Ideas for facilitating Online Group Therapy sessions with Adolescents or Adults, using "Roads" & "The River" cards
The therapist chooses a Road card in advance and shows it to the group, asking: "If this card were to represent the current period in our group's journey, how would you describe it?"
Once each member has described the way s/he perceives the road or the period, the therapist invites the members to mention one thing that could help them as the group's journey continues.
This can stimulate discussion over the current format of online group sessions and the different needs and expectations of each member from their fellow members, 'the group' or the therapist.
To conclude the session the therapist invites the members to come up together with a name for the current period of their joint group's journey.
The therapist says: "A river card can represent our experiences and encounters in different environments of our lives". S/he picks up a random River card and shows it to the group, saying: "I invite each of you to search this card for a metaphorical gift that you would like to give yourself. A gift that can support you in a process that you are dealing with in your life."
Such metaphorical gifts can include, the ability to let go/ to intensify the flow/ to be as calm as the water/ to become as stable as the illustrated tree, and so on.
Each member can then either describe the gift that they chose at the metaphorical level, or directly tie it to their real-life issues.
To conclude the session, the therapist asks: "Was there something in another member's work today that touched you? Was there something that surprised you?"
The therapist encourages the group members to think of a personal goal or a wish that they have in an area of their life. This can be a goal related to their career, a hope regarding a relationship, an attribute that they would like to nurture in themselves, and so on.
The therapist chooses two Road cards (or two River cards) and shows them to the group. S/he says: "Choose one of these cards to represent the things that are currently making it difficult for you to achieve your goal and the second card to represent the things that could help you to achieve it."
The therapist allows the members a couple of minutes to observe the cards quietly and then asks them to write down the things that come up.
When all members are done writing, the therapist invites them to share their thoughts and feelings.
To end the session, the therapist asks each member to describe or draw a River/Road that could represent one step in their future flow/journey towards their desired goal
To learn how to use these cards and others, please join one of our online workshops
The River Guide-book includes numerous suggestions for using the cards in settings of Individual Therapy, Couple/Family Therapy and Group Therapy. Most suggestions suit “Roads” cards as well. Many of the suggestions can be adapted to online sessions.
Written by Gali Salpeter - Story & Therapy
Expressive Therapist. Spec. Drama and NarrativeTherapy (M.A.)(NFKUT)(I.C.E.T)