News & Events

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Monday
Jun032013

A "Taste of" Compassionate Communication - Mini Course

Join me for a $10  mini-course on the Non-Violent Communication (NVC) Solution. I am facilitating this session in particular for people who have been interested in knowing a little more about the NVC process and who have been “on the fence” to sign up for a Weekend Intensive.

When: June 12, 2013, 7:00 – 8:00 pm
Where: Unity Eastside – 8551 Buck Lake Drive
Sign Up:
http://www.eventbrite.com/event/6945719835

Non-Violent Communication helps you:

  • Free yourself from the effects of past experiences and cultural conditioning
  • Break patterns of thinking that lead to arguments, anger and depression
  • Resolve conflicts peacefully, whether personal or public, domestic or international
  • Create social structures that support everyone’s needs being met
  • Develop relationships based upon mutual respect, compassion, and cooperation

If you have heard about NVC and want a first-hand experience with the process, this is a perfect opportunity to learn more. Be a part of this movement and take advantage of a low-cost way to become involved in NVC.

Wednesday
May152013

How can Yellow Roses Make the difference between Full and Empty?

“All Conflict is a Tragic Expression of an Unmet Need.” That’s one of my favorite quotes from Marshall Rosenberg the founder of NVC … and we learn in the NVC process that so much of our conflict occurs because we become attached to having our needs met in one way, by one particular person or one particular thing – when in reality there is a whole world of ways to meet our needs.  A student/friend of mine recently shared a moving experience that really brings this point home.

This same student is going through the early stages of divorce and has been quite sad regarding the need for love in her life.  After all, when going through a breakup, it’s very easy to get caught up in thoughts such as “What’s wrong with me?   I will never have true love in my life.  Love doesn’t really exist, etc.” 

One morning, this woman, a teacher, walked into her classroom and found a huge empty, green vase sitting on her desk.  Her co-worker came in and said, gently, “I’m guessing that your life may seem a lot like this vase at the moment – just really big, overwhelming, green, and empty.  But you never know what God's plan is for your life… just like that vase.  You never know what might come along and fill up the emptiness.”  Then the co-worker left.

Next thing she knew, a former student came to my teacher friend’s door with a yellow rose in hand.  He said it was for her and put it in the vase.  Then 20 minutes later, another student showed up with a yellow rose, and so on for the next few hours, every 15 or 20 minutes another past student would come by with a yellow flower in hand and present it to this woman.  Before too long, the empty vase was completely filled up with beautiful yellow roses. 

My friend’s heart was chock-full with love, gratitude, and joy.  She related to me that it was such a powerful experience regarding the NVC idea that our needs can be met in more than one way.  I think it was an empowering moment for her to know that she can create love in her life (and really meet any of her own needs) even while going through a painful divorce.  I believe when people understand this concept it provides a lot more freedom and flow in one’s life – and allows more ease in most of our relationships because we no longer have to cling to a specific person to meet all of our needs.  Hallelujah for that epiphany!

Where can you look to meet your own needs?  Who loves you and wants to demonstrate that loving support you need but have not yet asked for?  How can you nurture your self and your spirit?  What practice can you begin (meditation, yoga, bubble baths, inspirational readings, a class, a hobby?) that will help fill you up?

I wish you more peace and connection in your life, and that's why I do what I do.  Join me - us - won't you?

 

Friday
Apr262013

Peace Begins at Home!

I have been blessed, recently, to work with a couple going through the beginning stages of divorce.  Doesn’t that sound weird – blessed to do this?  However, it is the greatest gift to help people communicate with one another especially when they are in a painful and angry state.  It’s like literally seeing peace being created right before my eyes.  In this case, as I sat with this couple in their home – there was a little, hand-made sign taped to the staircase located right where we were talking.  The sign stated “Peace Begins at Home.”  It’s something most of us have heard, but how many have had the privilege of actually seeing it come to life right before our eyes? Especially in a divorce situation?  I, myself, came from a divorced situation and it was UGLY!  My parents didn’t have the skills to know how to connect and there was no such thing as Non Violent Communication (NVC) to help them learn and apply such skills. 

When I mediate between two “warring factions” – my job is to help us all connect, not necessarily to agree but to connect.  Yet, what does that actually mean – to connect? Recently, I revisited a definition of connection by Brene’ Brown that I think is perfect.  “Connection is the energy that exists between people when they feel seen, heard, and valued, when they can give and receive without judgment.”  Imagine being in a conflict or going through divorce and having interactions where you feel seen, heard, and valued, where you are safe from judgment and able to hear the other person with an open heart.  This is no BS; the work that I do is all about making that happen and giving people the skills to do so on an ongoing basis. I create connection by helping individuals stick to the facts and talk about what they are feeling and needing and getting them to hear each other at a heart level.  It is actually possible – even in the most painful situations.

This weekend, on a heaven-on-earth spring day, I drove away from this couple’s house after working with them, blaring my radio in celebration.  I was celebrating their connection and the possibility it holds for them and their children, and I was celebrating the possibility it has for all of us to create more peace on earth, even in some of the toughest situations.  One last note… peace is an ongoing journey.  This coming into connection is a dance, an ebb and flow – it takes work and commitment, but it’s a choice that each of us has in every second, in every interaction, in every circumstance.  Are you ready to do the work of peace?