Content reviewed by Anthony T. Triola, Executive Director at New Hope Ranch
Establishing a healthy support network is crucial to helping sustain recovery. However, sometimes your reasons for not having a support system can vary. Perhaps you are not ready to repair the relationships with friends and family, or maybe you feel that you don’t deserve their support. Understand that you deserve help, but you might not know where to find support that will put your recovery needs first.
Peer support groups provide an effective opportunity for treatment and behavioral health issues. When you seek therapy among fellow peers, you tend to open up and express yourself more effectively because you share similar experiences. Peer support groups can be advantageous, especially if you struggle with anxiety, depression or social phobias. Whether you seek peer support groups through 12-step programs such as AA or NA or you attend local community group meetings, there are plenty of reasons why you should consider this model of therapy.
A key element of group therapy relies upon input from various people’s outlooks on life and recovery.
Everyone in the meeting will undoubtedly view each other’s problems and experiences differently. While observing how others handle their issues or concerns, you can incorporate different strategies to address some of your challenges.
Additionally, because different members will be in various stages of treatment and recovery, it allows for the opportunity to offer you new ways of coping with particular challenges. In turn, you can also benefit from helping others at different points in their recovery. Becoming a leader for others can boost your motivation to continue building upon the skills needed to manage mental health and substance use disorders.
Among the most important benefits of group therapy are the connections you will make with the others in the group.
Engaging in a group setting with others will help you understand that you are not alone and that others like you face similar challenges. Often, intense feelings of isolation and alienation occur when you are dealing with a mental health or substance use disorder, which could make pursuing treatment even harder. New Hope Ranch will help you seek the best 12-step program in Texas to offer you the best opportunity to find peers and programs that will support you and speak to your needs.
Peer support groups surround you with others who are dealing with similar issues. Having a shared understanding of a challenging experience will cultivate trust, honesty and eliminate the pressures of feeling judged. Sharing your feelings and listening to the experiences of others can relieve the anxiety, stress and hurt that you may be feeling. Making these connections can create foundational elements for strong support groups and potentially flourish into life-long friendships.
Having the friendship, shared interests and support of other peers provides certain security and comfort that promotes confidence.
When interacting with members of the group, you will see reflections of yourself from their perspectives, allow any overlooked traits about yourself to surface and improve your confidence to cope with challenging situations.
Such confidence will enable you to push yourself to pursue activities and experiences outside of the group. The energy and motivation that you will gain from interacting with peers will help you face challenges with the understanding that even if you stumble, you have their support. Such support will allow you to maintain your focus and well-being.
As you continue to develop and learn about yourself, having confidence will also allow you the opportunity to push yourself a little further. Pushing yourself in healthy ways helps you continue learning about yourself and grow in ways you never thought possible while under the weight of addiction. Pushing yourself in healthy ways means setting goals and taking chances that don’t leave you feeling anxious or stressed.
Joining a peer group instills a sense of responsibility and accountability.
While peer pressure is not ordinarily positive, certain forms of it can be with peer support groups. It does not mean that you or others will be judged or made to feel guilty. Nor will it involve feeling pressured or bullied to do something you are not ready for or behave in a certain way. However, when other group members provide positive feedback and advice for addressing challenges, a feeling of needing to take responsibility and accountability emerges from wanting to deliver and be accepted by your group. It is just enough motivation to help push you forward toward achieving your goals.
Whether you participate in full or partial in-patient treatment programs, most patients find that group therapy is a critical asset to helping them sustain their recovery.
Outpatient programs ensure that you can continue such therapy to help you transition from initial treatment to transitional living and eventually back into your everyday life. Of course, you can continue to attend group therapy to aid you in your recovery.
At New Hope Ranch, we continue to refine our approach by offering support in finding the best 12-step programs in Texas. If you have been unable to find success with other forms of therapy, attending peer support groups could be the key to helping you overcome your challenges. If you are currently struggling to manage your emotions and are experiencing negative thoughts and behaviors, then the time to get help is now. Find out more by calling (737) 600-8565.