The expression "nonviolent communication" or "compassionate communication" can be seen in various articles and on social media more often. This is how people describe the rules for new members and try to avoid skirmishes and arguments.
The modern concept of nonviolent communication (NVC) was developed back in the 1960s by the American psychologist Marshall Rosenberg. The NVC system, which the psychologist described in detail in the book "A Language of Life," offers to solve this problem in two directions at once. The first is to watch how you speak and convey your thoughts, the second is to see the real intention behind the words of the interlocutor.
Roughly speaking, not to pick on words, but to share the pain behind them: if you realize that the interlocutor has the same needs as you, it is much easier to build a peaceful dialogue.
In this article, we have collected several tips from the arsenal of nonviolent communication that will be useful to everyone.
1. Use “I” sentences
The main commandment of NVC is: it is always better to talk about your emotions and needs than to try to think out for others. Compare the phrases “You completely forgot about me” and “I'm a little anxious because I enjoy spending time with you, and I want to do it more often.” Which one will be perceived as an aggressive attack?
Using the “I” sentences correctly, we do not shift the responsibility for our emotions onto other people. This way, the person to whom we are addressing will not feel attacked and will certainly listen to you.
2. Do not start a phrase with the word “no” or “but”
Sometimes we answer something like “No, well, I heard that…” or “No, but my favorite story is…” without the slightest intention to object. Starting a phrase with the objection is a bad habit: one interlocutor may ignore it, while another hears a devaluation of their words. The impression of a conversation is formed based on these little things. If you start your reply with "not," you leave an unpleasant impression, even though nothing bad seems to have happened.
3. Try to hear feelings, not words
Not everyone treats communication seriously and carefully: most people have never heard of NVC. Therefore, you need to be prepared that the interlocutor will say wrong, offensive, or strange things. However, behind them, you can see the needs that are understandable and close to all of us. When parents grumble, "You haven't called us for a week, shame on you!," they are actually trying to say that they want to talk to you and spend more time with you.
The nonviolent communication master will be able to ignore the manipulation attempt and not be rude in response, but talk about the needs of the interlocutor.