What are some common misconceptions around conducting group therapy sessions? How can you effectively market your group sessions? What are some important clinical skills that a budding group therapist should work towards?
In this podcast episode, Joe Sanok speaks with Carrie Haynes about why we need to offer group therapy.
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Meet Carrie Haynes
She has spent her career specializing in group work and is passionate about supporting therapists and healers in facilitating transformational group experiences for their clients. She truly believes that powerful group work can change the world.
In This Podcast
- Common misconceptions around group therapy
- Clinical skills therapists can work on before conducting a group session
- Marketing group therapy
- Carrie’s tips for therapists starting their own podcasts
Common misconceptions around group therapy
“If you know how to conduct individual therapy then you know how to facilitate groups”
This is not true.
It is a special skillset and I think a lot of people get discouraged because things come up in group that they don’t know how to handle and don’t know how to deal with and then they feel like ‘well maybe I’m not so good at this’ or ‘maybe groups aren’t so helpful’ … but no, you didn’t get any specialized training [therefore] we would never expect you to be a wonderful therapist with no training. (Carrie Haynes)
The majority of therapist training does not include training therapists on how to handle and conduct group therapy, but this does not mean they are incapable therapists, it simply means that they lack the necessary skillset.
Luckily, it is something that you can learn and become better at. Give yourself the chance to see how successful a group facilitator you can become with a little mentorship and a little bit of grace.
“Group takes a lot of work”
If you prepare just a little, show up with your best self, and are willing to be present and centered – as all therapists have been taught – group can then feel like less work and can be more energizing because you are part of a healing space.
If we are dealing with [our clients] issues with relationships with people, there is something so much more powerful about the client being able to have an in vivo experience, because what we know is that in a lot of groups what happens in the outside world will be recreated inside of the group, but then there is an opportunity to heal that and change it. (Carrie Haynes)
Clinical skills therapists can work on before conducting a group session
- Centering yourself and being able to be present in tracking what is going on in the moment rather than being in your head.
- Being more embodied and present.
- Tracking the process versus the content. Do not only follow the words that people are saying but also look at how and why they are saying them, and what is happening among and between members.
Marketing group therapy
It can be more difficult for people to self-select therapeutic groups for themselves.
Look at your own caseload:
and see who already in your caseload could benefit from group work who could benefit from it. If you are starting your group for the first time, consider starting with three or four clients in a session.
Market it to your colleagues:
Market group therapy to your follow therapists because therapists have relationships with their clients and they will not recommend their client to see a group therapist or join a group therapy session without reason, and their client will appreciate that because clients trust their therapists.
Tips for therapists starting their own podcast
- Get some help with it: consider hiring a virtual assistant to help you with the editing and the show notes. Think about the systems that need to be taken care of so that you can shine on the podcast without having to worry about the admin pieces.
- Give yourself the opportunity to get some support so that you can achieve your goals.
- Have lots of self-compassion.
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Meet Joe Sanok
Joe Sanok helps counselors to create thriving practices that are the envy of other counselors. He has helped counselors to grow their businesses by 50-500% and is proud of all the private practice owners that are growing their income, influence, and impact on the world. Click here to explore consulting with Joe.
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