There are several possibilities if psychotherapy is something you’re thinking about. Depending on the nature of your issue, group therapy in NJ may be the best for dealing with your worries and bringing about positive changes in your life.

Counseling is a daily part of addiction and mental health treatment in most programs. Each day our addiction specialists and mental health professionals make sure that our clients have a well-rounded, complete approach to their care. People from adolescents to adults experiencing substance abuse, stress, grief, trauma, depression, and anxiety, can benefit greatly from support groups to meet other group members to improve relationships, and gain support.

No two sessions are ever alike, but our clients will work with therapists, a mental health professional, and other participants to establish a sense of trust, respect, belonging, and support. Our goal is to foster a healthy group dynamic that supports the recovery journey of each individual involved through collaboration, advocacy, education, sharing, feedback, and positive emotional interaction.

At Discovery Institute in Marlboro, New Jersey, we provide a variety of therapy services including group counseling, to help individuals organize their conflicts with addiction and mental health, improve relationships with family members, improve self-esteem, etc. This type of therapy is support groups, process groups, and a social skills group, all in one.

What Is Group Therapy?

A small group of patients undergoes group psychotherapy, a highly effective kind of therapy, where they come together to support one another and themselves. There are many different techniques for group therapy, but they all focus on providing a friendly, coherent environment where people can talk about their personal, interpersonal, and social problems.

One or more psychologists oversee a group of five to fifteen patients during group counseling. Groups often meet once or twice a week for an hour or two. While some people exclusively attend groups, others also go to individual sessions.

Who Are Good Candidates For Group Therapy In NJ?

Many groups are designed to target a specific problem, such as depression, obesity, panic disorder, social anxiety, chronic pain, or substance abuse. Other support meetings concentrate more broadly on enhancing social skills and assisting individuals in resolving a variety of problems like anger, shyness, loneliness, and low self-esteem. People who have lost someone—a spouse, a child, or someone who committed suicide—often find support in groups.

The Benefits Of Group Therapy for Addiction and Mental Health

Group Therapy for Addiction and Mental Health In New JerseyAt first, it could seem scary to join a group of strangers, yet group therapy has advantages over individual therapy. In fact, according to psychologists, group participants are nearly always taken aback by how fulfilling the experience may be.

Groups can provide a sounding board and a network of support. Other group members frequently assist you in developing specific ideas for addressing a hard circumstance or life challenge and hold you accountable along the process.

Talking and listening to others regularly also aids in putting your issues in perspective. Many people struggle with mental health issues, but few are willing to talk freely about them with strangers. You could think you’re the only one struggling a lot of the time, but you’re not. Hearing others talk about their struggles and realizing you’re not alone can be a relief.

Another significant advantage is diversity. People come from different origins and have distinct personalities, therefore they view the world differently. You can learn a variety of approaches for dealing with your worries by observing how other people resolve issues and effect positive change.

When individuals enter treatment for addiction, mental health issues, or both, many suffer from social and emotional isolation from family, friends, and society as a whole. Without the social skills necessary to function in group settings, patients are unable to adjust to or transition to the real world outside of treatment. They may also be unable to successfully hold a job or reintegrate into family and social dynamics.

That’s why we emphasize the importance of group therapy and group dynamics here at Discovery Institute in NJ. 

The Benefits Of Group Therapy In NJ

The benefits are wide-ranging, and they include:

Provides support
Experiencing emotional distress such as anxiety or depression can be a scary and lonely experience. Being able to process these feelings in a group setting with other patients who can relate to these feelings de-stigmatizes them and normalizes them. This allows the patient to accept their feelings and process them productively and healthily.
Offers encouragement and a safe place of expression
Being able to hear about how other patients overcame struggles or coped with difficult emotions can encourage patients to face their problems head-on.

Promotes the development of healthy social skills
Many individuals who suffer from addiction are unable to function comfortably or “normally” in social environments, whether at work, school, home, or with friends. This often happens because substance use damages a person’s ability to relate to others. But group therapy helps people to develop vital interpersonal skills. It enables and encourages patients to interact with one another, process emotions together, and give each other constructive feedback. Learning how to function in a group setting is an important part of re-orienting oneself within society. These skills help patients to function and build relationships in “the real world” once they leave treatment.

Reduces isolation
Counseling may be the first opportunity many of our patients with addiction and mental health conditions have had in a long time to relate to others and build relationships. This promotes self-empowerment and healthy communication skills.

Teaches patients to give back
In addition to processing their own emotions and receiving feedback from both counselors and peers, patients have opportunities in group therapy to give feedback and help others. These opportunities help promote self-esteem and understanding for others, two important qualities of long-term recovery from drugs and alcohol.

Offers people the opportunity to witness the victories of others
While in recovery, it’s important for people to be able to see other people overcome their struggles. This gives people the opportunity to encourage others and see the benefits of dedication and commitment to recovery. Seeing others succeed can be encouraging and motivating to those who are working toward a life that is free from addiction.

Helps individuals to develop conflict-resolution skills
Those who are on the road to recovery from addiction may be unsure about how to work alongside others, especially when it comes to problem-solving and conflict resolution. It can be difficult for people to feel comfortable in these areas after having struggled with addiction. But, group therapy allows people to work through these things, building the skills they need to successfully engage and interact with other people.
No doubt, there are many other benefits to be found in group therapy for addiction. So, it’s important to speak with a professional to learn more about how this type of therapy can help you as you work through your recovery journey.

Group Therapy is More Than Just A Form Of Support

The benefits of formal sessions go beyond those of unofficial self-help and support groups, even though group members are an important source of support. One or more psychologists with specialized expertise run sessions and teach group members tried-and-true methods for dealing with certain issues.

