“Understanding the other person’s needs does not mean you have to give up on your own needs.” – Marshall Rosenberg
I’ve been deeply exploring nonviolent communication for the past six months, and have been experiencing a deep relishing in honoring my needs. We live in a culture that often wants women to bend or eradicate their needs, which is unhelpful and unfruitful. Your needs matter. Getting your needs met is an act of faith and love and necessary. I also want to acknowledge that it is even harder for non-white bodies to get their needs met. This often shows up as black and brown bodied folk letting go of their needs to take care of white bodied needs. Because we live in a domination culture, we’re used to one person’s needs getting met and the other person/people submitting. We call this compromise. What do you give up? What does the other give up?
This understanding of my own needs is a practice. Then I add the layer of sharing them. Another layer is the empathetic listening to the other person’s needs. Then together, we can co-create the solutions. Whew. This feels like the work of our times.
I have been praying and practicing. How do I hold my own needs and take care of the needs of those I love? How do I hold my needs and care for client needs or group needs as I facilitate? This is a tender practice and as with anything lacking prescription, filled with play as much as tension. Get used to this space, as it is filled with squirmy goodies as we relearn how to hold our own AND the other. We are like dancers. To be in the fluidity of the movement, we must be willing to hold the tension and falter.
These Soulful Sunday blogs go out weekly on Sundays to be used as a place to step back from the hustle and bustle and explore what your soul might be saying to you. Some folks use these as journal prompts and let loose amidst pages. Some folks bring them to the kitchen table and jam over coffee. Do you, boo.
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