Group therapy is a form of psychotherapy, and it wouldn’t be overstating the case to say that everyone needs some psychological help at one time or another. No one’s life is perfect; no human is perfect. And circumstances throw turmoil at us all no matter how rich, poor, talented, or safe we may feel.
Look at what Covid 19 and the Pandemic has done to every single one of us in 2020. Our relationships, our work, and our very being have been challenged. You may feel you’re at the breaking point right now. Life is just not the same. Toxic relationships and many kinds of family trauma and abuse over time have also left lasting emotional damage that may have worsened with this new deadly challenge to our mental health. So what do we do about our emotional problems and injuries? Medicine alone can’t treat mental health and behavioral issues.
Emotional pain and behavior problems are treated with psychotherapy as well as with medicines
I’ve been to many different kinds of therapy over the years for different reasons. I’ve experienced abusive relationships, the addiction of teen children, difficulties with work, and loss of loved ones. When my teens were using, I needed help to cope with it and to know what to do. When we have physical illnesses, we go to the doctor. It’s not even a question. Psychotherapy is kind of like physical therapy for your mind, and it enhances your life by bringing awareness and lessening the pain. And if you have a good counselor, psychologist or therapist, you create a plan for healing.
Sounds good, right? But not everyone gets desperately needed help. Are you scared of the word psycho? Does stigma about group or psychotherapy hold you back? Psycho just means mental. It doesn’t mean you’re crazy.
Psycho is a slang term for someone who is mentally unstable or afflicted with a psychosis. Your best friend risks looking like a psycho if she keeps stalking her ex-boyfriend months after their breakup. Psycho comes from the Greek word psykho, which means mental.
What Is Psychotherapy?
We used to think of psychotherapy as “talk therapy.” Research over hundreds of years shows that keeping your emotions and pain inside can make you physically ill as well as emotionally sick. You also feel alone, as if you are the only one on the planet experiencing the feelings you have. Psychotherapy, however, has grown way past just talking. Here are some of the types of psychotherapy that people use these days.
Each form of treatment uses its own kind psychotherapy techniques. One of my biggest breakthroughs came after a weekend equine-assisted psychotherapy. It was a small group therapy using horses as the primary tool for understanding trauma. Other people have been highly successful in a group setting especially groups that address grief, depression, and anxiety. Self help for family members of addiction find relief with Al-anon.
As you can see, individual therapy has many different forms. Transference-focused psychotherapy is designed for those who severe personality disorders.
Group therapy can help you relate better with others
If you have relationship or communication issues and don’t understand how you seem to others, group psychotherapy could be a useful resource. Here you can share your experiences with other people. Learning to listen, and being able to talk about your feelings with people who understand what you’re going through can lessen your feelings of being alone.
Group therapy also offers the opportunity to meet others and create a network of support. Connecting with others in a safe environment where there is no judgement can be reassuring. Seeing that others are insecure, too, helps to create new awareness and insights about your own fears. The groups are usually small, and if you don’t want to talk, silence is okay, too.
Group therapy is also cost effective
Group psychotherapy is cost effective because one therapist can work with several people at the same time. That means the price of the therapist’s hour can be split among a number of clients. If you want to save money, this form of treatment may work well for you. You might even get more value out of it than an individual meeting because you can talk about your issues with others, and not just the professional.
When a group setting is not for you
Here are some reasons why group therapy may not be for you. While it’s confidential, you may not want to share as much as you need. You won’t have the time to give details or get feedback from the facilitator. Scheduling can be a problem when work or family needs get in the way.
This can apply to any type of therapy session, but group psychotherapy can sometimes be more prone to attendance issues, which can make rescheduling more difficult. Another drawback is that you won’t get as much individual attention. Do you have social anxiety? Then the group therapy setting might well increase tension, even though it’s intended to be a comfortable and judgment-free zone.
Group psychotherapy is acclaimed by millions of participants worldwide for being enjoyable and effective at the same time. If you are looking into seeking treatment maybe online therapy is right for you.