Do you feel that your emotional nature gets you into trouble?
Do you wish you had more control over your emotions?
Do you get angry at others then blame yourself for being angry?
If you are dealing with any of these problems, it is helpful to learn how emotions are connected to real human needs that are met or unmet. When our needs are satisfied, we feel calm, happy and content. When our needs are not satisfied we feel anger, fear and many other forms of emotional pain.
Our cultural tendency is to blame others for how we feel, then suffer our victimization in silence until we become ill or addicted or explode in anger. Nonviolent Communication empowers us to get to know our own emotions and the beautiful human needs that give rise to them. Any one experience calls forth many feelings and needs. Once we understand our feelings and our needs, we see that there are many ways to meet our needs, and we can take steps to do just that.
We usually have not been raised to pay attention to our beautiful human needs. In fact, we have been told that it is virtuous to pay more attention to the needs of others than to our own. This is OK until we end up feeling angry and dissatisfied, then blame ourselves for being emotionally out of control.
So many conflicts can be avoided or resolved if we pay attention to our own feelings and needs instead of blaming others for how we feel. Over the last 11 years I’ve developed a course called Generating a Culture of Peace, combining Marshall Rosenberg’s theory of Nonviolent Communication (NVC) and Focusing. I call it Generating a Culture of Peace.
I am not a certified NVC trainer, but I have been a certified Focusing trainer since 2000 and am a certifying coordinator with The International Focusing Institute. I believe that Focusing and NVC mutually enhance each other and that they belong together. To find out more about NVC, visit cnvc.org.
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