DSM: Introduction to support groups... =)

Marko Koskinen (marko@vapaus.net)
Thu, 16 Nov 2000 21:20:26 +0200

The basic principles I would suggest for a support group are following:

- It is good to start the support group with a fast round where
everybody tells something good and new what has happened. That brings
their thoughts to the present moment away from their distress.
- Have turns, so that everybody gets their turn to say what they have to
say or show emotions.
- No interrupting!
- Divide the time for each member so that everybody gets equal time to
talk - then everybody can concentrate more easily on the person talking
and they don't have to use energy to find a good place where to
interrupt and have their own say. Also the person who's talking doesn't
have to spend energy on thinking that should (s)he stop talking and give
turn to another one. This also helps the person talking to feel safe and
be more able to show oneself more openly.
- No commenting and definitely no criticizing! Just pure admiration and
- Everybody talks about their own businesses on their own turn and even
then they shouldn't comment on others' talks.
- End the support group with a round where everybody tells eg. something
that (s)he admires or appreciates about the person sitting next to
him/her and about oneself.
- You can have a topic for each meeting, but it's not nescessary.
- The leader should have someone supporting him/her. This is important
because the existanse of the support group depends on the leader and if
(s)he feels uncomfortable, the group will stop.
- Stick to these rules! They are well tested and have shown to be

If you want more information, please ask.


Rick Stansberger wrote:
> Marko Koskinen wrote:
> > The only way to make some real changes in the schools is to support
> > teachers, form support groups and break the traditional isolation that
> > is so too damn common among teachers.
> Marko, this is work I would love to do -- but I don't know how.

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