Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Trainer Report

Each year, trainers who want to remain certified with the Center for Nonviolent Communication agree to publish a report for CNVC. This report is generally seen only by other trainers, board members and staff of CNVC. I thought it might be fun and hopefully inspiring for others if I published my report here. I'd love to hear from you if any of your needs are met by reading it...

TRAINER REPORT FORM:

YEAR COVERED BY THIS REPORT: 2005

I. SUMMARY OF YOUR NVC WORK

Jori and I facilitated almost 200 “training events” in 2005, ranging from small regular practice groups, to weekend workshops in New Mexico and Georgia, as well as introducing NVC in the local jail to both inmates and supervisors. We were "on the air" again for two radio interviews, and helped to produce a 3 day "Marshall event" in Albuquerque and Santa Fe. We also got our "foot in the door" with Albuquerque Public Schools, one of the largest school systems in the US.

I took a two-month hiatus from mid-March through mid-May to support my parents as my father recovered form a heart valve replacement. The highlight of the year for me was our journey to support the Peace Army in Costa Rica. We also participated in dozens of mediations and facilitated meetings, as well as “coaching” sessions. For the first time since creating a "career" based on peace-making in 1993, we achieved financial sustainability.

A. TRAINING EVENTS: INTRODUCTIONS, BASICS, IITS, ETC.
Workshop #attendees
January Intensive 7
Tierra Madre Realty training Foundations 6
Intro at First Church of Religious Science 35
APS Mediation Retreat: Dealing with Difficult Messages 12
The Power oF Empathy & Gratitude 7
KSFR radio interview w/ Diego 5000
KUNM radio interview w/ Halima & Stephen Weiss 10000
Weekly Practice group (Mon, Sun) 29
Intermediate Series - NVC Consciousness 6
Intro 14
Empathy Theatre 10
Practice group 13
Foundations 14
APS Living with Loss 150
NM Mediation Assn: The Heart of Mediation 20
Peace Fair 50
Salt of the Earth Intro 9
Intro 2
Intro, Park Terrace Apts 3
Intro, Athens, GA 50
Athens, GA weekend workshop 27
Foundations am 6
Foundatons pm 9
Foundations 2 7
Intro: Bernalillo County detention Center inmates 18
Intro: Peals of the Antilles Art Gallery 3
Transforming Inner Conflict 8
Intro SecruityRE Insurance Co (Two trainings) 16
Intro High Desert Yoga 30
Intro New Life Presbyterian Church 4
Foundations 2 8
Foundations 1 9
Bahai 16
Relationships 6
intro 10
Compassionate Families 15
Foundations 2 8
mediation 8
Foundations 1 18
YogaNow 6
Hogares 22
mediation/UNM 28
Jail supervisors 42
jail inmates 50
Costa Rica 385
Eye Care Office 14
Bahai 12
Total: Approximately 16000



We have 2 ongoing practice groups that we facilitate; one has been going for about 3 years. 2.5 hours/week. The other, focused on families, started in August. Participation ranges from 18 to 2.

C. OTHER EVENTS SUCH AS CONFERENCES, PANELS, SPECIAL
PRESENTATIONS. We hosted several community-building events at our home throughout the year, including our annual Interdependence Day celebration that coincides with the July 4 holiday in the US. We also promoted and helped produce an MBR event which drew at least 200 participants. We participated in a radio interview on KSFR, Public Radio in Santa Fe and KUNM in Santa Fe. Our website continued to reach out to folks throughout NM and beyond.

D. ANYTHING THAT STANDS OUT AS ESPECIALLY NOTEWORTHY THAT YOU WOULD LIKE TO SHARE WITH OUR NETWORK.
Our training experience in Costa Rica. We participated in a series of events coordinated by the Rasur Foundation and Rita Marie Johnson, including a national symposium co-sponsored by the Arias Foundation. We trained Peace Army volunteer trainers, as well as Ticos from all walks of life.



