Tele-Practice Resources


(Provisional Outline)


Check-in [Naturalizing Fluency – ‘Essentializing/40 Words’]


Self-Connection Exercise/Opening Meditation [OFNR]


Dispatches from the Street w/ Principles & Intentions


[Universal] Need-to-Phrase


Dialogue/Role Play – Experiments in NVC Consciousness


Check-out w/ Connection Requests

“What is essential here is the presence of the spirit of dialogue, which is in short, the ability to hold many points of view in suspension, along with a primary interest in the creation of common meaning.” ~ David Bohm

Why Practice Street Giraffe?
One Tangible Inquiry…

Dialogue is a conversation … the outcome of which is unknown.”  — Martin Buber

Tele-Practice Outline


The WTR Spiral

Provisional  Outline of “Street Giraffe” Practice Call:

I.  Check-in – essentializing w/ naturalized expression of OFNR (“40 Words” or less)
II.  Self-Connection – OFNR* (the root of ‘stealth NVC/street giraffe’)
III. Street-Dispatches w/Matrix** + Fluency w/Feelings & [Living-EnergyNeeds
IV.  “Bricks & Mortar” – Fleshing out Universal Needs: Word-to-Phrase***
V.  “Blueprint” – Dialogue/Role Play w/iGiraffe (Experiments: NVC Consciousness)
VI.  Check-out – Flowers, Tears & Lightbulbs w/ Connection Requests

For more detailed information, please view either the Practice-Resources &/or Tabs III , IIIIVVVI

View more details here: Outline-of-Call

How does one get to Carnegie Hall?  Practice, practice, practice

I.  If you have people in your life who have expressed annoyance with your use of NVC, one way of starting the preparation for this class is to ask them for the most concrete examples they can remember of language that you say repeatedly and that sounds foreign to them. This could even be fun for you to do together if there is still trust left that your intention in using NVC is genuine.  If you don’t have such people in your life, it would take more imagination on your part. I would invite you to listen to yourself speak as if you are another person, and pick out those repeating phrases that you use.  Then, for each of the phrases that you identify, write down five alternative ways of conveying the core message your stock phrase is designed to communicate.

II. Between now and when we meet, notice times when people experience discomfort in relation to your use of NVC.  Record your words as closely as you remember them so we can explore them together.

1. Think of situation in which you want to use NVC with someone who doesn’t use NVC. a. Write down your expression in classical NVC. b. Imagine yourself as the other person, and notice if you have any reaction or discomfort with the expression you chose. What might be the source of the discomfort? c. Find any way that you can revise your original expression that might overcome this person’s discomfort.

(courtesy of the work of Miki Kashtan)
What is your intention for learning Street Giraffe?

What’s My Intention? A Simple Nonviolent Communication Exercise


(Exercises beneath may be explored on the tele-practice call)



I ~ Check-in

Dispatches from the Street: Essentializing

[w/ ’40 Words’ or less with OFNR]

Practice w/ essentializing [“40 Words” – approximately ’30 seconds’ or 3 sentences]  followed by Connection Requests (focuses on the quality of connection between people)

“Most conversations are simply monologues delivered in the presence of a witness.”
— Margaret Millar

A conversation is a dialogue, not a monologue. That’s why there are so few good conversations: due to scarcity, two intelligent talkers seldom meet.
Truman Capote



II ~  Self-Connection Exercise/Opening Meditation [OFNR]

Why meditate on Needs?

See:  Shifting to Needs Consciousness

A giraffe

Developing Interior Mindfulness of NVC Consiousness

Nonviolent Communication: A Selfconnection meditative exercise

View Manske videos on’s Yoga of Self-Connection

Learning Materials – ZENVC

The self is an oral society in which the present is constantly running a dialogue with the past and the future inside of one skin.
David Antin

BayNVC’s Facets of Self-Connection*

Selfempathy exercise NVC Nonviolent Communication – YouTube



III ~ Street Dispatches w/ Matrix + Fluency with Feelings & Needs

Pick a situation in which you are struggling to connect and all you can come up with is judgments, demands, etc.  a) Write down what you said or what you would say if you opened your mouth.  b) Pick one commitment* or one intention** or skill*** from the reference materials that feels relevant to the situation, and imagine applying it. Write down how your language might change if you aligned your heart with the intention or commitment you picked.

