Combating Stress and Anxiety through Support Groups
Studies reveal that people with good friends are more able to cope with stress and anxiety than people who don’t have any companions whose shoulders they can cry on. 85% of people today are said to suffer from stress and anxiety problems one way or another and these people will be able to handle stress and anxiety better if they find the courage to talk about it and ask for help and support.
Talking about Your Problems is Not a Weakness
Many individuals are in the opinion that talking about their problems is almost akin to revealing their weaknesses or admitting to their inability to cope with their problems. They must understand that talking is completely different from whining; it’s a fact that the act of talking is a way of releasing our pent-up emotions. You’re just letting off steam, so to speak, and that shall not be construed in any way as begging for pity or attention. It is also not another form of complaining but simply your way of asking for empathy. We feel better when people empathize with our situations and that’s why we shouldn’t keep our emotions to ourselves. It’s destructive rather than constructive.
Factors to Determine the Best Support Group for Your Needs
Since we are all unique individuals, it’s possible that our needs for a support group are unique as well. What may work for you may not be suitable for another so it’s best to base your decision on your preferences alone.
Individual or Group Support
As mentioned previously, some people find it extremely difficult to talk about their feelings and problems in life. If this is your case, it may be best to start out with individual consultations with your therapist. Once you get comfortable with talking openly to a stranger, you could then move on to the next level and join a small support group.
Focal Point of Support Group
There are hundreds of support group to choose from and each support group has its own focal point of interest. Obviously, Alcoholics Anonymous is for the rehabilitation of alcoholics while there are other support groups that concentrate on increasing the self-confidence of its members. Choose the support group that can truly help you cope with your problems and consequently, eliminate stress and anxiety from your life. If you’re a workaholic and too much overtime is the main reason why you’re too jumpy most of the time, find a support group that’s specifically meant to treat workaholics like you.
Time and Location of Meetings
It is best that you choose to join a support group that holds its meetings at the time and place you’re sure to be available. Choosing a support group, in spite of its great objectives and wonderful staff, that’s located in the next state would be highly impractical as you may have to travel for hours every time there’s a meeting.
Type of Communication
Most support groups hold meetings where members can meet each other in person. People who prefer anonymity however may opt for other means of communication like joining an online group or talking to a volunteer on the phone. While face-to-face meetings are generally more effective, the end choice belongs entirely to you so choose the type of support group that you’re most comfortable and most likely to stick with for a long time.