Miki Kashtan: “I’m curious to know how many people have irritated people in your life by how you speak with NVC? So, if I use NVC that is not fully integrated, then in a certain small way, I am imposing my practice on other people. So I want to take a moment of silence, as for me, this insight was of great depth for me, when I finally got it.
Than we find ourselves in a very difficult situation. We no longer want to use the old ways but we don’t have the new ways integrated. Be careful now, as you are at your most vulnerable.
One is to learn some techniques for making the language sound more natural.
Second is to have enough self-acceptance to let go of trying to use NVC with people, that are not NVC speakers, and just be spontaneous and let things happen. We all survived many years of living without NVC.
And the third thing is to try make an explicit agreement with the person. I want to give you a way of trying making the agreement. Something like, ‘I really don’t like what happens between us when I talk the way I used to talk. So I would like to talk differently, even though it sounds stilted. Because I have some hope that it will help us. Are you willing for me to try?’ And if the person says yes, than we have a practice group right there. It’s more vulnerable than using NVC on top of fear.
Usually when people try to use NVC in a context where it is not integrated, there is nervousness and fear and discomfort going on, but we don’t say it so then what we communicate nonverbally is disconnection both between the true level of our consciousness and our language and between the true feelings and needs that we have and what we say. For example, if I’m judging you as selfish and disrespectful, but I know I should speak NVC, there is a gap between my consciousness and my language. Then I say, ‘This is not meeting my need for respect.’ But I’m like this, because of that gap. And the other person picks up the discomfort much more than the words.
So if we can say, ‘There is a lot going on inside of me that I don’t know how to say usefully. And I’m nervous and uncomfortable and yet I still want to try to connect in a different way than the one that I don’t like which gets us into trouble.’ Who would say no to that? Why would anyone want the old argument. So when people say, ‘don’t NVC me’ what they are saying is be authentic. Authenticity comes before words…
The second piece is to let go of perfection and to be honest and authentic about the spontaneous truth that lives in me. Eventually I will know how to translate. For now, if I don’t have the agreement, it is better that I speak jackal that is authentic than that I speak NVC that is imposed on you without your agreement and without my authenticity. I much prefer that we speak authentic jackal than distorted NVC look-alike that isn’t real. I hope you take this deep to your heart for the benefit of all beings.” [italics, mine own]
Additional posts, by Miki, on expressing oneself w/ NVC:
For more on Naturalizing NVC, please see:
Naturalizing NVC Language Series
Intermediate Skill Level