Circle of women
Supportive small groups can catalyse healing through deep connection

We heal in community. We don’t heal when we feel isolated, but when we feel connected and held.

I know this from the inside out from my own healing journey from CFS (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome) and trauma, and from the journeys I have witnessed in others.

Being social animals, we benefit greatly from having external support systems in place in order to thrive. This blog covers the power of community, relationships and being surrounded by loving support, to underpin your healing path, and how small group coaching can be part of that.

In a women’s circle we can feel held and heard. Recognising how our stories overlap with each other, we realise again that we are not alone on our path. That’s when we can begin to heal trauma.

We’re so deeply connected that when one woman has an insight or shift, the benefits ripple out. Women step in to support each other, to reclaim our power, our love,  becoming more deeply our true selves in circle.  From that nourishing place we can step out to live our potential, to reclaim our health and wellness.

When women are stressed they release oxytocin,  a hormone that supports us to come together. We innately know it’s what we need to do, to protect each other and any young ones in our collective care.

When a community comes together in this way, we sense safety and find a blueprint for a life lived from love and trust. This is one of the keys that will help us to bring healing to early imprints of trauma.

May the world be full of vibrant people who have done the deeper soul and psyche work and are able to offer their gifts to the world. If that is you already, we at the Women’s Wellness Circle would love to hear from you; sharing your healing journey will inspire other women!

Small groups offer a catalytic container for transformation and healing on all levels. Here are six superpowers of small group healing:

1) The space to accept and surrender to what is happening now

One of the first stages in any healing path is to accept how things are in the moment. When we have resistance to our current situation, it puts more stress on our system, and more stress means more symptoms.

When you let go and accept what is, just for now, you create a foundation of inner calm for your nervous system, to support moving towards healing. Small groups give you that much-needed space to take that first step of surrender to ‘what is now’.

Small groups can even help you find the space to be grateful for your health challenges – helping you to recognise that without them, you may not have taken this time for inner work or the experience of being in nourishing and healing group spaces.

2) The opportunity for deep self-care and to learn new tools to help you heal and grow 

Any healing path requires us to be dedicated to self-care. This can look very different for different people, but essentially self-care is anything that deeply nourishes you; that could be meditation, yoga, relaxing in the garden, a walk in the woods, time with friends or a group you love.

In a small coaching group you can practice self-care together and learn new tools to facilitate physical healing. You get the unique opportunity to immerse yourself in deep self-care and radically support the next stage in your wellness recovery.

3) An opportunity to experience a break from your symptoms and give you a sense of what’s possible

When you join a group, and experience acceptance, surrender, self-care and learn new healing tools, you are likely to experience a deeper sense of wellbeing and some easing of your symptoms. This can help to show you what’s possible, which can give you the faith that you can recover. It is crucial to keep coming back to a strong faith in the fact that many people have fully healed from chronic illness, and you can too.

4) Safe space to explore new ways of connection with others

Here’s a note from Jen, a coach and previous WWC co-director, on the surprising effect that joining a small coaching group had on her personal healing journey:

“I was craving support, but was convinced I only needed 1-1 guidance and was not looking for a group setting to deal with anything I was going through. In fact, I was looking for the opposite – to remove myself as much from other people as possible, to avoid the difficult feelings and behaviour that I experienced when around people…..

What very quickly became apparent to me when I joined the small coaching group was that this was a new and different space than anything I had ever experienced. I became aware of how little I trusted others, how guarded I had become and how closed off.

It triggered my Helper and Fixer parts and I found myself tired and confused at the end of sessions. But as time went on, I was invited to bring these very triggered parts and all the issues that were coming to the surface for me into the small circle of women present.

And every time I did, I got the most unexpected things back: understanding, space and air to express myself, validation, deep listening, feedback, holding, empathy, and the one thing I was yearning for the most, connection.

I’ve kept in touch with most of the women I have met through the small circles I joined early on in my journey, and continue to feel connection, inspiration, deep understanding and joy in these relationships.”

Turns out, the one thing I was most fearful of and uncomfortable doing was the exact thing I needed to take my self-awareness, self-care and healing to the next level.

Jen Evans, author and wellness coach

5) The space to release emotions about the past with the alchemy of being a part of a group healing process

Often emotions about the past can remain stuck and frozen, which can contribute to our symptoms. When we take time away from our daily life to be in a healing space with others, we have space to bring the light of awareness to these past events, and gently release what is being held there.

Simply being in a small group of women consciously gathering together can assist this, and it’s especially good to be in a circle where you have the opportunity to learn and practise tools to assist this process. They offer specific support with what you’re working with, within a supportive and held container.

One women’s process can also highlight areas of your own healing process, and where to focus to support deeper levels of healing, to support higher levels of wellness and joy. 

6) Deep belonging

A well-held small group provides the safety and intimacy to go deep into your personal process, supporting deep healing and growth. They build love and belonging into your system, amplifying your healing.

Being in supportive groups was a crucial part of my recovery journey from illness and my spiritual journey to a deeper place of wholeness and joy. May they become a part of yours too.

Frances Goodall, coach and WWC co-director