Group therapy might seem like an intimidating concept to some, but it can be very worthwhile and effective during substance use disorder treatment. It’s common for those living with an addiction to have shared challenges in life – which is why it can be empowering and comforting to hear from others about their experiences with drug or alcohol addiction.
In this article, you’ll learn about the benefits of group therapy and how it can help you during your drug rehab program.
What is Group Therapy?
Group therapy is a type of psychotherapy that involves one or more therapists and several other individuals in a group setting. It’s often used in combination with individual therapy sessions as part of a comprehensive addiction treatment plan.
During a group therapy session, a therapist will typically select the topic/theme of the session and individuals have the opportunity to share their experiences, learn from others, practice new skills, and gain insight. Sometimes the discussions will be peer-led. The exact format of a group therapy session can vary, but most use a therapeutic approach that involves a combination of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Motivational Interviewing, and others.
Staff-to-patient ratios can vary, but at Enlight Treatment Center, we offer our clients 3:1, ensuring we provide quality care.
What are the Benefits of Group Therapy?
There are several benefits to participating in group therapy sessions during addiction treatment, which includes:
Receive Peer Support
Group sessions provide a sense of community during a challenging time. Individuals are able to listen to the struggles of others and share their own experiences out loud. This can promote self-esteem and reduce some feelings of isolation that can be common with drug addiction and recovery. Many people going through a drug rehab program also have a co-occurring mental health condition. This can include anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, PTSD, and many others. By participating in group therapy, individuals are able to learn how other members manage their mental health conditions and receive emotional support for working through their own conditions. Learning how to deal with these varying disorders is a large part of maintaining sobriety in life.
During group therapy sessions, individuals are held accountable for their actions. This encourages responsibility during the recovery process from fellow group members, which can be empowering throughout the drug rehab program.
Develop New Skills
During the addiction recovery process, group therapy sessions allow individuals to learn new skills. For example, if someone experiences things such as social anxiety, general anxiety disorders, or feelings of shame around their addiction or life choices, participating in a group therapy session can provide a place to practice opening up about personal experiences. It can also be a way to socialize with others in a controlled setting (guided by a therapist) that feels like an emotionally safe space. Group therapy can even help individuals improve interpersonal communication skills since each session always involves listening to others and sharing (when comfortable doing so).
Shift a Perspective
Not only can support groups in the form of group therapy help individuals work through unresolved issues, but it can also help improve their mindset and see things from perspectives other than their own. It’s common to feel as if you’re the only person going through a specific situation. However, participation in group therapy will show you that isn’t the case.
More than that, it will show you that everyone sees things differently and that not everyone handles situations the same. While you might feel overwhelmed or hopeless about a situation, other group members have been there and have been able to move past those feelings and come out on the other side. Taking the time to listen to what others have to say can not only give you the opportunity to learn new coping mechanisms and have someone to talk to, but it can help change your mindset altogether. This will be important for moving forward in life and getting your mind healthy so that you can make healthy choices.
Despite group therapy being something that is done with other people, the person who will benefit the most from the experience is you. You have the opportunity to grow and blossom, which is something to take advantage of – you can then use the experiences of others to look at yourself and see how resilient you are and recognize that not all of the choices you’ve made are bad. Even though you’re going through something hard right now, you are stronger than your situation. You will also recognize that you have what it takes to fight, take your life back, and come out on top.
Learning how to help yourself and accept help from others will also enable you to one day be a guiding force to someone else, and that’s a beautiful thing to be a part of in the addiction recovery process.
Get Drug and Alcohol Treatment Today
Drug and alcohol addiction treatment is available to help you or someone you love overcome addiction and live a healthy, sober life. Enlight Treatment Center in Ventura, California, provides effective therapies and treatment options that enable clients to fully concentrate on solving their addiction issues and regain hope and optimism about their future. In addition to inpatient drug and alcohol rehab programs, we offer medication-assisted detox and dual diagnosis treatment.
If you or a loved one has a problem with drug abuse, we are here to help.