*Core [Consciousness Transformation] Commitments

**Key Assumptions and Intentions of NVC – BayNVC

***Radical Compassion – Pathways to Liberation MATRIX

Colloquial NVC — “How To” (Description of Exercises)

Developing a Living Values Vocabulary

Naturalizing NVCYouTube

Pick a situation in which you have tried to use NVC language and lacked flow despite your intention to connect.

a) Find language that feels completely flowing for you, regardless of use of NVC, and write it down. b) Review what you wrote and look for any hidden judgments, demands, interpretations, labels, etc., and translate those into fluid and rigorous language that’s consistent with your intention to connect, sounds natural, and doesn’t have any judgments in it.

Try to either express &/or empathize without using the preface/word “feeling” or “need

Basic Example:

Classical ~ Are you feeling ______ because you need _____?

(Are you feeling frustrated because you need respect?)

Colloquial ~ Are you _____ because you’d like  ______?

(Are you frustrated because you’d like some respect?)

[PDF] Feelings/Emotions – Partial ListBayNVC


More Advanced Example:

Improvisational OFNR

The emotional brain responds to an event more quickly than the thinking brain.
Daniel Goleman

Building the Street Giraffe Muscle



IV ~ [Universal] Need-to-Phrase

Speak clearly, if you speak at all; carve every word before you let it fall.
— Oliver Wendell Holmes


1) Scenario/(Current Event); 2) Preferred Strategy; 3) [Universal] Need; 4) Phrase

[Group activity often utilizing current events]

BayNVC’s Engaging with the World (doc)]

I think what has happened, actually, is that September 11 has given a spur, a renewed urgency, to dialogue between the great faiths.
George Carey

“How To” ~ Steps: [Universal]-Need-to-Phrase

Beneath via the work of Miki Kashtan:

To focus on another challenging line to walk in learning to have fluidity in our communication. It’s the line that separates strategies from needs while still maintaining relevant contextual specificity in the choice of words for needs.  (Have a copy of the needs list available as you do this activity so as to enjoy variety.)

Collect a variety of (current event related) situations in which you are very clear what the preferred strategy is for you or for someone else. For each of them, do the following steps: 1) Write down the strategy minus any evaluation or demand, just exactly what you or the other person wants; 2) Find the need that seems the most relevant to you for this strategy. If this is your preferred strategy, you can usually fully identify the need. If it’s another person’s preferred strategy, just write down your best guess.  This will almost always be just one word from the needs list: autonomy, respect, competence, love, meaning, etc.  3) Find a full phrase consisting of a few words that is specific enough to fit the context and yet is still clearly a need and not a strategy. For example, harmony with family members vs. harmony – and not “to get along with my family.”


Utilizing “Universal-Need-Full-Phrase” in Role Plays:

1. Engage in more role plays — here’s the basic outline:

a. In a particular scenario, think of your preferred strategy, and translate it into a full-phrase need.

i. Find the underlying need that is expressed through this strategy. ii. Fit this need into a full-phrase need that is specific to the context and the truth of the moment without including specific people, location, action, time, or object [PLATO].
iii. If you find that elements of strategy are still present, look for a deeper need that is informing the need you previously identified. For example, sometimes clarity can be a strategy for safety. Once you find a deeper need, it will usually be easier to find a strategy free contextualized full-phrase need.

b. Communicate as fluidly as possible to your dialogic/role-play partner as that other person. Remember to include a request.

c. Have your dialogic/role-play partner respond as the other person, without use of NVC.

d. Apply the same process to what the other person says to respond empathically:
i. Find a full-phrase need underlying whatever they said, be it strategy, judgment, demand, or anything else.
ii. Put that need in an empathic guess without the words feeling or need.

e. Continue in this slow-motion kind of dialogue, choosing empathy or expression in each round.

