Is Group Counselling Right for Me?

Group counselling can be a powerful and valuable venue for change and growth. Group counselling offers many benefits such as peer support, reduced stigma and isolation, as well as normalization of feelings and expereinces. Research indicates that group therapy is just as effective as individual counselling. Before joining a group, you will meet a group facilitator one-on-one to discuss what to expect, group content, and whether or not the group is a right fit for you at this time. More and more students are joining groups for the opportunity to connect with peers and feel less alone! Consider if group is the next step in your wellness journey.

 

Fall 2021 Group Counselling Offerings
** We will offer both in-person and zoom groups (stated below) 

Therapods

Therapods are all anxiety based, however some additional themes we are offering this semester:

·         Men’s Group

·         Sexual Trauma

·         Dysregulated Eating Habits

·         OCD

Who? Anyone! Therapods are ideal for students looking to develop coping skills and strategies to feel better and manage their stress, triggers, and anxiety in healthier ways. Ideal for students experiencing feelings of overwhelm, anxiety and depression.

What? Therapods are a blended type of Group and Personal Counselling that provides students with more consistent and regular counselling sessions. Therapods run 3-4 sessions in length, are offered biweekly, and in small groups of 3-4 students per pod. You will stay together with the same people throughout the 3/4 sessions.

When? Therapods run throughout the semester and start at various times. Call our intake workers today to find out when you can start.

Where? Therapods are primarily in person (AH153)– however we also have zoom therapods available to students as well.

Why? The most common feedback we receive from students in therapods is – the comfort in knowing they are not alone! Group therapy can be very anxiety provoking in the beginning, but growth isn’t always comfortable. We encourage you to lean into the discomfort as you will have the opportunity to gain essential skills to support your emotional, physical, psychological, and academic wellbeing!

How? Clients can be added to therapods by their counsellor or by the intake worker.

Finding Emotional Balance (DBT Skills)

Who?  This group is for anyone who wants to learn to manage their emotions and reactions/behaviours as well as build better relationships.

What?  This group will explore skills and perspectives that will help you manage big emotions, shift problem behaviours, and build healthier relationships. This group is adapted from the Dialectical Behavioural Therapy (DBT) method and teaches DBT strategies. You will have a chance to explore your life values and each week use the skills learned to put those values into action. This is a space to learn to trust yourself and your abilities to live the life you want to live. 

When?  Every Tuesday from 1:30 pm – 3:00 pm for 9 weeks. The first session starts January 18, 2022.

Where?  The meeting will have a recurring Zoom link that will be sent to all group members before group starts. 

Why?  Emotions can be intimidating and building and maintaining relationships can be confusing. We know that as our stress levels increase, our ability to manage our emotions and relationships can be challenged. The knowledge and skills discussed in this group will empower you to manage your emotions in a healthy way that benefits your relationship to yourself and others. Connecting in a group counselling setting allows for a sense of community and an understanding that you are not alone.  

How?  You can be added to the group by your counsellor or by the intake worker. The group facilitators, Brianne and Lindsay, will contact you before group to give you a warm welcome and answer any questions. 

*Group is closed to new members once it starts. Contact our Intake Coordinators at Counselling Services to be placed on a waitlist if you miss the deadline.

ADHD Connection + Support Group

What? This is a strengths-focused group for individuals with ADHD. Different creative directions will be provided each week to promote self-exploration and reflection. Group sessions will then focus on exploring and sharing what members have created.  

Who? This group is for anyone who has an ADHD diagnosis that wants to learn, grow and connect. It is recommended that you complete the ADHD Skills Workshop before joining this group.

When? It is offered every Wednesday throughout the semester from 10am - 11am, starting on January 28, 2022.

Where? This group will meet in-person at Counselling Services - AH153. 

How? Clients can be added to the group by their counsellor or by the intake worker. Carly, the group faciliator, will contact clients before group to give a warm welcome and to answer any questions.

*Group is closed to new members once it starts. Contact our Intake Coordinators at Counselling Services to be placed on a waitlist if you miss the deadline.

Grief + Loss Group

Who? This group Is for anyone who has experienced a loss of a loved one. Whether this loss is recent or historical, if you feel the residual pain of losing someone you love, we welcome you to join this group.

What?  No experience is the same and grief is not linear – this group is designed to help members understand their grief and how to live with their new normal. Members will gain insight into their personal healing journey and develop coping tools and strategies to get through daily life.

When?  Weekly for 4 weeks, on Fridays @ 1:30pm – 2:30pm, starting Jan 14 (round one – IN PERSON), Mar 4 (round 2 - ZOOM)

Where?   The in-person sessions are located at Counselling Services AH153.

Why? Grief and loss can affect your daily functioning, interpersonal relationships, expectations or fears of the future, and ability to connect with others. Hopefully the strength of a community, personal insight, and coping skills will allow you to honour your grief and loss journey.

How? Clients can be added to the group by their counsellor or by the intake workers. Jennifer and Lindsay, the group facilitators, will contact clients before group to give a warm welcome and to answer any questions.

