Nonviolent communication

by Anna Finlayson and Daren DeWitt

NVC summary – ten things we can do

This page summarises key elements of the nonviolent communication process by listing ten things you can do to contribute to internal, interpersonal, and organisational peace.

  1. Spend some time each day quietly reflecting on how you would like to relate to yourself and others.
  2. Remember that all human beings have the same needs.
  3. Check your intention to see if you are as interested in others getting their needs met as your own.
  4. When asking someone to do something, check first to see if you are making a request or a demand.
  5. Instead of saying what you DON’T want someone to do, say what you DO want the person to do.
  6. Instead of saying what you want someone to BE, say what action you’d like the person to take that you hope will help the person be that way.
  7. Before agreeing or disagreeing with anyone’s opinions, try to tune in to what the person is feeling and needing.
  8. Instead of saying ‘No’, say what need of yours prevents you from saying ‘Yes’.
  9. If you are feeling upset, think about what need of yours is not being met, and what you could do to meet it, instead of thinking about what’s wrong with others or with you.
  10. Instead of praising someone who did something you like, express your gratitude by telling the person what need of yours that action met.

The Centre for Nonviolent Communication (CNVC) would like there to be a critical mass of people using nonviolent communication language so all people will get their needs met and resolve their conflicts peacefully.

© 2001, revised 2004 Gary Baran & CNVC.