A Few Benefits of a Healthy Support Group
Wednesday, September 5th, 2012
I’m asked a lot…do I still meet with the support group I started with three years ago? And my answer is Yes!! I honestly can’t even imagine not meeting with them. And it is sincerely my hope that we would all have a place where we can take off our shoes, curl up on the couch, and be real.
In fact, I consider it a privilege to meet regularly with women, whether I am a part of the group or whether I am facilitating. It can be incredible to sit in the room and watch stories unfold, light bulbs go off and hearts change forever.
Here are a few reasons being involved in a healthy support group has been so beneficial for me:
- This is where I am learning to be emotionally intimate with others. It has always been scary to reveal the true person inside myself. I’ve always chosen the safer (and more dysfunctional) way: hiding myself. It’s self-preservation. I don’t have to be real, I don’t have to be vulnerable; and thus I don’t have to risk feeling hurt. Think of emotional intimacy as In-To-Me-See. And as a side-note, by practicing being real and authentic within the group, my hope is that I can it to the next level by practicing this in the “real world”.
- This is where I witness the Holy Spirit doing some amazing work. It happens every time. As someone talks, I will keep tabs on how I am feeling. And if I tear up, or if my heart hurts….anything…I know that it is the Spirit’s way of poking me and telling me there is something there for me, too. I’m not always able to process it in the moment, but I know I need to LISTEN and FEEL for this. And when it happens, start asking WHY.
- This is where I know my girls will hold me to a higher standard. So, as I go about my week, if I have a poor interaction with Jason, for instance, I begin to think about having to go back to the group and report this to my group. And I realize I don’t want to have to tell them how horribly I’ve acted. And it helps encourage me to do it right.
Do you have a place that you can call home? Where you can be just as God made you? And where you can begin to work at being an even better wife, friend, daughter, sister? I believe that there is a place like this for every soul. If you’ve answered no to these questions, start praying for God to put people in your life that can hold you up, speak into you, encourage you; and where you can do the same for them.