|What is NVC?|
'NVC' stands for Nonviolent Communication. Dr Marshall Rosenberg coined the term as Ghandi used it — referring to our natural state when all violence has subsided from our heart. As Marshall says, "While we may not believe we are ‘violent’, our words and thoughts often lead to pain in others and ourselves.”
NVC is learnable process that facilitates the flow of communication necessary to exchange information and resolve differences constructively and compassionately. It is based on identifying universally shared standards and needs.
NVC is a process that enables us to:
NVC teaches people how to avoid language that creates resentment or lowers self-esteem. It emphasises compassion as the motivation for actions, rather than fear, guilt, blame, or shame. It also emphasises personal responsibility for our choices. Nonviolent Communication can be used effectively even without the other person’s or group’s knowledge of the process.
NVC guides us to reframe how we express ourselves and hear others by focusing our consciousness on what we are observing, feeling, needing, and requesting. We are trained to make careful observations free of evaluation, and to specify behaviours and conditions that are affecting us. We learn to hear our own deeper needs and those of others, and to identify and clearly articulate what we are wanting in a given moment. When we focus on clarifying what is being observed, felt, and needed, rather than on diagnosing and judging, we discover the depth of our own compassion.
Through its emphasis on deep listening — to ourselves as well as others — NVC fosters respect, attentiveness and empathy, and engenders a mutual desire to connect. The form is powerfully transformative.
While it is taught through the use of a concrete model, and is referred to as 'a process of communication' or a 'language of compassion', Nonviolent Communication is more than a process or a language. As our cultural conditioning often leads our attention in directions unlikely to get us what we want, NVC serves as an ongoing reminder to focus our attention on places that have the potential to yield what we are seeking — a flow between ourselves and others based on a mutual desire to connect.
NVC is a way of speaking that helps stop violence!