Group therapy can have many satisfactory and therapeutic outcomes, leading to increased engagement in life. Being a group member can enable the participant to experience renewed hope from the realisation that we are not alone in our difficulties. Members can take satisfaction from an increase of awareness, and from others’ learning; can discover and change maladaptive patterns (derived from our families of origin) through interaction with others, and can come to see new or different ways to live our lives.
Being a group member is a challenge to most people. Conditions and boundaries will be defined at the outset, as respect and safety are very important. In a Gestalt therapy group, the feelings we have on arrival are first addressed. It is important to gather some sense of being in the group and how this impacts on use. As the group progresses and as members get to know each other more deeply, opportunities will arise for individuals to articulate who we are and what we are feeling and needing. Everyone is different, every response is valid. The experience of sharing each other’s thoughts and feelings, within a committed group, can be of inestimable value for personal development and the growth of understanding.