Joining the Call

File:Giraffe at the front door, Giraffe Manor, Nairobi, Kenya.jpg
A giraffe at Giraffe Manor, Nairobi, Kenya

by Push the button


(Sangha formerly known as “street giraffe”

Street Giraffes is a free monthly NVC telepractice group that gathers on Sunday at 7 pm/ET.

Re:  Our tele-practice group’s meeting time/contact-information

    • For newcomers, to possibly join our telepractice group — which gathers periodically on Sunday evenings (schedule-permitting, at least monthly and most often on the second Sunday) @ 7 pm/ET, 4 pm/PT for about an hour and a half — please contact us here.  (If you could offer a bit as to your background, as an NVC practitioner, that would be greatly appreciated.  Thank you very much.)
  • For veterans, you may access our [password protected] conference call line’s meeting wall here. There you can either join by phone (dial-in # & pin) or internet.  (All relevant contact information — including technical assistance to access via VoIP, etc. — gets conveyed during initial email.)

“We don’t rise to the level of our expectations, we fall to the level of our training.” Archilochos 

For the foreseeable future, we’ll be working with skill-building exercises from Oren Jay Sofer’s book, Say What You Mean: A Mindful Approach to Nonviolent Communication.

Here’s a sample:


When to Speak and When to Listen – Tricycle: The Buddhist Review

By Oren Jay Sofer

Practice: Choice Points

Excerpt: “To practice, choose someone with whom you feel relatively comfortable. This familiarity makes it easier to learn the tool. During a conversation, notice when you choose to speak. If you find yourself talking without having consciously chosen to do so, try stopping and leaving space for the other person to continue. Notice what it’s like to actively choose to say something rather than doing so automatically. Pay particular attention to any urgency or reluctance to speak or any sensations of internal pressure. Use that pressure as a signal to make a more conscious choice.”

More on choice-points here 

 Additional posts via Oren Jay Sofer here.

Every time I mess up is a chance to practice.”
~ Marshall Rosenberg


To clarify, our sangha is less of an NVC (&/or “NVCPE“) traditional empathy circle and more of a skill-building laboratory, hopefully towards increasing fluency with integrating Nonviolent Communication conversationally — however incremental/gradual it may be — both practically and in principle.

“The key to fostering connection in the face of a ‘no’ is always ‘yes’ to something else and, as such, it is the beginning, not the end of a conversation. Hear the ‘Yes’ behind the ‘No’.” ~ Marshall Rosenberg

As with the Archiliochos quote, as to “falling to the level of our training,” I have a hypothesis, born from experience, that despite our best intentions, it does not necessarily translate that knowing of a skill will enable us to have more skill in a heated moment (of any given exchange in question, where one might prefer to bring NVC to bear, but somehow neglect to).

So we gather with the aspiration, among other things, to build a dialogic muscle for everyday encounters. 

A new monetary system: The NVC Pain Exchange (NVCPE) 

by Jeff Brown

“Over my twelve years of learning, practicing and sharing Nonviolent Communication (NVC), I have noticed some common tendencies in NVC communities. With some degree of trepidation (which I will explain in a moment), I suggest that one of these tendencies is what I playfully refer to as the, “NVC Pain Exchange (NVCPE).”

This is a playful variation of the ‘New York Stock Exchange (NYSE),’ a famous entity for trading and valuing stocks, bonds and other financial products.

The NVC Pain Exchange enables and perpetuates groups of people to get together and recycle and exchange pain with each other, all in the name of compassion…”

(continues here)

If you’d prefer more of an empathy buddy, for one-on-one practice, here’s another resource:

Additional questions?
Please don’t hesitate to contact


It’s not at all necessary to familiarize yourself with the content of each monthly post, prior to attending the call, however if you’d like to peruse the monthly inquiries you can most easily find a cache (of these ‘inquiring giraffe minds’ type prompts) here:

Read the writer/writing that first introduced me to NVC:

Say it Right – Tricycle by Katy Butler


Street Giraffe State o’ Mind – NVC Consciousness Cache

(a collection of articles that have informed my own NVC practice)

Other NVC Learning Venues


If you’re new to NVC:

Say What You Mean: A Mindful Approach to Nonviolent Communication

by Oren Jay Sofer

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is saywhatyoumean.jpg

Oren Jay Sofer’s YouTube Channel

A Mindful Approach to Nonviolent Communication with Oren Jay Sofer

Oren Jay Sofer: How to Use Mindful Communication

NVC Beginners videos

4-step practice to Developing Truth Force, or Satyagrha


(Courtesy of NVC Academy)

A sangha is a community of friends practicing the dharma together in order to bring about and to maintain awareness. The essence of a sangha is awareness, understanding, acceptance, harmony and love… (continues)

Thich Nhat Hanh

Vanity Fair:  [Referencing Microsoft’s CEO, Satya Nadella] “…He has had his executive team read Nonviolent Communication. (The title speaks for itself.)”


Center for Nonviolent Communication:

Learn NVC via Trainings & Practice Groups

See also:  International Intensive Trainings.

More irreverent NVC cartoons:


FULL – Nonviolent Communication Workshop – Marshall Rosenberg

Free depiction of how to use the “Matrix” (a tool used on our call):

Listen to an audio tour of Self Assessment Matrix – NVC Academy


“Whether I praise or criticize someone’s action, I imply that I am their judge, that I’m engaged in rating them or what they have done.” 

~ Marshall Rosenberg

How to utilize the “iGiraffe” as a heuristic tool:


Nonviolent Communication at the NVC Academy


NVC “Reality TV” &

NVC Dialogue Lab

(Part 1) (Part 2) (Part 3) (Part 4) (Part 5)

NVC Dialogue Lab — NVC Marketplace

(Library requires a subscription; Marketplace a fee)


“To be a human being is to regularly be in conflict with oneself and others.” ~ Ike Lasater

Dust Pan and Brush

‘An NVC practice as dustpan & brush…’

– Kit Miller 

“The Intention to Connect” Model of NVC (YouTube)

Street Giraffes is a free tele-practice group that gathers on the first Sunday of each month for “dialogue lab” experimentation w/ iGiraffe
(towards building street [giraffe] cred) — in the hopes that by cultivating presence we might enhance our conversational versatility.

For those who are ‘street giraffe(s) veterans’ (i.e. have already participated in our Satsang-esque circle), please click on our [password protected] Meeting Wall page here and then enter the correct ‘open-sesame’/password [to gain direct access to the conference call’s ‘wall’ to join the call, whether by 1) VoIP or 2) dial-in # & pin].


The Practice of Sangha – Lion’s Roar

A sangha is a community of friends practicing the dharma together in order to bring about and to maintain awareness. The essence of a sangha is awareness, understanding, acceptance, harmony and love. When you do not see these in a community, it is not a true sangha, and you should have the courage to say so. But when you find these elements are present in a community, you know that you have the happiness and fortune of being in a real sangha.

In Matthew 5:13 in the New Testament of the Christian Bible, we find this statement: “Ye are the salt of the earth; but if the salt hath lost its savor, wherewith shall it be salted? It is thenceforth good for nothing but to be cast out and to be trodden underfoot of men.” In this passage, Jesus describes his followers as salt. Food needs salt in order to be tasty. Life needs understanding, compassion and harmony in order to be livable…


Street Giraffes’ Tele-practice posts (minimalist):

 & tweets:  @streetgiraffes


Pamela’s posts (not so minimalist):


& tweets:  @StreetGiraffe

Feedback welcome via

The street railway review (via Wikimedia Commons)