In working with hundreds of people over the years, and of course being human myself, the issue of assumptions has come up again and again as a great source of disconnection and suffering. We have explored some key assumptions that seem to be particularly troublesome.
When I saw this title on a blog post I read, delivered to me from one of my favorite websites – Food 52, I immediately thought - oh yes, this is what I say to people over and over about relationships.
Sexual chemistry is fun. Our neurological and biochemical response to meeting a mate haven’t evolved much in the past 13,000 years. When you meet a person you like and who likes you, and has the promise of forever, biochemically, your body is telling you that you are safe.
In this day and age, it is often difficult to think in those kinds of practical terms. You just get happy.
This week I have the opportunity to mourn some interactions I had over the weekend.
What does that mean?
It means that I had some experiences that I feel less than excited about. In the moment they were a bit awkward. I was feeling a bit confused, and disappointed, even a little sad in the moment. Very aware that I wished ‘it’ was different.
I was painting rocks this morning and was reminded of the simplicity of navigating relationships.
This word that I (and most NVC trainers) talk about endlessly. NEEDS. What are they? Why does it seem so difficult for some to ‘get’ it?
Well, it happened. I got mad. At Steve.
How often to you take a breath and consider what you are thinking? Here's a little story about how doing it more might dramatically change your life for the better.
In Nonviolent Communication classes we spend a whole bunch of time figuring out how to feel our feelings. How do we notice them? How to distinguish feelings from thoughts, games to discern one feeling from another. Practices to enhance our capacity to say what they are. We have sheets and cards and magnets and games. All so we can know what our feelings are.
And now you want to share them.
We all know what this means. Ab work.
And, if you have a trainer, you might learn quickly that having a strong core is not just ab work. It is strengthening all the muscles, including the abdominals so that we are strong in all our movements. Our entire body benefits and becomes sturdy, durable and protected so it will function optimally throughout the day.
Most people are super-enthusiastic when they come to my classes and hear what seems like poetry and expresses the Nonviolent Communication consciousness. They hear the compassion, the curiosity, the clarity and the strength that can be communicated ~ even in significantly difficult situations.
What are people really saying to you? You can use these barometers to help you understand what is important to the person you are speaking with --and also for yourself, when you might be confused.
How did you contribute to the situation you are unhappy about?
In my opinion it is one of the most empowering questions we can ask of ourselves. When we are in a situation that we aren’t so happy about, depending what it is, then I encourage you to consider this first.
I spent this past week with my long time partner Steve. Both SuperGeeks for Nonviolent Communication we tend to talk about and philosophize about how to be, do and teach NVC a great deal of the time when we are together. A cool thing happened this visit.
This election season seems to have been particularly trying. In ways that I do not remember. Of course, it also seems that my memory is not what it used to be. Why am I at the computer again?
Oh yes, this election has had and continues to have so much energy, it is pulling people, squeezing out the hard, built up apathy and inertia. A deluge of thoughts and feelings are being thrown around flooding the thoughtfields. I am experiencing it like some serious weather. A hurricane or a tornado of sorts.
When I hear the word vulnerable, certain images come to my mind: A dog or cat, or any animal laying down on its back during a fight. Someone with his or her back to a wall with nowhere to go. Or someone walking down a cobblestone street, in the dark, slightly damp with scary music in the background.
Trust. Commitment. These are important elements in a relationship. I’m sure you will agree. But how does it look in a healthy relationship? That we may not agree on. Please read on.
To the disappointment of my trainer, I often read magazines while on the elliptical machine at the gym. A favorite is Real Simple Magazine. I like the pictures, quotes, suggestions and some articles, though I often find myself disagreeing with the advice given in the Life Lessons section. Here’s an example:
If you are on Facebook, you probably see many of the same quotes I do. They are meant to inspire us or make us laugh or cause us to see something in a different light. I’ve read this one a few times as it’s made the rounds, and each time I’ve felt a thud in my stomach.
My intuition tells me that this quote is more likely to keep people stuck than set them free. So I’d like to tease out what troubles me about it.
We all go through stages of emotional experience. In Nonviolent Communication we identify three primary stages of emotional maturity, the last of which is emotional liberation