Group Therapy Descriptions

Inpatient Psychiatric Care For Adults

We encourage patients to participate in the Thoreau Center’s group programming. Our programs are designed to support patient’s recovery and help them acquire knowledge and skills that will help them manage the issues that are important to them. Therapeutic group work also provides support and validation of an individual’s feelings as they are given a platform to share their experiences and thoughts with others.

Groups are an essential part of a patient’s treatment at the Thoreau Center. Groups are led by licensed counselors, licensed addiction counselors, expressive therapists, social workers, nurses and mental health counselors. Below is a listing of the groups that we offer.


This group is for individuals in recovery and uses the Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) model for education, dialogue, sharing and peer support.

Anger Management

This is an educational group focusing on building positive skills to help manage feelings of anger and increase positive communications skills. It additionally addresses the connection between anger and depression and negative behaviors.

Assessment Group

This group provides a time for patients to fill out their self-assessment forms. Staff uses these forms to support and update treatment plans and goals.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Group (CBT) Group

This group focuses on cognitive behavioral techniques which work towards changing behavior patterns through interrupting the cycle of thought, feeling and action. Themes focus on dealing with resiliency, cognitive distortions, automatic thoughts and overcoming fears and phobias.

Communications Group

A theme-focused group that supports increasing verbal and non-verbal communication skills. It addresses communication styles and their effectiveness or lack of effectiveness within various contexts. Role playing and handouts are used to support new learning.

Community Meeting

A time for all patients and staff to discuss creating a positive milieu environment for recovery and to talk about their contribution to the recovery program. Patients are encouraged to bring ideas and concerns about making their stay here most beneficial.

Coping Skills Group

This is a dialectical behavioral therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy and stress management skill based group. The use of skills to manage coping with triggers is critical to recovery. Grounding skills, focusing skills, communication skills and problem solving skills are reviewed for daily application.

Daily Reflections and Substance Abuse Recovery Skills

We offer general recovery groups based on both “Smart Recovery” as well as a “12-Step Model” of sobriety maintenance by offering “Daily Reflections” as a select group for an identified group of patients. The focus will include coping strategies, the role that substance plays in life, relapse, relapse prevention, self-advocacy and how to ask for and use support/treatment.

Current Events

This group supports a daily understanding and orientation about what is going on in the world around us. It can be based on members’ contributions or interests and provides a forum to discuss issues and perspectives about living in the world.

Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) Group

This group uses dialectical behavioral therapy to focus on mindfulness based practices, distress tolerance, emotion regulation and interpersonal effectiveness.

Discharge Planning

This group focuses on setting goals for post-hospitalization. It supports the skills necessary to bring the work of recovery out into one’s daily life. Concrete tools are provided to focus the transition from hospitalization through discharge and goals for the future.

Expressive Therapy Group

This group is a psychotherapy group that integrates the use of art, music, movement, writing and psychodrama. The group supports experiential learning and the integration of alternatives for coping with stress, self-care strategies and developing insight based on creative exploration and self-expression.

Family Issues

The objective of this group is to educate group members about the roles they may play in their families and the ways these roles affect them and their feelings about themselves. It addresses the strengths and weaknesses of the different family roles and characteristics of healthy family systems.

Feelings Vocabulary

This group identifies feeling states and uses a psycho-educational model to help understand feelings better. It supports exploring a range of feelings and ways to manage feelings.

Gentle Stretch and Mindfulness

This group utilizes a mind/body approach to help increase overall functioning and to build skills for future use. Yoga postures are demonstrated for supporting mind/body/spirit integration and practice.

Goals Group

This group begins the day with a brief member check-in regarding feelings and setting a goal for the day. It gives group members a chance to reflect and share while encouraging them to set an intention for the day as a focusing tool.

Individual Assignments

This group uses a structured set of handouts that focus on different tools for coping and self-development. With the help of a mental health counselor or expressive therapist, handouts are chosen to focus on individual recovery work.

Medication Education

This group is an educational group that focuses on medication through addressing the major drug classifications: their effects, side effects, drug interactions, necessity of compliance and follow-up care.

Nutrition Group

This group provides patients with a comprehensive outlook on the biological responses to nutrients during the various stages of illness and recovery. Cognitive and behavioral techniques for combating common distortions about nutritional information will be reviewed. The information is presented in an interactive environment that encourages and enriches the learning.

Psycho-Educational Group

This group is aimed at dispelling myths and providing accurate and up-to-date information about a theme or diagnosis. Topics include medication management and education, stress management and healthy living.

Therapeutic Games

This group provides a forum for patients and staff to get together to play games, become comfortable in the milieu and encourages sharing among participants.

Weekend Planning

This group encourages patients to lead a balanced lifestyle by planning goals related to the use of leisure time including intellectual stimulation, exercise, sleep, good nutrition and emotional and spiritual well-being.

Wellness Group

This is an educational and skills-based group focused on various themes addressing the concept of wellness. Themes include self-esteem, identity, symptom management, goal setting and coping skills.