By :Sandeep Atwal
This group allows clients to explore their dynamics, issues, and struggles in a creative and nonthreatening manner. The group opens with the clients receiving prompts by the therapist (prompts usually consist of words, sentence stems, or concepts), the clients write their associations to the prompts, and then they share their writings with the rest of the group.
This exercise facilitates access to autobiographical episodic memories. In other words, the writings enable the clients to recall and describe experiences and events from their past and present. This exercise also helps clients conjure up events and feelings about the future. This happens because the clients have their own personal associations and memories related to prompts that are presented at the beginning of each group.
The group writing exercise provides space for the client to be self-reflective. So, it not only helps the clients express their feelings but also helps them think about their feelings. Self-reflection on one’s past, present, and future is vital in gaining understanding of what one thinks or feels, and how one learned to think the way they think. It allows one to become self-aware and this allows for one’s consciousness to increase. Being part of the group allows others to give their thoughts on the subject at hand, providing the writer with different options or alternatives to their point of view. This whole experience gently assists the mind to grow, giving the client more options.
The therapist in the group can help guide the exploration that occurs and help further elucidate the client’s feelings, thoughts, and assist in the client’s growth.