Wanting to attain true fluency and ease in your communication?
Despite the progress you’ve made in learning these communication skills, you may still feel uncertain or awkward in how you use them.
Maybe they are coming across as “technique-y”, or maybe certain relationships still feel stuck and you aren’t sure exactly how to use the skills to handle them.
You can attain fluency! You can sound like a totally normal person in conversation, and avoid jargon, without falling back into old patterns that didn’t really work.
A small group to gain true fluency in peacefully successful communication
This group is specifically designed for three kinds of situations:
Why you may not have gotten the results you want so far
You can get there! What it takes
I wish I could tell you that you could read a book or attend a weekend workshop and everything would be the way you want it. But you already know it’s not that simple.
It does take time and effort to make effective communication a set of “go to” habits that you use fluently and consistently – but you can do it.
In this ongoing group program, we’re going to focus on the three key aspects of truly effective and connecting communication:
What are group sessions like?
The group sessions are structured to include really key elements for gaining mastery while also building connection and a sense of warm, welcoming community.
First of all, you are going to get to practice outside the rush and pressure of everyday life. Simply having these conversations in a separate space where you can take your time to think about how to use the skills can make a huge difference. Because when you’re trying to learn something new, you need to start by going more slowly – otherwise you just end up “practicing” old habits that don’t actually work.
In addition, the sessions are designed to help you feel safe and comfortable while you learn, because it’s natural to feel a little vulnerable when trying something new.
For example, you’ll get written material about each skill well ahead of the calls, so you can take as much time as you’d like to go over it and you can return to it as often as you want. The written material explains the “what, why and how” of each skill, and includes multiple examples so you can see how it can be used.
Then you’ll have the opportunity to try the skills in writing first, so you can take your time to really think about how to apply them. To draft and edit to your heart’s content, until you feel satisfied that you’ve done the best you know how.
On the calls themselves, there’s lots of appreciation, empathy and laughter.
In addition to comfortable opportunities to practice the skills, that’s when we go over together what people have done in writing and I share hints and tricks about what tends to make communication work well. These are the kinds of things that often take decades of practice to discover, but seem quite simple and easy once you know them, and they can make a big difference in your day-to-day interactions.
You also have the option to be paired up with a different practice partner each month, so you can practice out loud with no one else listening, and focus on getting really comfortable and fluent until you find yourself naturally and automatically using the skills in your everyday life situations.
I started studying communication because I’m not naturally gifted at it.
If I had to define what my natural gift is – it is pissing people off. I’m really good at that.
But when I use the approach that I teach, that doesn’t happen. People like me, I like them, and we all like the solutions we come up with together. The process flows and it’s easy.
And here’s what clinches it for me – sometimes I “fall off the wagon” and slip back into communicating the way I used to do. And then I get exactly the same results I used to get.
People get frustrated and annoyed and (sometimes) yell at me. And they try to tell me what to do – I really hate that! They don’t listen to me and they certainly don’t want to cooperate with me.
So that’s how I know this approach really works – because the results I get are not about me as a person – they are the result of how I choose to communicate in each situation.
I discovered this way of communicating (NVC) back in January 2003, and immediately knew it was the answer to my quest for how to support myself and others to create connection – especially when differences, challenges and conflicts arise.
I practiced using it myself for almost a year – to make sure I really understood how to use this approach to resolve and prevent conflict myself – before I started sharing it with others. It’s also the reason I went through the extremely rigorous process of becoming a Certified NVC Trainer with the International Center for Nonviolent Communication.
I started out teaching NVC the way I was taught. But I’m impatient, and I wasn’t seeing people getting the benefits soon enough. Also, working with students who had been trained by other NVC trainers, I heard story after story of people actually turning their friends and family “off” of communicating in this way because they misunderstood how the tools were intended to be used.
So I’ve spent the last 15 years experimenting with hundreds of ways of sharing this work – with individuals, couples, families and work teams. Zeroing in on how to help people get the benefits of NVC as quickly and easily as possible, without turning anyone off. And people are now consistently getting the results I set out to achieve – using the tools of NVC to create connection and make their lives and relationships better right from their first session.
But it has also become clear to me that, no matter how well we learn this material, we all still need the support of a community of people who share our understanding. That is my goal in creating this group – for it to provide that kind of community for you.
How It Works
This is a very small group program – a maximum of 6 people – so there is opportunity for everyone to receive individual attention and support.
Two group sessions a month by phone / computer:
Practice Partner Option:
In addition to the whole-group sessions, each month you’ll have the opportunity to be paired up with someone else in the program for between-sessions connection, practice and empathy. You’ll get a suggested structured agenda for the sessions to help get things rolling (and support you in practicing multiple skills), with the freedom to modify it as you wish. And each month I’ll offer a suggested verbal practice activity to go with the meta-skill of the month, to help you build even more comfort and ease in using it.
My intention is to offer this program on a continuous basis, as long as there are at least 4 people in the group.
When you join the group, I ask that you start with a 6 month initial commitment for two reasons. The first is that we’ll be working with relationships, which can be tender for folks, and it will be MUCH easier if there is stability in the group. Secondly, a six-month commitment recognizes that the fluency you are looking for doesn’t take a week or a month, but practice over time.
We currently meet two Thursday evenings each month from 7:30-9:30 pm Eastern. We try to schedule the sessions on dates that everyone can attend. The dates for fall 2019 and early 2020 are:
October 24 / November 9, 14*, 21 / December 5 / January 9, 16, 23.
*We’ll be meeting on a different day during this week to accommodate my schedule.
Fee: $197 per month (plus HST)
If what you’ve read here appeals to you, let’s have a conversation to make sure it’s a good fit. There are two steps to this:
Not ready to have a conversation, but have a question for me about this program? Click here to send me an email.
Whether you choose to speak with me or not, I wish you a warm and welcoming community that supports you in enjoying your life to the full!
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