What are the Benefits of Group Work?

Benefits of Group Work Video

Welcome to this video about group work and its benefits.

First, we’ll talk about what group work, or group therapy, is, then we can get into its benefits.

What is Group Therapy?

Group therapy includes one or more leaders who may be psychologists, counselors, or social workers, who help lead a group of five to fifteen individuals. The information discussed in the group is always confidential. Normally, groups meet for an hour or two each week. Often, an individual will attend individual therapy as well as group therapy; however, some might only participate in group therapy.

Specific Targets

Many groups are established to help target a specific problem, whether it be depression, social anxiety, chronic pain, substance abuse, obesity, panic disorders, etc. Other groups may concentrate more generally on improving social skills, helping people manage anger, shyness, loneliness, low self-esteem, and so on. Additionally, groups are often established to help people who have been affected by a loss.

Open Groups vs. Closed Groups

A group may be opened or closed.

Open groups are groups where members can join at any time. While a core continuous group of members may exist within an open group, there are also constant membership changes. These can add diversity to the group but can also introduce the potential for disruption when a member leaves or joins.

Closed groups are groups where all members begin the group at the same time and generally have a specific end date. Closed groups afford better opportunities for group members to bond, identify with one another, and form a sense of commitment to the group.

Stages of Development

Stages of group development have been described by many models, one of the most common being Bruce Tuckman’s five stages of group development.

The first stage is the Forming stage, when the group comes together and rules are established and agreed upon. Members tend to be more subdued and hesitant during this stage.

The second stage, the Storming stage, is when feelings begin to be expressed by members who still identify as individuals rather than members of the group. There may be resistance in this phase.

Next is the Norming stage, when a sense of unity and teamwork arises and members begin to encourage one another.

The Norming stage is followed by the Performing stage, in which hierarchy dissipates and the members take control of the group process.

The final stage is the Adjourning stage, in which the team recognizes it is time for closure and moving on. Some members may have anxiety during this phase or may mourn the closure of the group. Reflection of progress and accomplishments is paramount in this stage.

The Benefits of Group Work

For many individuals, group work can be very intimidating, but group therapy can be a great platform to encourage growth in ways that individual therapy cannot. Groups can provide individuals with a community of people that help to support, encourage, and act as a sounding board for one another. Other members of the group may have helpful advice and wisdom to offer on a difficult situation or life challenge.

Accountability is another helpful and necessary component of group therapy. Having people ask one another on a regular basis if they are following through with their commitment can help everyone stay on track to meet their goals.

Regularly opening up about internal issues and listening to others can help an individual put their own problems in perspective. It’s easy to fall into the false narrative that you are the only one who feels the way that you do; group therapy can help individuals see that they are not alone in their struggle and that having struggles is a reality of life.

Diversity is also a major benefit of group therapy. Not everyone in the group thinks, feels, or acts the same as each other. A diverse group of people with different personalities, backgrounds, and even living situations can provide healthy conversation and a different perspective.

Group therapy is also effective in revealing more to the individual about themselves than they knew before, such as how they interact with people and how others are affected by those interactions.

Overall, group therapy can be very effective in helping individuals recognize and identify problems, gain a sense of community, learn more about themselves, and gain new perspectives.

That’s all for this video. Thanks for watching, and happy studying!



by Mometrix Test Preparation | Last Updated: April 23, 2024