Category Archives: Group Process

Burlington Cohousing’s Excellent Solar Adventures

Burlington Cohousing’s Excellent Solar Adventures

When community members want to place “private” panels on “public” roofs, don’t expect clear sailing.More…

Living the Questions

Living the Questions

Belfast Cohousing & Ecovillage grapples with obstacles to create a visionary housing project in rural Maine.More…

Busting the Myth that Consensus-with-Unanimity Is Good for Communities

How can a diverse group best make decisions? After many years advocating it, the author concludes that consensus is not the answer.More…

Busting the Myth, or Changing the Terms?

Busting the Myth, or Changing the Terms?

Want a “problem” person to behave differently? Give a different response.More…

“Busting the Myth”

“Busting the Myth”

When assessing why a community is struggling to make decisions, we need to ask first how they handle conflict resolution, group-process training, and entrenched patterns.More…

Diversity Issues in Los Angeles Eco-Village

Diversity Issues in Los Angeles Eco-Village

A longtime ecovillage activist moves beyond denial to recognize the institutional racism affecting not only her society and her community, but her own way of thinking.More…

The Paralysis of Racism in Social Change Groups

When a member of a minority population claims racism, how does a group committed to racial nondiscrimination respond?More…

Spirit in the Woods

Spirit in the Woods

At New View Cohousing, practicing consensus, navigating illness, and simply
sharing lives are continuing spiritual exercises.More…

Sharing the Path

Even “non-spiritual” groups can benefit through a multitude of simple practices that deepen participants’ connections with themselves, one another, and the sacred.More…

Sociocracy

Lost Valley Educational Center avoids collapse and reinvigorates itself by applying a new approach to governance combining the best of diverse models.More…

Social Permaculture

While expert at understanding ecological connections, permaculturalists often founder in relating with one another. Applying permaculture principles to group dynamics can help us work together more effectively.More…

Unto the Second Generation

Unto the Second Generation

When a cohousing group’s honeymoon ends, and economic stress dictates selling units to any willing buyers, can a community’s core values and connections endure?More…

The Relationship of Relationships to the Group

The Relationship of Relationships to the Group

Relationships don’t exist in a vacuum. Through a culture of communication and support, communities can create the healthy container which relationships need in order to flourish.More…

Shadow Sides of NVC and Co-Counseling

Shadow Sides of NVC and Co-Counseling

To make best use of nonviolent communication and co-counseling, avoid these traps.More…

Hand in Hand, Heart to Heart

With loving help from others, the old emotional distresses that can sabotage both our mental health and our relationships in community can be cleared and permanently resolved.More…

Poor Minutes Lead to Wasted Hours

Poor Minutes Lead to Wasted Hours

Author: Laird Schaub Published in Communities Magazine Issue #149 Good records of what happened at meetings are important for a variety of reasons: ● Informing members who missed the meeting what happened. The minutes should include sufficient detail that people will be able to tell if points dear to them have already surfaced in theMore…

And I Listen

Howling, shouting, cries of despair, and The Pierced One greet a parent on her first visit to her daughter’s adopted community. Luckily, through lots of talking and listening, things improve.More…

Call in the Experts?

Author: Beatrice Briggs Published in Communities Magazine Issue #148 Q. Our group is very divided. We need to make major decisions regarding finances, organizational structures, and policies, at a time when interpersonal tensions have reached a boiling point. Certain individuals and factions seem to be locked in power struggles, and at this point we areMore…

Power and Powerlessness in Community

A community member transcends a feeling of powerlessness when he inadvertently comes up with a brilliant idea about how to organize cooking groups, and others join him in implementing it.More…

Balancing Powers

In a healthy community, leadership and followship are equally important roles, each with vital skill sets that can assure effective teamwork.More…

Power and Disempowerment on the Ecobus

Power and Disempowerment on the Ecobus

Some saw this radical environmental education program as a “cult,” others as an intensely focused experience of challenge and growth. Had participants lost their individuality, or gained a new sense of self?More…

More Perspectives on Leadership and Followship

The author identifies additional leadership skills, cautions against blind followship, and reflects on the many types of power in cooperative groups.More…

Being “Overthrown”—A Celebration

The founder of Enright Ridge Urban Ecovillage describes what it’s like to be criticized, marginalized, stripped of leadership responsibilities, and given the opportunity to explore a new role.More…

Open Meetings: Worth the Risk?

Author: Beatrice Briggs Published in Communities Magazine Issue #147 Q: Our group is committed to education and to sharing our lives in community openly with others. We frequently host visitors, and also offer regular workshops and courses. We have traditionally welcomed visitors and program participants to attend our weekly community meetings, believing it gives themMore…

Parenting in Community

Though “baby having” had not been a consensus decision, a small community embraces a newborn, survives his infancy, and bonds like any other family: doing each other’s dishes, snuggling on the couch, and fighting over who gets a shower before the hot water runs out.More…

Network for a New Culture Camps

Participants in NFNC’s Summer Camps explore intimacy, transparency, freedom of choice, personal responsibility, sexuality, and new ways of being, teaching, and learning.More…

Best Meetings

Three group-process experts answer the question: “Please tell us a story of one of the best meetings you ever attended (as participant or facilitator). What was great about it? What do you think made it turn out so well?”More…

Abundance and Scarcity in the Goodenough Community

A community confronts economic adversity by remaining constant in relationship, holding financial losses in common, and working together in fundraising, educational programs, and new projects.More…

Business and Well-Being

Author: Tree Bressen Published in Communities Magazine Issue #140 Q: Historically, our group has felt fairly unified in our core values. Our business discussions and decisions rested on certain basic assumptions and expectations, including the importance of respecting others, welcoming feedback, accepting personal responsibility for feelings and actions, avoiding blame, and—to the best of ourMore…

Every Politician Should Live in a Commune

After living in the PRAG House collective for 25 years before running for office, a Seattle City Councilor recommends that anyone entering politics consider experiencing intentional community first.More…

We happily link to the following organizations, all of whom share our strong commitment to promoting community and a more cooperative world:
Cohousing The Federation of Egalitarian Communities - Communes Coop Community Cooperative Sustainable Intentional North American Students of Cooperation Global Ecovillage Network
Special thanks to the sponsors of our Art of Community Events.