Feelings that blame?
"I feel abandoned!" a woman says to her partner. I watch her partner as he stiffens slightly and a wash of hurt comes over his face.
I had encouraged the woman to express her feelings. Her face and body expressed pain and frustration, but her words expressed an evaluation of her partner which was easy for him to hear as blame.
In Nonviolent Communication (NVC), we bring awareness to feelings and needs to create a quality of connection in which a natural giving of the heart arises.
I have heard folks say that they have tried expressing their feelings, but it didn't work. What I have often discovered in these cases is that feelings weren't actually expressed.
There is a long list of words in our language that pose as feelings, but are actually evaluations. Take a look at the list below. Do you see some words you have used recently?
Behind each of these words are precious feelings and needs.
Choose three of the words below that you have used recently. For each word name the feelings and needs that were alive in you with the expression of each.
For instance, in the example above, when the woman said she felt abandoned, you might guess she felt pain and frustration because she had needs for trust, integrity, and reliability.
|provoked||put down||rejected||ripped off|
|smothered||taken advantage of||threatened|
Click on my website to download a list of feelings and needs www.wiseheartpdx.org/resources.php