Going through an addiction treatment program provides an opportunity to start improving your lifestyle, and the support system you develop while you're there is a key contributing factor to your success.
Engaging in group therapy or activities provides support and feedback from others who understand your struggles, and guidance from professionals when you face challenges. It allows you to develop new skills to cope with unexpected challenges and provides the support that you need to reach the next step in your recovery goals.
Advantages of Healthy Support
Drugs and alcohol impact both your emotional and mental health. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, roughly 8.4 million Americans with a mental health disorder also abuse drugs or alcohol.
Support groups offer assistance to help you focus on your goals and start making positive changes without facing judgment from others.
The primary advantages of a healthy support network include:
- Talking about concerns with individuals who understand the challenges you are going through
- Developing new coping skills for cravings or temptations
- Getting help when temptations arise
- Developing healthy friendships
- Reducing negative emotions, like loneliness or anxiety
- Gaining new perspectives into your specific situation and challenges
Group activities build up the support that you need to move forward without worrying about the possibility of falling. When you engage in group activities and therapy, you gain the opportunity to ask for help when challenges arise without worrying about the stigma associated with your current situation.
Types of Group Activities
During a treatment program, therapists and treatment specialists will make recommendations for a variety of activities that will help with your long-term recovery goals.
Activities that you can expect during a treatment program include:
- Group therapy
- Exercise programs
- Sports activities
- Creative activities, like dancing, art, or music
Humans are naturally inclined to congregate and work together, which is what makes group therapy so effective. Socializing provides powerful benefits to your mental and emotional well-being.
Gaining Benefits from Group Activities
The advantages of any group activity will depend on the way that you participate. When you actively participate in activities and talk to others within the group, it provides powerful benefits to your health and wellness and allows you to build up trust and ask for advice when challenges or temptations arise.
Group activities provide the support that you need to start working toward realistic treatment goals. Activities allow you to ask for advice, get help, or even just feel comfortable knowing that others face the same challenges. Participate in group therapy and activities during treatment to improve your mental health and start making positive changes to your lifestyle.
- Michael Herkov, Ph.D., About Group Therapy, Psych Central, January 30, 2013, http://psychcentral.com/lib/about-group-therapy/
- Mental and Substance Use Disorders, The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, October 9, 2014, http://www.samhsa.gov/disorders
- Support Groups, Web MD, February 13, 2013, http://www.webmd.com/anxiety-panic/anxiety-support-group
- Groups and Substance Abuse Treatment, The National Institutes of Health, 2005, http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK64223/