2. Offer each other empathy for whatever you want that kind of attention, and every few moments pause the process and find the full-phrase need that would fit the context. Once you reach fluency, the goal is to focus on full-phrase need language most of the time.



V ~ Dialogue/Role Play – Experiments in NVC Consciousness

Two monologues do not make a dialogue.
–Jeff Daly

NVC Model (courtesy of

The 2 Parts and 4 Components of NVC

NVC Model

In true dialogue, both sides are willing to change.
Nhat Hanh

“To listen well is as powerful a means of communication and influence as to talk well”
— John Marshall’s Communication Flow Chart

August 2011: The Power of Role Play

Courtesy of ~ Words That Work … articles on Mediation (Ike Lasater/John Kinyon)

Authentic Dialogue (via Robert Gonzales)

See also:  Compassionately Embracing & Transformation Process

Transforming the Pain of Unmet Needs to the Beauty of the Needs

Learn more about Robert Gonzales

Compassion is being able to see and by “see‟ I mean through the heart as opposed to “see‟ in some sensory, intellectual way; to see through the heart the beauty and the tragedy, if you will, the love and the love that is appearing in a disguised form in all of those who come our way and in all of the experiences that emerge into our sphere. But it must also be recognized that compassion, compassionate self care is a way of coming to our current perception, our current fear, our current judgment and respecting that with the same integrity and with the same steadfastness as we respect that fear after it begins to translate itself into something warmer and deeper.
-Stephen R. Schwartz

“I choose to risk my significance,
to live so that which came to me as seed
goes to the next as blossom,
and that which came to me as blossom,
goes on as fruit.”
—Dawn Markova

Dialogue as a Way of Life by Miki Kashtan

1. Pick a situation in which you have tried to use NVC language and lacked flow despite your intention to connect.  a) Find language that feels completely flowing for you, regardless of use of NVC, and write it down.  b) Review what you wrote and look for any hidden judgments, demands, interpretations, labels, etc., and translate those into fluid and rigorous language that’s consistent with your intention to connect, sounds natural, and doesn’t have any judgments in it.

BayNVC’s Channel – YouTube

When people talk, listen completely. Most people never listen.
— Ernest Hemingway

Radical Compassion’s Three Layers of Empathy

Manske’s Pathways-to-Liberation-Self-Assessment-Matrix

Other ‘practice’ documents available via Manske’s website: Radical Compassion

“Deep listening is miraculous for both listener and speaker. When someone receives us with open-hearted, non-judging, intensely interested listening, our spirits expand.”
— Sue Patton Thoele

“The most important thing in communication is to hear what isn’t being said.”
Peter F. Drucker

Breath, Body, Need – Self-Empathy/’Intensity’ Practice

(courtesy of  the work of John Kinyon &*

Self-Empathy with the Enemy Image Process
Enemy Image Process Worksheet

Additional Handouts via:

John Kinyon discusses what brought him to NVCYouTube

John Kinyon shares what NVC means for him. – YouTube

See also:’s Tracking Aid

Screaming in Anger – Connection Gem of the Week

It is better to be violent, if there is violence in our hearts, than to put on the cloak of nonviolence to cover impotence.
Mahatma Gandhi
Indian political and spiritual leader (1869 – 1948)

Giraffe Fighting (courtesy of Miki Kashtan)

Notice several situations where disagreements occur:

  1. Write down examples of what you said during these interactions.
  2. How did your choices attend to your needs (and how not)?
  3. How did what you said attend to the needs of others (and how not)?
  4. Were you able to keep your heart open to your own needs and experience?
  5. Can you identify what you might have done to attend more fully to your own needs?
  6. Can you imagine what you might have done to attend more fully to the other person’s needs more fully?
  7. Can you imagine a path that would have moved you closer to a solution that would have worked for both of you?
  8. Notice what obstacles prevented you from responding in a way you would have preferred (for example an emotional reaction such as fear and/or a belief/judgement that you may have held as to the other).
  9. Also note ways in which you were able to respond in a way which served needs, even partially (for example, taking a breath prior to responding).