*Group is closed to new members once it starts. Contact our Intake Coordinators at Counselling Services to be placed on a waitlist if you miss the deadline.

Mindfulness Self Compassion Wellness Group

Who?: This group is for anyone struggling with self-criticism, self judgement, and perfectionism, or just for those who are wanting to learn skills to be kinder to themselves!

What?: The group will feature excerpts from the Mindful Self-Compassion Workbook by Kristin Neff and Christopher Germer to provide insight and help you develop practical skills to decrease self-criticism and increase self-compassion in daily life. The science-based workbook was designed to provide step-by-step guidance focusing on the three elements of self-compassion (self-kindness, common humanity and mindfulness) to break free from unkind self-judgement and impossibly high expectations. 

Why? Many people find it easier to be kinder and supportive of others and struggle to accept and support themselves. Learning to have more self-compassion can help students build resilience to thrive, cope better when faced with adversity, decrease anxiety, become more self-confident and improve emotional wellbeing. Research has shown that self-compassion is a valuable source of strength, hope, coping and resilience.

When?: The 5-week group runs every Wednesday 2:00 – 3:00 pm from January 19 – February 16.

Where?: Zoom. A Zoom link will be emailed to students before the workshop begins. 

How?: Clients can be added to the group by their counsellor or by the intake worker. Brianne, the group facilitator, will contact clients before the group to give a warm welcome and to answer any questions 

Connection + Support (for Anxiety)

Who? This group Is for anyone who experiences anxiety regardless of the trigger (ie: school, social life, new situations). This group is for people who are interested in exploring their anxiety in a space where they can hear from other group members what their anxiety looks like and how they have learned to manage it while learning tangible, evidenced based skills and tools to manage their own anxiety.

What? Exploring Anxiety is a process group for members to talk about their anxiety, hear about others experiences, receive compassion and validation, show empathy, naming feelings, and learn and enhance coping tools to better manage their anxiety.

When? Every Wednesday from 2:30pm - 4pm. Group starts January 26, 2022.

Where? The meeting will have a recurring zoom link that will be sent before group starts.

Why? Process groups are supported by research for a wide range of concerns from attachment, depression, anxiety, stress to just about any aspect of mental health.  The reason why group works is because the group setting mirrors issues of the real world – while providing a feeling of connection, validation, safety, support, and feedback.

How? Clients can be added to the group by their counsellor or by the intake workers. Danielle and Bryan, the group facilitators, will contact clients before group to give a warm welcome and to answer any questions.

*Group is closed to new members once it starts. Contact our Intake Coordinators at Counselling Services to be placed on a waitlist if you miss the deadline.

Connecting with Self + Others Group

Who? This group for people curious about better understanding themselves and who they are in relation to all types of relationships.

What? Connecting with Self and Others is a process group for members to practice speaking up, challenging others, receiving compassion, showing empathy, naming feelings, and experiencing deeper connection. This is a space for members to explore personal goals while reconnecting with the wisdom, strength, and resilience of both participants and yourself. 
 

When? Every Tuesday from 5:00-6:30 pm. The Group starts  January 25, 2022. 

Where? The meeting will have a recurring zoom link that will be sent before group starts.

Why? Process groups are supported by research for a wide range of concerns from attachment, depression, anxiety, stress to just about any aspect of mental health.  The reason why group works is because the group setting mirrors issues of the real world - just with more safety, support, and feedback.

How? Clients can be added to the group by their counsellor or by the intake worker. Kaylee, the group faciliator, will contact clients before group to give a warm welcome and to answer any questions.

*Group is closed to new members once it starts. Contact our Intake Coordinators at Counselling Services to be placed on a waitlist if you miss the deadline.

2SLGBTQIA+ Group

Who?  This group is a safe and non-judgmental place to seek support and make connections with other LGBTQ+ individuals.

When? Wednesdays @ 2pm - 3:30pm, Starting January 19, 2022.

Where?  This Group is offered via Zoom.

Why? To promote mental wellbeing and health through topic based discussion. Topics include: Coming Out to family and friends, Gender Identity, Dating and Relationships, Substance Use, Oppression and Depression.

How?   To register, email the facilitator Shieghla at shieghla.Kowalzik@albertahealthservices.ca or call us @ 403-317-2845

*This is an open group for anyone to join at any time.   

Peer Support Group

Hosted by the Student Wellness Ambassadors Program (SWAP)

Who? This peer support group is for any student who feels they would benefit from connecting with other students in a safe and supportive environment.

What? This ongoing session is hosted by the Student Wellness Ambassadors, who are trained peer listeners. This will be an open space for students to share their needs and concerns, whether they be personal, academic or career related. Some sessions may be structured around certain topics such a stress management, wellness, and academic success. Peers can offer each other a lot of support, guidance, and normalization. Please note: this is not a professional group counselling session.

When? To be determined for Spring 2022 Semester.

Where? In the Counselling Services group room, Anderson Hall 153.

Why? To create an opportunity for students to connect, learn, and grow from their peers. 

How? Students are required to register to attend. You can attend weekly or whenever it works with your schedule. You are not required to attend all sessions or stay the entire 1.5 hours.