Groups generate growth. Joining a group is an anxiety inducing process. Individuals often enter group not knowing what group members will be like, whether they will fit in, or if they will even get anything out of group. These are all unknowns that can evoke discomfort. The good news is that personal growth often occurs when we are able to push ourselves out of our comfort zones. At the very least, individuals often feel a sense of pride for overcoming any fear associated with group and are able to use this confidence in other areas of their lives.
Groups provide support. A group gives individuals the opportunity to share their experiences, as well as to hear about similar challenges faced by others. These interactions are often incredibly beneficial because individuals learn that they are not alone in their struggles and group members are able to offer support to one another.
Groups teach us we are human. In many cultures there are implicit and explicit messages that suggest it is best to keep any struggles, and accompanying feelings such as guilt, fear, or shame, to ourselves. Too often, the consequence of this is isolation and feeling alone in our experiences. A group provides a safe space that allows individuals to learn first-hand that pain and suffering is a normal human experience, which we all share.
Groups provide powerful feedback. It is common to wonder how people in our lives perceive us and whether the messages that we intend to communicate, both verbally and nonverbally, are interpreted correctly. A group provides a safe environment for individuals to ask and receive feedback from others and learn ways to utilize this feedback in a meaningful and effective way.
Groups open the door to self-awareness. A group can help individuals tune into their emotional experiences and learn how they tend to respond to these emotions. A group also provides an interpersonal setting which allows individuals to pay close attention to how they interact with others and learn how these patterns impact their relationships and lives in general.
The Counseling and Wellness Center is offering a weekly workshop teaching mindfulness and meditation skills. Mindfulness practice cultivates awareness of the mind and body in the present moment with openness, curiosity, and acceptance. In the workshop you will learn skills that can help you improve focus, reduce stress, regulate emotions and manage physical pain. All levels of experience and curiosity are welcome.