If the struggles you are working through happen in relationship, Group Therapy may be right for you. Group provides an emotional learning laboratory, which supports members to express feelings authentically, speak your mind and tolerate the natural, healthy conflict that accompanies real closeness.
Is Group for me?
It could be, if you describe yourself in any of the following ways:
Your relationships are shallow or dissatisfying. You wonder, “Why can’t I find people who really want to connect?”
You present a façade of having it all together when underneath you feel pretty lost from yourself.
You’re struggling and it feels like you are the only one.
People irritate you or you feel superior to others a lot of the time.
Dating or building friendships brings up anxiety, negative self-talk, or you tend to avoid it all together.
You’re depressed or unmotivated.
You’re told you lack communication skills.
You’re concerned, confused or frightened by your anger.
You avoid conflict and people please to the detriment of your dreams and wishes for your life.
You keep choosing the wrong partner for you.
Some of these experiences may have more to do with the larger culture we are all immersed in. Whether they are ancestral, attachment based, cultural or interpersonal, and depending on your goals, group may be able to provide the just right setting for exploration and learning.
Upcoming Group Opportunities.
Be You: With Others
Mixed-Gender Process Group
This advanced ongoing group offers participants a laboratory where feedback and new ways of engaging support change.
Meets Tuesdays 5:45-7:15pm
Opening Winter 2020
“Like-Gender,” Supported Process Group
These beginning groups offer a combination of information and experimentation in service to learning how to connect in more fulfilling ways.
Non-binary Identifying Group meets Mondays 5:45pm-7:15pm
Female Identifying Group meets Wednesdays 4-5:30pm
Although most adults seeking mental health and personal development think of individual work when they consider therapy, the group format is a powerful method of transformation and healing. Individual therapy is the right choice when we are working through a traumatic history and need individual holding, when the work of getting to know ourselves is primary or when we are trying to build a basic sense of self and security in the world.
When we are ready to look at the ways our physiological histories are impacting our success and satisfaction in relationships, work and life, group is the right next step. If feel a little nervous thinking about joining a group, you’re normal. Groups presents the possibility of interpersonal conflict and the majority of us, especially out here on the West Coast, feel most comfortable when we all get along. The problem with this is we lose the opportunity for real intimacy. Comfort not only robs us of our true needs and desires, it squashes so many of the experiences that make being human so exhilarating. Safety and comfort can feel similarly in our bodies and it’s important to be aware, when considering a process group, that part of our work, is making room for difficult feelings.
Getting to the root of the stuff all our self-help, personal development work and even individual therapy hasn’t touched in a group of peers means exposing ourselves. Sometimes in ways we would never have anticipated. It’s thrilling and scary at times. But never unsafe. Those of you from oppressed groups, I’m not actually talking to you so much. It’s important you know, I will actively, to the best of my current knowledge base be looking out for microaggressions, implicit bias, and white fragility. Outright discrimination is not welcome in my practice. I am committed to bringing the reality of our multicultural world into the therapy room. Bypassing this reality does all of us a disservice.
Nerves are healthy and learning to tolerate a little discomfort in a supported setting where help is available means expanding your capacity to be with and experience the value and meaning of feelings such as anger, disgust, fear and others because they come up, even in healthy relationships. Maintaining connection is possible, even in the face of disagreements. Some trust that we can work through difficulties, leads us into the kind of intimacy and self-actualization we’ve always wanted.
What is an interpersonal process group?
Process groups are different from support groups, where content tends to be focused on an area of likeness or a shared challenge. All the groups I run, to varying degrees, shine the light on what’s happening between people. Support groups tend to contain interaction in service to shared encouragement, identification and empathy, while process groups are interested in a broader range of experiences.
Although difficult events might be shared and experiences of support and connection felt, the purpose of a therapy group is different. In addition to all of these positive experiences, we notice our thoughts and feelings in response to the other members in real time. It is through these real, less facilitated interactions, that we access those old immovable patterns and find opportunities to step into new ways of engaging.