Because we affect one another it can be hard to know where to take responsibility and where to leave it with the other person. This means we need self empathy, and presence for another's struggles without compulsion to "make them happy" or bring them healthy change. You can then attend to the needs and to your choice about if and how you want to contribute with compassion. Respect them as autonomously in charge of their unique process of change. With this, you honor your life and theirs. And where, what, and how you will invest your precious life energy.
Here's a brief anecdote showing how one woman was able transform a situation, where a man was about to assault or rape her. She responded in a creative way that lead them both to see each others' humanity -- navigating them both to safety. As part of her ingenuity he ended up spending the night in her house, in another room.
Even those who practice NVC can repeat old patterns of thinking, believing, feeling, and behaving. If they do, but still use ‘NVC language’ others may think the issue is NVC rather than the person’s capacity. This week, notice even a small instance where someone is against something you suggest. To build trust and connection, experiment with offering empathy or asking them to share what they think, feel, or need.
Our craving for love, acceptance, and approval can lead us to show only parts of ourselves and hide others. This lack of authenticity breeds disconnection and mistrust, leading to those very needs not being met. Once I accept myself, being authentic is easier. And then people in my life can love me for who I really am, warts and all.
Trainer Tip: Whether there is the potential of physical or emotional violence, listening deeply to the underlying needs of the people in conflict can be swift, direct, and healing. Look for opportunities to defuse conflicts by reflecting the feelings and needs of the other person.
Trainer Tip: List specific things that would signify love to you. Based on who the other person is and who you are, how could your need for love be met? Being specific is important. General statements, such as “I just want you to love me” or “I would like you to be more attentive and listen to me more” won’t work. (S)he may already think (s)he is attentive. What would being attentive look like to you? And how will he know if (s)he’s been attentive enough?