etiquette

  1. Treat other group members with the dignity and respect you would like to have them show you.
  2. Share rather than teach. The group is not the forum to impress others with your strengths, rather explore your vulnerabilities and life challenges.
  3. Acknowledge the group as a social microcosm, fellow members present an opportunity to help you resolve difficulties you experience in the world.
  4. Use "I statements" in your sharing to ensure effective communication of your experience.
  5. Strive to be honest; we spend much of our life wrapped up in denial, repression and delusion.
  6. Don't abuse your power-knowing more than others about a particular subject or experience does not give you the right to dominate or intimidate.
  7. Take responsibility if you have caused hurt in the group by projecting your own feelings onto others. Validate other members' experience even if you do not fully understand the source of their hurt.
  8. When you experience resistance about acknowledging a behavior or challenge, explore the possibility that group members may be presenting you with a growth opportunity rather than a threat.
  9. Exercise control over your behavior, resist the temptation to act out in impulsive and destructive ways that have you feeling guilty afterwards. Filter your responses checking for unhealthy defensive behavior.
  10. Whilst it is natural to gravitate toward some members more than others resist the temptation to form cliques that gang up on other members. Remain mindful of your interactions and operate for the benefit of the group as a whole.
  11. Be forgiving of other members' mistakes. If you choose to comment on destructive behavior, do so constructively refraining from sarcasm and humiliation.
  12. Finally, if you cannot resolve a personal challenge in the group, consult directly with the therapist by email.