Category Archives: Nonviolent Communication

Conversations about Nonviolent Communication

Building a Healthier Democracy

I’m going to share a few links here that give me hope.  With the Federal Government of the United States in a shutdown state, many people are feeling tension and the blame and name calling is at an all time high.  I have yet to come across a situation where name calling led to anything good.  So here, I offer some words by some very conscious people.

I came across most of this on facebook.  A place that has allowed me to practice tolerance for differing views.

A question was put forth to Parker Palmer – founder and senior partner at The Center for Courage and Renewal and author of  Healing The Heart of Democracy.  The question was this:  “Please let us know when you figure out how to talk to the teaparty.”

He welcomed the query and offered this: “Here’s a site where you can watch my friend Joan Blades, co-founder of, in dialogue with Mark Meckler, co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots I’m involved in Joan’s “Living Room Conversations” project (click on the “People” tab on their home page to see my statement about it), and I highly recommend it as one way of responding to your implied question. Thanks again. But please, don’t wait for me to figure it out! We’re all in this together, and all of us working together are smarter than any one of us working alone—certainly smarter than I am!”

Although I only just came across the Living Room Conversations project, and I’m not in any way involved in it, and don’t yet know the participants, I wanted to write about it here to raise awareness.  I personally believe in this process and I have seen how deep conversations can bring about peace, healing, and a connectedness beyond what any of us dreamed possible before sitting down in that field that is beyond right doing and wrong doing.  I practice this with my neighbors, with my husband, with my children and with my co-workers.  I know it works.  It gives me hope.

I follow Parker Palmer on Facebook.  You can check out his page here.

Protesting SOPA and PIPA

I just logged into facebook and my friends are contemplating staying completely offline tomorrow (Jan 18, 2012) to protest the SOPA and PIPA “laws”. Here
are the facts from PC World.

I heard on the news today that Wikipedia is blacking out their English site worldwide.

I wanted to double check for myself and yes, here’s a screenshot of my browser taken a few minutes ago.

I admire them!

I’m wondering what action I can take… I could black out my personal sites but what about the sites where I work? Unlikely that I can get consensus on this by midnight.

For now, I will continue to dream of a thriving “gift economy” (you know, where you download a song for free and if you love it and want to support the artist, you make a donation). The artists gift you their art with love, and if you love the art (say it’s music), you gift the artist in return… No strings attached.

Yes, I know there are some that will abuse this. But passing closed-minded laws out of fear is not the answer. No matter what laws exist, those who are stealing will continue to find ways to steal.

Oh, and my dream is not only for artists… Can you imagine a world where business is conducted with the principles of a “gift economy”? Ah! I can dream.

All decisions (law making is decision making) are made in one of two ways: Out of love, or out of fear. I want to speak up for Love!


Feeling Connected

Some of my favorite emails are one or two lines long. Here’s one that a friend of mine sent me recently to get the conversation going.

The subject line just said: “Hey” and the body of the email had the following <a href=”” target=”_blank”>Stanley Kunitz quote:

“The Universe is a continuous web. Touch it at any point and the whole web quivers.”

I saved the email.

The imagery that this brings up for me underscores our connectedness and the fragility and sensitivity of our connections.

Recently, during a women’s circle, I had a chance to visit with my friend.

She shared with us that since coming upon this quote, she is more cognizant of how connected we are and how one word uttered here may impact someone who is miles away – in her case, her son. And, she said that realizing how her words can impact her son has helped her be impeccable with her speech when dealing with difficult situations that arise.

Who do you care enough about impacting that you would be willing to choose kindness (and maybe silence) over being right?

NVC – The first couple of days

It’s always happened to me when I put my intention on doing something that the Universe provides…


The last few days have been a constant test, and it feels at times that I’m failing miserably.  The upside is that I’m learning a lot.  I’m doing the course with a friend/colleague and it’s been great having someone to discuss the exercises with.  It has also been a comfort to see that we are both being tested in similar ways.  The best moment today came when Marshall tells an anecdote of a time when he was triggered to react… and how he used it as an opportunity for learning. 


My son after his KunFu lesson asked me tonight: “mom, do you know the difference between a reaction and a response?” 


“I think I know but I’m interested in hearing what you think it is.” I replied.


“The difference is that one involves thinking and the other doesn’t”.


Interesting that I can manage to apply NVC successfully when I take the time to respond rather than react.


There is so much information on NVC that is already available online that instead of typing a synopsis here, I’m going to provide a few links.  Enjoy.

For information on Marshall Rosenberg, visit The Center for Nonviolent Communication website at

I bought the training course from Sounds True, one of my favorite sources for quality publications.  Here’s a link to the actual page for the NVC home training course from Sounds True.  If you sign up for their newsletter, they have specials for discounts and free shipping.