The Benefits of Group Therapy for Recovery

The Benefits of Group Therapy for Recovery

The Benefits of Group Therapy for Recovery

When it comes to achieving a sustainable, long-term recovery, group therapy offers a wide range of benefits. Here's a quick look at them.

Keyword(s): Group Therapy

More than 21 million Americans struggle with addiction, although only about 11% of those individuals receive the care they need. One reason why that percentage is so low is that many don't know where to turn for help.

That's understandable. Recovery, especially in the early stages, can not only be difficult but isolating. Hence why group therapy emerged as a means to help people get treatment in a supportive environment. Here are only a few ways that group sessions can make a decisive difference in your recovery journey.

1. It Encourages Vulnerability

At various stages of recovery, a person needs to take a long, hard look at their lives. Step four of the Alcoholics Anonymous program, taking moral inventory, is one well-known example. To be honest with yourself during that process, you need to allow yourself to be vulnerable.

Group sessions can help in that regard.

A lot of people struggle to be vulnerable, either in traditional one-on-one therapy or even with themselves. Group therapy sessions let you see other patients let their barriers down. This creates an environment where it's easier to drop your guard and engage with your feelings and memories.

2. It Requires Accountability

Like making any positive change in your life, breaking an addiction requires doing things you don't want to do.

That's where accountability comes in. In your sessions, you will share with the rest of the group what your recovery goals are and how you're working to achieve them. And the other members of the group will do the same.

Together, you keep each other accountable to yourselves and the broader group and encourage one another to take the steps you need.

3. It Provides Community Support

Researchers at the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Association (SAMHSA) note that group therapy is a powerful tool for treating the root causes of substance abuse. It's at least as effective as traditional therapy, if not more so.

It's thought that the reason for this has to do with our nature as social beings. We're naturally inclined to form connections and develop groups with one another. When we're denied that ability, our mental and even physical health can suffer.

For many people, recovery can be a lonely experience, and the feeling of being cut off from others makes relapsing a greater threat.

Having a group you can relate to and be vulnerable with provides vital emotional support. By bonding together and working toward a shared goal, you can help hold each other up and bring out the best in one another.

4. It Offers Firsthand Proof of Improvement

During dark moments, it can feel like recovery is impossible. Every day you're just pushing a boulder up a mountain, only for it to roll back down so you can start all over again from the bottom. But joining therapy sessions with others can refute that idea.

In group therapy, different people will likely be at different stages of recovery. A person who only just got sober can meet people who are months or years along on their journey. And that can do a lot to instill hope when someone feels hopeless.

Making Group Therapy Part of Your Recovery Process

Recovery is a lifelong journey. Along the way, you'll encounter challenges that can make you want to give up. The good news is that you don't have to walk that path alone.

If you're only beginning, finding an online Alcoholics Anonymous meeting can be a great way to start. Contact us at Token Shop to find an online group to take those first steps.