It appears to me that sometimes people want to hear conflict where there is none. Sometimes misunderstandings need to come to understandings for growth to happen, in any of these situations, Non violent Communication is a great tool to use to get your point across as well as hear other people’s point.
Some can even manipulate you into conflict unintentionally because of the way their day is going or hormones or whatever is unique to that person. Sometimes people just need to feel heard. When you use this formula, it helps you see more clearly what is REALLY going on.
Something that changed my life was learning to use Marshall Rosenburg’s non violent communication model.
Rosenberg declares that “The primary purpose of Nonviolent Communication (NVC) is to connect with other people in a way that enables giving to take place: compassionate giving. It’s compassionate in that our giving comes willingly from the heart. We are giving service to others and ourselves – not out of duty or obligation, not out of fear of punishment or hope for a reward, not out of guilt or shame, but for what I consider part of our nature. It’s in our nature to enjoy giving to one another.”
The author offers us a new communication context like so: “NVC guides us in reframing how we express ourselves and hear others. Instead of being habitual, automatic reactions, our words become conscious responses based firmly on an awareness of what we are perceiving, feeling and wanting. We are led to express ourselves with honesty and clarity, while simultaneously paying others a respectful and emphatic attention. In any exchange we come to hear our own deeper needs and those of others.”
The Four components of NVC:
1. observation in which we non-judgmentally express what is happening. Stating just the facts is important.
2. feelings in which we express how we feel when we observe this action.This is the most challenging part to develop words that just express how you feel without triggering someone else’s defense.
3. Needs we say what needs of ours are connected to the feelings expressed. It’s also good to say these needs out loud to really get to know ourselves better too.
4. Request the action we request in order to enrich our lives. So many of us get lost in our feeling we forget to get really clear on what we actually want to happen to resolve matters.
It sounds like this ” When you don’t clean your room, I feel sad. I have a need for participation and team work. Could you please participate in keeping a clean house?
“When you enter my property without invitation, I feel like boundaries are crossed, I have a need for privacy, Could you please ask before you come onto my property”
The two parts to NVC communication are: The LISTENING PART
1. Expressing honesty through the four components, above
2. Receiving emphatically through the four components
When listening to the other person, listen for the feeling and need behind each statement without agreeing or disagreeing.
It sounds like this ” I’m hearing that you are feeling sad when I leave the room messy and you have a need for teamwork, I will try my best to get better at cleaning up.”
Blame, insults, put-downs, labels, criticism, comparisons, and diagnoses are all forms of judgment. Good communication must never contain these things. Replace these with expressing honestly and receiving empathically. This will lead to compassionate communication instead of conflict.
It’s been my experience that this technique is very valuable in dealing with people that are very upset, hearing that you are being heard and trying to be understood can really change the dynamics of a situation. Although this takes being grounded yourself, as well as being in touch with the truth of the situation, how you feel, your needs and what you would really like to come from the situation.
You can buy Marshall Rosenburg’s book on non violent communication here. The book is very peace promoting and violence preventing. It has lots of good examples of statements that contain criticism and judgments. These are to be avoided. There are lots of examples of the right way to communicate, to use in place of these communication blocks.