Communication is one the most important ingredients and foundation of any great relationship; this includes significant others, spouses, children, parents, siblings and even co-workers. When there is good communication present, the interaction feels fulfilling, safe and reciprocal, even if the subject matter is challenging. As we all know, it doesn’t usually go this way. There are many reasons (i.e. conditioned responses) that lead to the demise of good communication and I will be addressing a few of them. As a child, when a parent or teacher said they wanted to talk you, you may have felt chastised, embarrassed, humiliated or accused. This is a conditioned response. Of course this is rarely the intention on the part of the adult , but many adults were never taught a clean way of communication.
To delve a little deeper, let’s incorporate the work of Dr. Marshall Rosenberg and NVC (non-violent communication).
Dr. Rosenberg has so brilliantly explained the reason for breakdowns in communication, and he believes it all comes down to the fact that while we all have feelings, needs and preferences (which is not a problem in itself), it’s what we do with those feelings, needs and preferences that can get us into trouble.
As young children, we knew how to ask for what we wanted or needed even when it was preverbal, but something happened along the way. Maybe we were shamed or made guilty or wrong for our needs. Based on our personality type, our little egos used its innate strategies to survive that pain. Some of us acted out more assertively, some became more compliant, and some withdrew when it came to those needs being met. As we get older, all of these unresolved issues get projected onto others in our lives, especially our significant others aka our “transitional relationships”.
The above statement is bold, but true. If you are reading this page, there is a chance that you are having some conflict in which you wish for a resolution, or are resigned to the fact that there may not be resolution. Or, perhaps you are struggling to be understood, and to increase the empathy of someone who is important to you.
Don’t give up or feel like you are a failure. You are not alone!
I can speak volumes on this topic and no matter what circumstances you are dealing with, there is always a way to resolve a conflict. Whether it be:
All you need is a desire and openness for change, and the willingness to consistently practice and use the tools that I give you to transform this area of your life. Like with all the work that my clients do with me, this is your journey and there is no magic pill. On the other hand, if you do your work, your gains will be life altering and the effects everlasting.
This is a frequently asked question that comes up in all areas of my practice and here is my answer:
It all begins with you!
We have no control of others, and even if we have imaginary or temporary control, it only eventually leads to anger and resentment, which is antithetical to NVC (non- violent communication). So, even if the outcome is that you have the ability and freedom to speak and honor your own truth and stop suffering over things that you have no control over, isn’t that worth the price of admission? When my clients are open to their own blind spots and start taking responsibility in the ways that they have been communicating, the dynamic often changes on its own or the other party is so grateful that they eventually become interested.
If you are interested in speaking with me about conflict resolution or if you have any further questions, take advantage and schedule a free 15-minute consultation to see for yourself if this is a fit for you.