What is Non Violent Communication?

Certified NVC trainer and friend Shantigarbha sends this through, adapted from the Center for Non Violent Communication website. I’ve found NVC to be both useful and beautiful in my own life. There’s a group starting in Brighton soon, contact me for details.

Nonviolent Communication (NVC) helps connect us with what is alive in ourselves and in others moment-to-moment, with what we or others could do to make life more wonderful, and with an awareness of what gets in the way of natural giving and receiving.

NVC language strengthens our ability to inspire compassion from others and respond compassionately to others and ourselves. NVC guides us to reframe how we express ourselves, how we hear others and resolve conflicts by focusing our consciousness on what we are observing, feeling, needing, and requesting. Nonviolent Communication language awakens empathy and honesty, and is sometimes described as ‘the language of the heart.’

As a child growing up in a turbulent Detroit neighbourhood, Marshall Rosenberg knew he wanted to find a way of speaking that would decrease the occurrence of physical and verbal violence. He asked himself what motivated people toward violence and why some people, even in trying circumstances, were moved to compassion instead.

In the early 1960s he left his practice as a clinical psychologist and literally went on the road, teaching people what he had learned. He wanted to ‘give away’ the communication skills that he had been teaching to his clients as a therapist.

In his efforts to apply these skills to the needs of people in everyday life, Dr. Rosenberg found people all over the US who wanted to learn Nonviolent Communication and he offered it to a broad base of people in their communities. To meet this need and to more effectively spread the skills of NVC, he founded the Centre for Nonviolent Communication in 1984.

CNVC now has regional teams of trainers and organizers in Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Western Europe, Russia, Indonesia, Malaysia, India, Sri Lanka, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Rwanda, Burundi, and several countries in Latin America. There are more than 200 CNVC-certified trainers throughout the world and we estimate that, in each of the past two years, over 250,000 people have received training in NVC in a multitude of countries, cultures, and languages.

Further reading: Nonviolent Communication: A Language of Life by Marshall B. Rosenberg, Ph.D. Published by PuddleDancer Press, available in the UK from http://www.gnb.org.uk/ and http://www.amazon.co.uk/

For information and online learning: http://www.cnvc.org/ . For trainers in the UK: http://www.nvc-uk.info/