According to the Canadian Mental Health Association, one in five Canadians will experience a mental health problem at some point in their lives. Yet, accessing quality mental health support can be expensive for many people. Joining a support group can be a great way to bridge that gap.
When we think of the term "support group," we often think of women coming together after a divorce or mothers coming together to discuss the challenges of motherhood. Maybe we think of Alcoholics Anonymous or similar 12-step programs. While these are examples of support groups, many other types of support groups, like men's or women's groups, can benefit individuals struggling with different life issues.
We all need someone to talk to from time to time. Whether it's about our careers, love lives, or families, it's essential to have somebody we can confide in and rely on for support.
In this blog post, we'll be exploring the benefits of joining a support group. Whether you're struggling with depression, anxiety, addiction, or anything else, a support group can provide you with the resources and support you need to get through tough times.
1. Relief from Isolation and Loneliness
People need other people. It’s common for people to underestimate how much they might benefit from the support of people. One of the main benefits of joining a support group is that it can help reduce feelings of isolation and loneliness. When we're going through a tough time, it's easy to feel like we're the only ones going through it. However, when we join a support group, we quickly realize that other people are facing similar struggles. This can help us feel less alone in our journey.
2. Gaining New Perspectives
In addition to reducing feelings of isolation, another benefit of joining a support group is that it offers us the opportunity to gain new perspectives. It's easy to get caught up in our heads and become fixated on our problems when we're in the midst of our struggles. But when we join a support group and hear other people's stories, we can gain new perspectives and see our situation in a new light. This can help us develop a more well-rounded view of our situation and find new ways to cope with our challenges.
3. Building Lasting Connections
Another great benefit of joining a support group is that it provides us with an opportunity to build lasting connections with others. When we share our stories with others who have been through similar experiences, we quickly develop strong bonds with them. These bonds can provide us with long-term emotional support as we continue to face our challenges.
4. Feeling Understood
It can be difficult to open up to family and friends about specific issues because they may not be able to relate. But in a support group, everyone is going through the same thing, so you can feel more comfortable sharing your thoughts and feelings.
5. Getting Advice from Others Who Have Been Through It
At Nomina, our groups are all led by experienced registered psychotherapists. Your group members will also have valuable insights that you may not have considered before. They can offer helpful advice based on their own experiences. You may also find that hearing about how others have coped with similar situations can give you new ideas about dealing with your own challenges.
6. Learning New Skills
Many groups offer educational presentations on topics related to mental health or wellness. These presentations can teach you valuable new information that you can use in your daily life. You may also have the opportunity to practice these skills in group sessions. This can help you feel more confident and prepared to use them in real-world situations.
If you're struggling with a complicated life issue, know that you're not alone. There are many others out there who are facing similar challenges. While it can be easy to feel like you're all alone in your journey, joining a support group can also offer many other benefits. If you’re struggling, consider finding a support group in your area.