"It is one of the most beautiful compensations of this life that no man* can sincerely try to help another without helping himself." Ralph Waldo Emerson *or woman!
Support Group Offerings
Group counseling provides private support, encouragement, and helpful feedback for students wishing to enjoy their lives more, improve their relationships, and feel better about themselves. Groups can help you maintain your motivation, make changes, and stay hopeful in the face of depression, anxiety, or difficult family or personal circumstances.
Groups Running Spring 2014
Social Strengths and Anxiety Management group on Wednesdays from 3:00-4:30 pm.:Students will explore and discuss methods for building tools to empower them in facing social, group and other situations that can sometimes feel overwhelming or distinctly uncomfortable. This group will follow a set curriculum, so there will be no excessive pressure for members to come up with topics for conversation or be put on the spot to speak in the group. Come get some! Facilitators: Dr. Julie Liefeld and Cate McGetrick, MFT. Call for a screening interview.
- Upperclass group on Tuesdays 1:50-3:05pm: Addressing family and peer relationships, maintaining motivation, stress management, self-care and boundary setting, learning to give and receive support, let go of perfectionism, senior transition concerns and career/life planning. Facilitator: Elaine Allen, LCSW. Call for a screening interview.
- Grief Share and Recovery Group (day/time TBA) Grief is a normal and natural process. However, many of the ideas we have been taught about dealing with grief are not helpful.This group will allow individuals who have experienced a loss or many losses learn more about the tasks of grief and how to rediscover meaning in life. While grief is a highly-individualized experience, participation in a support group often helps the healing begin. If you have experienced one or more losses, and you wish to move beyond the pain, this program offers you the probability of a richer and more rewarding life. Please contact Michelle A. Lawler, LPC, Grief Recovery Specialist for more information.
MBSR Mindful Based Stress Reduction on Wednesdays from 5:00 – 6:30 PM: The Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program is an eight-week introduction to mindfulness practice, including seated meditation and gentle yoga. It is designed to teach people how to take better care of themselves and participate fully in improving their health, well-being and quality of life. This program teaches you how to take charge of your life by learning to work consciously, systematically and skillfully with all types of stress including sleep disturbances, pain, illness, relationship stress, job or school stress and the challenges and demands of daily life.
The MBSR program consists of eight weekly 1.5-hour sessions and one 3-hour retreat held on a weekend. This highly participatory, practical course includes
•Guided instruction in mindfulness meditation practices
•Gentle stretching and mindful yoga
•Group discussion aimed at enhancing awareness in everyday life
•Review of physiological and psychological components of the stress cycle
•Skills for responding to specific types of stress
•Daily personal practice
The Counseling Center at Southern Connecticut State University is pleased to offer this popular course for the first time on campus. It is open to undergraduate and graduate students. It requires a commitment to attend all weekly meetings, one weekend retreat and practice a few minutes every day. Pre-registration required and class size is limited.
When: Wednesdays from 5:00 – 6:30 PM
Dates: January 22 – March 12
Retreat: Sunday, March 2 (2 – 5 PM) Where: Student Center Room 305
To register, please call the Counseling Center at 392-5475.
Facilitators: Anne Dutton, MS, RYT and Denise Zack, LPC, RYT. To register, please call the Counseling Center at 392-5475.
Space in all groups is limited. For more information or to join a group, contact Counseling Services at 392-5475 or drop by EN B 219. Call the Center to suggest other group topics!
Other Groups not already scheduled that may run based on student interest:
Meditation/mindfulness: In this weekly step-by-step psycho-educational group you can begin to understand how your brain works and learn meditation and mindfulness techniques that are sure to help reduce the stress and chaos in your life. Mindfulness helps to calm the mind and body as well as bring awareness to the negative patterns that impact our life so that we can change them for the better!
Graduate Student Forum: Explore your changing personal and professional life in a safe environment that encourages personal growth, self-challenge, and mutual support. Build your confidence and learn to manage the stress of balancing school, jobs, internships, and relationships.
LGBTQI and Questioning Group: A confidential place to connect and discuss whatever’s on your mind with other LGBTQI or questioning students who get it… relationships, coming out, family, body image, defining yourself, stress, finding a place on campus, religion, planning for majors, careers, transitions.
Family Issues: Family…can’t live with them, can’t live without them! Explore how your family experiences
and role in your family influences how you approach life and relationships now. Get
support in defining your own life path and learning to balancing your needs with others’
Inside Matters: A support group for students suffering from or recovering from an eating disorder. In this confidential environment we will explore, and begin to learn how to manage and cope with the many challenges of eating disorders with others who get it!
Body Wise: An eight-week program designed to help you understand the development of negative body image and the perpetuating factors that keep you from loving your body all in a supportive
and confidential environment.
Life Mastery group: In this group we will examine life choices, identify values, begin to understand personal
barriers to success and to develop goals and action plans to create your own reality
the way you want it!
Adjusting to College
Benefits of group counseling:
Group counseling is a process where 4-10 individuals meet weekly with a professional counselor (facilitator) to discuss specific issues. Members are encouraged to give support to one another and to provide feedback to other members. Students build trusting relationships where members feel safe to explore sensitive issues and resolve emotional difficulties. Members work through these issues through discussion, trying out new behaviors, and paying attention to how they interact with and react to one another. It is an opportunity for students learn how to change life situations for the better.
One great benefit of group counseling is that members are able to relate to others who are in a situation similar to their own. This allows members the opportunity/possibility to see how someone else handled a certain problem and provides a model as to how he/she might handle the same problem. It also fosters empowerment, for example, when a member can report to the other members a successful interaction in dealing with a difficult situation outside of the group. Members learn from each other, and many times, grow together emotionally throughout the group process.
Group counseling is also a safe place where you meet with the same individuals each week. The group is generally closed to anyone else once the core members have been established. When people join a group it is requested that they keep the contents of the group discussions confidential. Disclosing group information outside of the group is inappropriate; therefore, it is stressed that what people talk about or share with the group must remain within the group.
How does group counseling work?
Group counseling can be very successful. It requires a commitment on the part of the
members and the leader to fulfill the contract that is made during the initial meetings
(confidentiality rules and attendance commitments, etc.). When this commitment is
made, and members can talk openly about their issues, the work can begin. Group counseling
is a reflection of what goes on in "real life." The group setting is a place where
the behaviors and emotions that initially brought the individual to group counseling
can surface. When this happens, the dynamics of the group actually allow members to
practice new behaviors and learn new skills that are more appropriate.
With the support of the other group members and the facilitator(s), members learn that they are not alone. Additionally, members and facilitators offer options and use caring confrontation to challenge negative behavior in other group members so that they may develop more positive behaviors.