Research has found that both group therapy and individual therapy are relatively equivalent in their effectiveness in addressing a broad range of mental health disorders, but being in group therapy offers participants many advantages. For instance, group therapy helps participants realize they are not alone in their challenges and gives them exposure to multiple members' perspectives. The pandemic especially exacerbated social struggles and hindered the implementation of healthy coping skills. Groups allow the opportunity to use these skills in real time and create ways to foster them in natural environments. Groups provide opportunities for receiving support, and help uncover alternative routes for problem solving in a safe environment, free of judgement. In group therapy members frequently find their "voice," and promotes a safe & supportive space to hone communication abilities and social skills. For members who may struggle with shyness or social anxiety, it can allow for participation and progress without them feeling like the center of attention and without fear of failure. Hearing others' stories can be a huge benefit to members who can learn from others how they have successfully dealt with life's difficulties. Members find that listening to other participants' stories and offering encouragement and support improves their self-esteem and develops camaraderie. Groups often end up providing a safe community. Healing through listening is effective, especially from others who share similar emotions or life stories. Group therapy is not just about learning, it’s also about being a support to one another. Mutual aid fosters vulnerability, challenges views, encourages creative thinking and creates unity. Members often find that listening to other participants' challenges can help them to put their own challenges into perspective and view them through a new lens.
-Post written by: Emily Faro, LCSW, Director of Growth and Business Development
Coastal is currently offering many groups. To find out more check out the "current groups" tab on the website.