The working mechanisms of group counseling are somewhat similar to that of support groups. You gather as a group, you’ll have a leader or even more than one leader who will act as a mentor, guide or counselor depending upon what issue you’re asking help for, and you’ll typically gather a scheduled number of days in a week to talk about the specific topic. Not everyone in the group will always be seeking help for certain issues or problems. In some cases, you’ll also have survivors who are there to tell you their stories and give you some much-needed inspiration. To know more about the positive impacts of group counseling, you can click here to have a good and informative read about the same topic.
How does group counseling work?
A group may contain around 5-15 members, and a single leader or mentor will guide each of these members. Whether the leader of the group is a mentor, therapist, or counselor will all depend on what issue you’re seeking group counseling for. Sometimes these groups may be about surviving a disease. There would be both survivors as well as patients in that group. The patients would be encouraged to talk about their struggles and issues, and the survivors will make them feel like they are not alone in this because others have gone through it too. This can be a great source of inspiration, strength, and support to the patients who are currently battling the disease.
Another type of common group counseling that is seen would be the ones that are conducted to welcome international students to a university. They are coming from far away, alone, and will relatively be new to all the workings and the environment of the university. Forming a support group for such students would help to make them feel that they are not alone in this while also making them familiar with this new environment.
Another type of group counseling would be the one that is conducted for people overcoming their addictions. Drug addiction is a serious issue, and support groups or group counseling at an outpatient treatment center can be of immense help. There may be people who are reducing drinking; there may be people who are outgrowing a toxic habit and so many such cases where group counseling could really provide benefit.
Benefits of group counseling
Group counseling has many great benefits for people:
- It improves communication skills, interpersonal skills as well as social skills, thus enabling you to talk and socialize with people in a better manner
- It helps you find strength and support in other people who may be going through the same situation as you are
- It makes you feel less lonely and more part of a group, which may also eventually evolve into a family
- It makes you confident about yourself
- It can even help you to find your identity and know your true purpose