Most quarrels amplify a misunderstanding.
— Andre Gide

Conflict Hotline – Jan ’10 (1 of 6), Anger – YouTube

Watch the Conflict Hotline:

Click here to see a complete listing and description of all the episodes from the three years of the program since 2009 (with links to them on YouTube).

Dr. Giraffe/Mr. Jackal – Brain on NVC (via Susan Skye)

A new kind of mind thus begins to come into being which is based on the development of a common meaning that is constantly transforming in the process of the dialogue.    David Bohm*

The reptilian complex*‎:

The amygdala in the emotional center sees and hears everything that occurs to us instantaneously and is the trigger point for the fight or flight response.
Daniel Goleman

Dr. Dan Siegel – “The Low Road” – YouTube

Human beings, as they evolved, didn’t lose the fight or flight response; they just built on top of this “reptilian brain.” The new layer was the “cerebral cortex,” which allowed us to reflect on experiences and develop ideas rather than just act out instinctual responses.

~ David Rickey

Triune Brain

Red: Ventromedial Prefrontal Cortex

Image courtesy of wikimedia commons

Nine Middle Prefrontal Cortext Functions

Essay:  Reflections on the Mindful Brain by Daniel J. Siegel, M.D

COAL: Curiosity, Openness, Acceptance and Love.

Dr. Dan Siegel on Mindsight – YouTube

Additional Resources – Reading List (courtesy of Susan Skye) *

Three Academic Pieces:  1, 2, 3

For more clips of Dr. Siegel, see blog re:  Giraffe Mindsight

Dynamics of Self-Connection (chart) via Linnaea Marvell

See also:  Dynamics of Self-Connection (blank chart)

NVC – Jackal to Giraffe Translation Dictionary

Wise Heart (blog) -Additional Resources


VI.  Check-out w/ Connection Requests:

(courtesy of the work of Miki Kashtan – see for further details/copyright)

Connection-Requests doc

Flowers, Tears & Lightbulbs Journal

How to Practice Nonviolent Communication (with pictures) – wikiHow

Giraffe standing in acacia woodland

2 Responses to Tele-Practice Resources


    Howdy–I seek text revision help to meet my emotional needs concerning my family. They are validation and vindication, and respect for
    my authority, or at least an honest discussion about it.

    Authority is a form of of control, I hear, and all control is violent, they say, but I’m close to hurting them physically, mentally, or otherwise. Control is security, and that allows closeness if not intimacy; outside that, outside genuine dialog, there is
    only isolation, and I’m perusing that choice, as I write, but ideal, it is not.

    I can’t talk to them, so I’m seeking some kind of armor to engage them without getting angry, and frustrated.

    My ostensible goal is to hold my family accountable, and raise this to a question of protocol and procedure, but no rude disengagement on the issue of who has right of way in a traffic jam .

    But whatever you do, please don’t recommend me to They can’t help, because they recommended me to Facebook and Google groups. They don’t have any forum on their site, so don’t mention them–I just smashed a plate when someone did, which obliged me to write this ensuring it will
    never happen again.

    NVC is about how to ask, but what I’m asking for is respect for my my authority, which allows me to demand compliance–a Catch-22. My family may well reject me, and thus, I’m seeking validation, elsewhere, namely
    from those helping me ask. I judge my mother especially a coward, but others reaching that same conclusion after trying to convince her of the same thing, would meet my need for vindication.

