We understand that joining care groups is a new experience for most of us. Here you’ll find information on the process and benefits of support groups to hopefully ease some of your concerns.
Care groups are an exceptionally powerful way to feel supported in our distress.
KindSpace groups are created to feel intimate. Each group meets online once a week (unless noted otherwise). We talk. You can listen, if you don’t feel ready to share. There are no judgments and plenty of compassion.
We always begin with an intake call – an introductory chat – where we talk about how the group can best support you.
If you join, we will send you all the information you need – from login information to some rules and guidelines that will help you make the most of your sessions with us. We are also here to answer all your questions.
We learn we are not alone in our distress.
Often in the face of challenges, we feel alone and isolated in the world. Sometimes we feel like no one will understand us, and sometimes it feels like we might be the only ones going through something. This is rarely true. When we share in a compassionate space, we immediately begin to feel better because we feel understood.
Each KindSpace brings together people going through similar challenges so that you are amid others who will understand exactly what you’re going through.
We share our distress to reduce to burden on any one individual.
Troubles are easier when there are others to share them with. Too often we’re left only to our own resources even though our problems and circumstances are bigger than us.
Support groups play a key role in creating sources of support, care, empathy and compassion which lie outside of us. We rely on them to nurture ourselves, and return replenished to our face our circumstances.
We learn to cope and feel hopeful.
Being with others as we all go through similar circumstances exposes us to the many ways in which each person is coping. This gives us clarity and perspective about our own lives. Seeing others get better makes us hopeful about our own situation.
Sometimes it’s easier to talk to a group of strangers.
Our friends and families sometimes have a fixed understanding of us which makes them receive us a particular way. This is natural, but sometimes it helps to have a fresh set of non-judgmental ears to hear us out.
Similarly, sometimes we’re worried about burdening our friends and family with our own distress – we may not want to bother our elderly parents, or may feel that our siblings or friends have their own busy lives. A group takes away these concerns and allows us to open ourselves up in a completely new way.
Listen and share – both.
Sometimes we don’t have words for our own distress; we can find these words from the stories of others which helps us make sense of what is happening within us. We may even re-evaluate our own approach or reframe our own story. This is the essence of all therapeutic change.
Also, by consciously listening to others, we contribute to their emotional health. This is also a necessary interpersonal facet that we take back to our loved ones, our work colleagues and neighbors and create better communication all around us.
The positive effects do not end with us.
When we feel replenished and heard, this affects those around us – our children, friends, family – because we’re able to relate to them from a space of calm and fullness, as opposed to to reacting to them from exhaustion or frustration. We learn how to listen better to them, and even teach them how to better listen to us.
Co-empathy regulates us.
From infancy, we have an innate need to communicate our distress to others. For example, infants cry to communicate. We feel calmer when those around us are able to be calm with & for us. This is called co-empathy and is a natural outcome of human connection. This is how babies calm themselves sometimes even as soon as their parents enter the room.
Support groups work similarly. They leverage our ability to calm each other. Even when we are distressed, the calm of our fellow members & facilitators can soothe us.
Your sharing helps not only you, but also others.
Helping others through sharing increases our feelings of purpose and goodness in the world. Many of us feel the impetus to channel our distress towards alleviating similar suffering in others.
Every time we share, we make it easier for someone else to do so.
Each of our groups is carefully created to bring all of these benefits to each member. We only ask that when you join, you bring your story and share it with the group.