30 Mar The Power of Groups
This blog post was written by guest blogger, Carol Juergensen Sheets, LCSW, CSAT. Carol brings a variety of experiences to the community including having worked in schools, hospitals and in mental health for over 30 years. She provides services for children, adults and families who are dealing with life adjustment issues. She currently writes for IndyMetroWoman Magazine and Indy Kids Magazine. Carol’s current internet show is about sexual addiction and can be accessed by going to www.blogtalkradio.com/sexhelpwithcarolthecoach.
Please note that the opinions presented in the article are that of the author and not necessarily the opinions of RHN. RHN chooses to publish articles and share individual sites to evoke discussion and show all options, ideas and beliefs.
In my 32 years of psychotherapy, I have been blessed to facilitate over 2000 groups. I have been an advocate for psychotherapeutic groups because there is no better intervention that will assist a client in change and recovery. I have often said that my mission is to work myself out of a job by providing groups because when push comes to shove… you can’t call me in the middle of the night but you can call a group member who has watched you struggle, and is there for you to create a thriving life. He or she is there to support you in your change by confronting you, holding you accountable and cheering you on through recovery and transformation.
Life is so hectic that we often get lost in isolation. There is no better way to increase your support and face your challenges than by way of a group. There is no doubt that 12 Step Groups have moved people towards sanity in an insane world and I hold them in high regard too… however, therapy groups take it that next step because each member is responsible for providing honest feedback and being a different kind of mirror that you face when all you thought you had in your life was the mirror that you project about yourself every day. It is easy to get stuck in negative thinking and groups not only allow you but expect you to try out new behaviors that are kinder and gentler for your psyche. What we know about group intervention is that you show up in the group the same way you show up in the world. And group is a safe place to try on new behaviors to try out in group. Then an amazing thing happens because what you learn in group is manifested in the real world and you soon learn that you can make changes, be different and gain new confidence that will carry you further in a chaotic world.
Group is not necessarily easy but when you work it… it works. It is a safe place to be the new and improved and it is all done in a community of compassion and encouragement. I will always have at least two groups running in my practice because I don’t believe in treating people in a vacuum and it is the fastest way to promote change. Never underestimate the power of group… it is the synergy that we need to heal the wounds and grow into maturity!