Yes. My sponsor did share a few things about himself to help me relax and identify that I wasn't as unique as I thought I was.
Reading the information in the Big Book, about Step 5, 6, & 7 ahead of time gives some pretty good information, and of course the chapter "Working with others" gives a lot of helpful info. Also, reading the Chapter in the 12 & 12, Bill's essay on Step 5, is some good info.
Much of the same way that I did my 5th Step with my sponsor, I still do today when I listen to 5th Steps. I try to strictly adhere to what's in the Big Book. There will be times that I mix it up a little but (on purpose), because people are different, and I try to establish as much rapport with them that I can while taking them through the Steps.
It's beyond the scope of what we're discussing here on Step 5, but I'll go ahead and throw something in here that has been helpful to me, in being able to help others.
I get totally focused on what the main objective of the 12 Steps is, and that is to produce a Spiritual Awakening, as mentioned in Step 12.
The 12 Steps is a formula, or recipe, to produce a "Spiritual Awakening" that will result in a transformation of thoughts, attitudes and personality -- sufficient enough to assist the person to recover. Some helpful info on this is in the back of the Big Book, Appendex II, Spiritual Experience.
A metaphor that I use sometimes is: it's like baking a cake, or grilling some ribs. The recipe -- if followed precisely -- will produce precisely what the recipe was intended to produce. If you change the recipe, and alter the directions -- you might get a cake, but it won't be like the cake that the recipe intended to bake.
Example: The recipe might call for 2 eggs, and I decide to add 3 eggs to make it better. And, a dash of salt -- and I figure okay, if a dash is good, a handful will be better!
And, rather than mix up the eggs with the other ingredients to make the cake batter -- I think I'll hold off on the eggs until after I take the cake out of the oven, and then pour the eggs over the cake which will make it kind of like French Toast! Oh... and after I mix up the ingredients... I'm going to wait two months to put it in the oven!
Well. Yes, you could say I baked a cake... but, who would want to eat the cake I baked?
In the Forward, to the First Edition of the book Alcoholics Anonymous (which you can find in all future editions) ... it says they are giving us PRECISE instructions on how to recover. So, if we use our best effort to PRECISELY follow those instructions -- we will get what they got. If we alter the instructions -- we'll get something different than what they got. And, the something different -- may not be adequate enough to produce the Spiritual Awakening, and the transformation that will allow them to recover, and to live a life of Happy, Joyous and Free -- while sober.