, even with family members and loved ones.
Our group therapy professionals are trained to pick up on some of the subconscious actions of the participants, and those actions can be telling as to their life experiences and problems with substance abuse. This can also lead to more detailed insights being revealed later on in one on one therapy sessions therefore allowing inner conflicts to be worked through.
It is completely normal to feel nervous about an upcoming group therapy session, however these are safe spaces, designed to help clients open up about their experiences, that are completely void of judgment. Everyone in the circle is going through their own struggles and so sharing creates a sense of kinship as well as a broader perspective through hearing other’s coping strategies.
Some of the group exercises that may take place are:
- Identifying and discussing the underlying triggers for addiction and substance abuse.
- What are your triggers? Exploring why understanding your triggers is so important in the overcoming of them.
- Talking about what you can do to prevent cravings.
- How will you deal with them when they occur?
- What will you do instead of drugs when you get those urges?
Making lists of significant events in your life. This is important when understanding patterns, habits and triggers. It can also help people to realize what formative events may have shaped their present.
- What are the worst moments in your life? What were the best?
- Are there any patterns you can identify within these events?
- Practicing meditation and breathing exercises
- Discussing where you are in your recovery journey.
- Are you proud of what you’ve accomplished? What would you like to see yourself accomplish in the future? Ask others what they would like to see you accomplish.
Perception and Perspective of Self
Learn about the neuroscience of addiction. Overcome the addiction by outsmarting it.
Perception and Perspective of Self. Those with addictions often suffer with low self-esteem and misunderstand other’s perceptions of them. By working through this a wider perspective of self can be created and explored that is based on reality rather than perception.
Acceptance and Commitment Therapy
Acceptance and commitment therapy, also known as ACT, is a type of therapy that focuses on acknowledging the power of all of the positive and negative forces of the past, accepting those as fact, and committing to a better future. Accept what is out of your control and commit to action that improves and enriches your life.
“You can’t stop the waves, but you can learn to surf.” – Jon Zabat-Kinn
- What are some of the excuses you have made up for yourself?
- Identify thoughts, emotions, and distractions that serve as a barrier to your valued living
- Open up to internal experiences – don’t give in to the pain that you feel, allow yourself to accept it for what it is and learn to move on from it
- Commit to things that make your life better
- Value each day, and understand how much progress can be made if each day is valued
- Look at everything you do, each action you take, as something that could either worsen or improve your life
- Make your health and well-being a priority
HOPEFUL OUTCOMES OF GROUP THERAPY
The goal of group therapy is to foster a positive and nurturing environment that encourages healing and self-reflection. Through hearing the struggles of others, attempting to face our own struggles can seem less daunting. In group therapy, people can form strong bonds based around a shared understanding of their problems resulting in sober friends for life.