Sharing Unmet Needs from Abundance
Abundance is a word that gets thrown around a lot in New Age literature and talk. It can be used as a “spiritual bypass”. Instead acknowledging that it’s tough not having a reliable income, you hear yourself saying, “Yea, but I have to come from abundance.”
On the other hand, coming from abundance can also be a concrete practice that helps create connection in communication.
Let’s look at one example from a gem reader. I’ll call him Rob.
Rob says he has difficulty sharing his feelings and needs. He longs to be seen and celebrated. He wants his partner Chris to ask him more questions about his experiences each day and to initiate conversations about their relationship as often as he does.
Coming from the hurt of his unmet need around being seen, Rob communicates to Chris:
“I need as much attention as I give you. I feel left out and unattended and uncared for. I need you to take as much interest in my life as I take in yours. I feel angry like I am not important to you.”
Rob has attempted to communicate his feelings and needs. Tragically he has likely inspired guilt, defensiveness, and disconnect. He has told Chris what he thinks Chris is doing or not doing rather than actually sharing his feelings and needs. Rob may have used syntactically perfect NVC: “When I notice that at dinner last night we talked about your day for 30 minutes and my day for 10, I feel sad and disappointed because I long to be seen and cared for. Would you be willing to take more time to hear about my day tonight at dinner?” This will increase the chances of Rob being heard and still there is something missing and Rob’s heart is not fully expressed.
Sharing unmet needs from abundance, you ask yourself to slow down. Take a few minutes to experience the need that is alive for you. Allow your total attention to be in the experience of the need. Drop the other person and the circumstance for the moment. For example, to do this Rob can ask himself, “What is the experience of being seen fully? What does it feel like in my heart and body?” Rob then takes a few minutes and to experience the feelings and sensations that come up.
Creating this level of connection with your own needs, the other person gets to experience the aliveness of your need rather than what’s lacking. From this place of connection to the aliveness of your needs a natural giving from the heart arises.
Having connected more fully to his needs, Rob might express himself like this:
“I notice this sadness because I long to be seen for all of who I am and at the same I notice an excitement when I think about sharing more of who I am with you. I have so much that I want to share – what I’m excited about, what’s hard for me, what I am learning. Chris can you tell me what you are hearing me say?”
Shifting to sharing your needs from a place of abundance means allowing yourself to experience the possibility of that need being met. In doing so, you drop the idea that the other person should be doing something differently. Your needs are you own, to honor and enjoy, and to meet in a way that has you thriving with aliveness.