    • Pamela says:

      Philip ~ I only came across your comment this weekend and it’s been a stretch for me to know how to reply. I’ll begin by offering a disclaimer that this site has no official or unofficial affiliation with CNVC, nor am I professionally associated with NVC (not a certified trainer, etc.). This blog may come across as wide-ranging, however in many ways it’s focus is rather narrow: just one communication practitioner forging a path in the art of conversation through trial and error. So when I read what you said about the intensity of your frustration and a sense of being thwarted from attending to your needs in a resourceful way, by both your family and CNVC, concern and fear arise in me. Especially when you spoke of bordering on the brink of violence, whether to yourself (the plate) or others. This seems beyond the scope of this blog nor my capacity to offer help. I’ll say more about this at the end, however first off I’ve opted to attempt to clarify something in case there may have been some misunderstanding. I get a sense that you expressed what you did in an attempt to convey the enormity of your emotional intensity and sense of agitation at not being sufficiently empowered to have an affect on what’s happening around you (resulting in a steady sense of being distressed and unable to connect with others sufficiently to attend to your needs to be seen, understood, and respected). Conveying the sense that things could burst through from the emotional towards the physical may be attempt to be seen for the extent of your sense of pain and challenge. I understand this yet, unfortunately, this is another avenue which is inadequate to the task of offering the support that you may wish for. While naming this blog “street”, as in anti-establishment, and speaking — you might have read in some posts — of my more heterodox than orthodox approach to NVC — Mandela v. Gandhi/King, I’m exclusively thinking within the bounds of dialogue and the consciousness that influences it. One of the cornerstones of NVC, as I understand it, is the distinction between needs and strategies (do a search for “PLATO” on the site for more on this). The longing inside of us is an indication of what we are valuing, our needs, however to demand with specificity that our needs be met by someone or something in particular is not the ethos of the consciousness, as I have come to understand it. A short hand phrase to think about this is “holding our needs (for respect etc.), tightly but our strategies (as to who/how to attend to these needs in tangible ways) lightly.” To have a clearer sense of this, google Miki Kashtan article “Wanting Fully Without Attachment” (in some ways the crux of the consciousness). Finding this non-attachment is certainly not always easy, but it’s at the root of the tradition of nonviolence which inspired Marshall Rosenberg to develop this communication. As it’s MLK day, as I respond to you, I cannot help but recall an anecdote of a time when King and others — during the civil rights era — were jam packed into a church, deep in the south, when a hostile (bordering on violent) mob encircled the church. MLK asked for only those most committed to nonviolence to walk outside the church doors, through the mob, and into a cab that they had called upon and was waiting for them. He wanted those who were the most trained in nonviolence, to ensure that they would be non-reactive if assaulted, and somehow the conviction with which they carried themselves diffused the escalating mob violence. They emerged from the church unscathed. I think of this now as I believe it’s similar with the preparatory work that goes into NVC. Being equipped to deal with a challenging circumstance, such as being treated differently than we might have hoped, comes (I suspect) from the groundwork that is laid before hand. That is partly why I have offered links to many of the resources that I have accessed, including free ones such as NVC Academy’s Thursday night practice group, and their monthly Compassionate Leadership call, or Miki Kashtan’s Fearless Heart. These and other resources work gradually and incrementally, with much elbow grease. And, to circle back to the disclaimer I mentioned at the outset, I suspect that when there are patterns of thought that are intrusive, it may very well require other kinds of support by way of professional expertise. Sometimes you have to complain where it will make a difference, in other words, to those who can help you in a meaningful way. I hope that this has provided you something, but beyond this reply, I don’t have the spaciousness or energy to offer more, other than referrals for NVC coaching or mediation if that might be an option you’d want to explore. Most everything else I might point towards is posted on the website (FYI – NVC Academy also has a vast library that can be accessed for a modest monthly sum via their help desk). The CNVC website also has a list of NVC certified trainers and practice groups that may be more accessible, in your area. Otherwise, I wish you well in 2017…

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