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Group Process


Nobody Likes Bosses

Posted on November 1, 2015 by

Even an anti-authoritarian household needs agreements—but who and how to enforce them is another question.


Hot Topic, Raw Emotion, and the Spice of Life: Chewing over Food Choice in Community

Posted on June 24, 2015 by

At La’akea, members’ various approaches to food reflect the quest for emotional as well as physical sustainability.


Radical Governance Changes in Two North American Ecovillages

Posted on October 31, 2014 by

Earthaven and Dancing Rabbit embrace their groups’ evolution and growth with innovative new governance and decision-making methods.


Burlington Cohousing’s Excellent Solar Adventures

Posted on January 14, 2014 by

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


Living the Questions

Posted on September 7, 2012 by

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


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

Posted on June 7, 2012 by
5 Comments

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


Busting the Myth, or Changing the Terms?

Posted on June 7, 2012 by

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


“Busting the Myth”

Posted on June 7, 2012 by

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.


Diversity Issues in Los Angeles Eco-Village

Posted on June 7, 2012 by
3 Comments

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.


The Paralysis of Racism in Social Change Groups

Posted on June 7, 2012 by

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


Spirit in the Woods

Posted on March 7, 2012 by

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


Sharing the Path

Posted on March 7, 2012 by

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


Sociocracy

Posted on December 7, 2011 by

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


Social Permaculture

Posted on December 7, 2011 by
1 Comment

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.


Unto the Second Generation

Posted on September 7, 2011 by
12 Comments

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?


The Relationship of Relationships to the Group

Posted on June 7, 2011 by
2 Comments

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.


Shadow Sides of NVC and Co-Counseling

Posted on March 7, 2011 by
1 Comment

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


Hand in Hand, Heart to Heart

Posted on March 7, 2011 by

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.


Poor Minutes Lead to Wasted Hours

Posted on December 7, 2010 by

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 the… Read More


And I Listen

Posted on December 7, 2010 by
2 Comments

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.


Call in the Experts?

Posted on September 7, 2010 by

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 are… Read More


Power and Powerlessness in Community

Posted on September 7, 2010 by

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.


Balancing Powers

Posted on September 7, 2010 by
1 Comment

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


Power and Disempowerment on the Ecobus

Posted on September 7, 2010 by
7 Comments

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 Perspectives on Leadership and Followship

Posted on September 7, 2010 by
1 Comment

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


Being “Overthrown”—A Celebration

Posted on September 7, 2010 by

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.


Open Meetings: Worth the Risk?

Posted on June 7, 2010 by

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 them… Read More


Parenting in Community

Posted on March 7, 2010 by
1 Comment

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.


Network for a New Culture Camps

Posted on March 7, 2009 by

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


Best Meetings

Posted on December 7, 2008 by

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?”


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