The daily life of Nonviolent Communication

Posted by on Jun 6, 2014 in Wellness, Writing | 0 comments

The daily life of Nonviolent Communication

The juice of nonviolent communication (NVC) for me has been in noticing when violent communication wants to arise within me, pausing, and then following the golden rule.  This pause becomes a form of self-care, because ultimately I want to be treated with kindness, and so it is my responsibility to treat others that way.  Sometimes that means waiting until my walls have softened and the energy has settled from my ego back into my heart and gut, and then speaking from that natural space of what is really going on in me: my feelings and needs.  This can be a majorly vulnerable space, because by settling down I am honoring the commitment I have to another, and opening up to their response, not knowing how it will go.  This takes much more courage than being right.  Even more difficult are waiting and not engaging at all, because the energy and relationship is not worth the effort for me.

This is an act of kindness we give ourselves, a kind of power to choose the relationships that will give us the greatest healing, mutual respect, and life force.  In any moment we have the power to choose how we will respond.  There is a lesson in all things, if we are open to seeing it, “When we do something we don’t like, the first step is to mourn, to empathize with ourselves about the need that wasn’t met. And very often we’ll have to do that by ‘hearing through’ the judgments we have been programmed to make.  In this way we can actually make good use of our depression, guilt, and shame.  We can use those feelings as an alarm clock to wake us up to the fact that at this moment we really are not connected to life–life defined as being in touch with our needs.  We’re in our head playing violent video games with ourselves, calling ourselves names” (Rosenberg, 2005, p. 65).  This may seem selfish at first, and in a way it is a form of destruction, but it frees up our energy for the path of creation, the path of love, the path towards our vision and mission.  The beauty of NVC is that it is about surfacing underlying feelings and needs.  This work, when done well, can connect us to the universality of feeling and being alive.  It can connect us more intimately with one another, and with all that is.

Authentic change always comes from within, we cannot change others or be victims of another person’s will.  But, when we share whats true inside of us, or listen to the heart of another, it usually is something that naturally moves us.  That is the power of NVC, a sort of power together, not a power-over.  It’s all a learning experience, a voyage into the unknown of relationships, and coming home with a little more wisdom, and a little more love.



Rosenberg, M. B. (2005). Speak peace in a world of conflict: What you say next will change your world. PuddleDancer Press.

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