June 27, 2012 § Leave a Comment
AKA How to Name Your Needs in a Way that is Loving, Respectful, and Empathetic
In our own humanness, we have a tendency to express ourselves on a day to day basis that is violent, combative, and pushes others away.
There are so many ways to communicate in this life that it’s sometimes difficult to know what the best way is, if any. After being married to Mr. Trever O’Brien for over four years, I know that communication is extremely important and something we often try to work on. It’s definitely been the key to our “success.”
Looking back at my own personal mapping–that is, all of my life during childhood–I’ve been watching adults model communication styles that are power, manipulation, struggle, ego, control, and blame among others.
All and all, these communication styles fall under Violence.
They hurt the mind, body, soul, and spirit. That hurt causes an endless amount of issues as we grow up. Yep. We all have issues. That doesn’t mean we can’t heal those hurts by meeting our current needs.
That’s the glorious thing: Our needs can be communicated through Nonviolent Communication (NVC) in a way that is beneficial to meeting those needs.
We miss the mark with each other and step into violent communication when we don’t name our specific need. Without that specific goal in mind, without it being out on the table, we are destroying our relationships and connection with one another rather than building them up.
Let’s put it this way: We have to know somewhere deep down inside that using aggression by flipping someone off while driving will never get our needs met or cause us to feel any happier. And in the end, that’s the hope that each one of us desires.
To get our needs met.
We need to get back to the root of simply knowing the real need of our hearts and naming it. It’s as simple as that. Forget the “I feel” statements. You really just need the trash taken out. I need the trash taken out, would you mind ________________ . (Watching the kids while I do it, taking it out for me before you have a shower, helping me take it down because I have two bags now.)
Where do you start?
• Work through any underlying mind clutter.
• Get to the root of the anger and/or depression.
• Be clear about your own needs before expressing them in a violent manner.
• Make sure you’re regulated (here’s some great tips on self-regulating)
Now you’re ready to define and name your need. As simple as this task may seem, it makes a world of difference in your every day life. It’s a practice of mindfulness, of walking in light. Name that need. You’ll be the better person for it.