chapter  5
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We are pressed to attend to many things with the new group (especially in the first session), such as putting members at ease, encouraging them to return for the next session, helping them to begin seeing their commonalities, and helping them begin to get to know one another. We cannot do everything at once, however; thus we need to develop priorities, and the goals and norms we choose to prioritize at this early time in the group’s life will set the tone for its future (Glassman 2009; Lowy 1976; Newstetter 1935). For example, if we hope to set the stage for mutual aid, members must leave the first session with a sense of their human connection, which will help them open up to one another as resources. If we want them to begin to see the commonalities of their needs, desires, and goals, then we also want them to leave the first session with a sense of their connection to the group’s purpose.