There are pros and cons of a body image group that meets IRL. With online meetings, it takes a different level of consciousness to connect with your fellow group members, which is at the heart of why group can be beneficial.
Here are some ways of getting the most out of the time we spend together each week…
Focus on the here-and now: what is happening in the group (or inside of you) moment-to-moment. What happens when you feel closer to or more distant from others? What is happening between other group members? Though it may feel different, try to share these observations with the group, as it can provide the group members important information that they are coming to group to receive.
*For your exploration: how able were you to do this in the first group?
Try to be as direct as possible about your observations and be open to others’ experiences. Telling a story is sometimes a way of being known, but it can also be a way of avoiding dialogue and intimacy with people who are there to connect with you in group. Try to dialogue with others.
*For your exploration: In what ways might talking to just the group leader (essentially, trying to have Individual Therapy while people in group watch and wait their turn) feel more comfortable than dialoguing with group members about what I notice and how I feel?
Focus on the relationships with group members. Put a priority on noticing what is happening inside the group. Try and explore with the group what you notice.
*For your exploration: How might this way of approaching the group experience differ from what you may have expected to do in our time together?
Before or after you’ve journaled/meditated/talked with a trusted person about each of these, take a few minutes to do some guided breathing.