For instance, if you participate in an anger management group, your psychologist will discuss anger management techniques that have been proven effective in studies. You can benefit greatly from this type of counseling if you follow the advice of a professional.

Group therapy is a type of support group that can involve many different methods to teach a range of coping skills and promote the expression and processing of emotion. At Discovery Institute of New Jersey, we offer different styles of counseling groups to provide comprehensive, diverse treatment to all of our patients. Some examples used include the following:

  • Focus groups: These groups choose one topic to address, such as gender-related issues, relapse prevention, or coping skills.
  • Creative groups: These groups promote the expression of emotion through unconventional methods, allowing patients to get in touch with their creative powers.
  • Writing: Writing is a great tool for reflection and growth. Writing can encourage patients to express their experiences and emotion, and provide a record of growth that patients can refer back to throughout their recovery.
  • Art therapy: Art can be calming and healing. Creating paintings, sculptures, and drawings is a great way to calm down and express emotion in a nonverbal way.
  • Processing groups: Processing allows patients to navigate complex, sometimes painful emotions regarding traumatic events in a healthy, supportive atmosphere.
  • Fitness classes like yoga and light exercise: Yoga and meditation promote holistic health and caring for one’s physical well-being, an important skill for a fulfilled, well-rounded life outside of treatment.
  • Meditation groups: creating a sense of inner peace is vital to recovery. Meditation groups allow patients to practice this skill under the guidance of experienced counselors.

Each of these groups is specifically designed to address a component of addiction treatment, from physical health to mental well-being. Patients who participate in these groups will have an opportunity to address their addictions among their peers in a healthy, supportive environment that promotes recovery.

Every group at the Discovery Institute of New Jersey has been developed to help patients learn how to function normally in their daily lives once they successfully graduate from treatment.

What Happens During Group Therapy?

In group therapy, you can join together with others to discuss issues, gain a better understanding of your situation, and learn from and with one another. You will develop your relationships with others and gain new insights about yourself while working with a therapist. You will develop self-awareness and coping mechanisms for your worries.

Members try to communicate their struggles and aspirations, feelings, thoughts, and reactions as freely and honestly as they can during a normal session, which lasts between 60 and 120 minutes. You can ask the therapist about the services they provide, and groups can be attended both in person and online. Members gain knowledge about their difficulties and identities, but they also learn how to help other group members through therapy.

Individual Therapy vs Group Therapy

As you begin to consider treatment, it’s best to learn more about what it entails. This includes the two main models of therapy for addiction. Both of these approaches to therapy are important components of the treatment process. But, individuals should be aware of the differences between these two models and the benefits each one offers.

As the names suggest, individual psychotherapy involves one individual and a therapist while group therapy involves multiple people and one or more therapists. So, the setting and environment of a therapy session will certainly vary depending on the type of therapy a person is involved in. However, both therapies offer people a safe and healthy space to speak about their experiences.

Another difference between individual psychotherapy and group therapy can be seen in the topics of discussion. Sometimes, what a person may discuss in a one-on-one therapy session may be different than what he or she talks about in a meeting. 

Also, certain types of therapy approaches may be involved in one type of setting without being present in another. For example, cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) may be an approach that is used in individual therapy. But, group therapy models may not rely as heavily on this approach.

What Distinguishes Group Therapy From Self-help and Support Groups?

Group Therapy In New JerseyIn contrast to support and self-help groups, group therapy offers opportunities for development and growth in addition to helping people manage their issues. With a focus on relationships, it teaches you how to get along with others better while receiving professional coaching.

Support groups, in contrast, which may or may not have professional leadership, assist people in coping with trying circumstances, but are typically designed to treat symptoms rather than address root causes. Similar to support groups, self-help groups frequently concentrate on a certain shared condition or circumstance and are typically not led by a licensed therapist.

Does Someone Need Both Individual and Group Therapy?

Group therapy can be employed as the main therapeutic strategy, in addition to individual therapy. How to best suit your needs should be discussed with your therapist.

At Discovery Institute, we prioritize individual treatment, but we also understand that recovery isn’t possible without support and help. That’s why we tailor our program to meet the needs of each patient who enters our program and provide therapeutic resources that help patients to learn to recover together.

Group Therapy At Discovery Institute is Here To Help You Recover

Depending on your treatment track, you may be introduced to different therapeutic groups than some of your peers. At Discovery Institute, we focus on helping each client individually. Since we offer an individualized and unique approach to treatment for each of our clients, depending upon your needs, some groups may be suggested while others may be mandatory.

We aim to provide our patients with a well-rounded approach to treatment to meet all of their needs, so your daily agenda of groups may differ slightly depending upon these specific needs.

Group therapy takes place daily, and much of the clinical portion of the day is dedicated to group-style therapeutic methods. Clients are among their peers and can discuss topics that are relevant to addiction and recovery to process emotions and heal.

Each group is facilitated by a licensed, experienced therapist who is trained in assessing group dynamics and fostering healthy communication. This is to ensure that patients get the most benefit out of each session that they attend.

If you or someone you know could use some help overcoming substance dependence, please reach out to us today. We are willing and available to offer the help necessary to end addiction. Please allow us to assist you or your loved one by calling us right away. Our team is ready to answer your call.

Reviewed for Medical & Clinical Accuracy by Dr. Joseph N. Ranieris D.O.

Dr. Joseph Ranieri D.O. earned his BS in Pharmacy at Temple University School of Pharmacy in 1981 and His Doctorate Degree in Osteopathic Medicine at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine in 1991. He is Board Certified by the American Board of Family Medicine and a Diplomate of the American Board of Preventive Medicine Addiction Certification.