E. YOUR ESTIMATE OF THE TOTAL NUMBER OF PEOPLE YOU OFFERED NVC TRAINING TO IN THE PAST YEAR.
16,000

II. DESCRIBE YOUR PARTICIPATION IN THE CNVC NETWORK: WORKING WITH A REGIONAL TEAM, MEMBER OF A COMMITTEE, PROJECT, ETC.
We remain actively involved with the NM Network for NVC a 501C(3) oganization, which continues its mission of spreading NVC through our twice-monthly e-mailings and continuously updated website, nvc-nm.org. We helped to promote and produce MBR's 3 day visit to ABQ and Santa Fe.
We forged and maintained alliances with the Peace Army of Costa Rica, Albuquerque Center for Peace and Justice, Sikh Dharma/3HO, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque Public Schools, NM Mediation Association, First Church of Religious Science, Bahai of Albuquerque, Zen Peacemakers, Rainbow Sangha, as well as CNVC. Practice Groups continue in Albuquerque, Las Cruces, Santa Fe, Taos, and Mountainair..
Jori became a board member and is now the interim director of CNVC.


III. ONGOING LEARNING

A. SUMMARIZE PARTICIPANTS' EVALUATIONS AND DESCRIBE IN WHAT WAY THEY
RESULTED IN LEARNING OR GROWTH FOR YOU.

Participants generally express how their needs are met during our training. I have come to most enjoy hearing when participants' needs have not been met, as I almost always learn something valuable from that kind of feedback.

I have grown from feedback about pacing, clarity, expressing desired training outcomes, modeling empathy and honesty and observing and adjusting to group dynamics. My understanding of the NVC process has deepened and I celebrate that I am actualizing NVC consciousness more in my life. I marvel at the transformational power of NVC!

B. WHAT ARE YOUR GROWING EDGES/CHALLENGES AS AN NVC TRAINER?

I have deeply enjoyed connecting with the life-enriching power of gratitude. I disovered a self-connection/gratitude process that sustained me during my 2 months living with my parents which involved a periodic conscious scan of the state of my needs, celebrating and savoring the needs that are met in any given moment and choosing to attend and to and mourn my unmet needs.

My "edge" continues to be cultivating the courage to speak my needs and requests with honesty. I celebrate that I have grown in this area, and also recognize that speaking up for my needs "goes against the grain" of my habitual tendency to stifle my needs in favor of others.

Last year, my "word" was vigor. I feel happy (and energized) to report that my connection to my personal power was deeply enhanced last year. I developed new life-affirming habits to support me in creating the world I want to live in!

This year, my word is gratitude. I intend to continue the gratitude binge I have begun, with the intention of savoring every morsel life offers me, working to expand my gratitude to the "lesson-bearers" who help me to connect with the edges of my growth and integration of NVC consciousness.

3 comments:

Doug said...

Jim,
Thank you very much for sharing your progress report of last year. I am very satisfied (grateful) to know about the variety and diversity of interests and activities tha you all have been doing, and especially satisfied to see you financially sustainable!
I've also taken the time to read thru all your posts since the blog inception and am delighted to hear about your life in NM in comparison to CA, and what joy it brings to you.

I'm looking forward to gaining more skill at "listening with empathy", especially with those who might not be instantly amenable to the two or three part "formal" model. Can you recommend a source or two for further reflection and discussion?

Thanks,
Doug Johnson

Jim said...

Doug,
First I feel grateful hearing that reading my report met some needs for you. I feel touched and hopeful when I read of your longing to becoming ever more skillful in empathically connecting with others.

A few things come up for me in response. Marshall has a CD entitled “Needs and Empathy”
which has supported my learning.

I also like doing listening exercises and practices, including empathizing with songs, tv shows, the news, etc. Simply start with an intention to connect, then listen for the feelings and needs which form the "deep structure" of any communication, learning to use the "surface structure" of thoughts, opinions, and judgments as a "trigger" to "go deeper" to the level of feelings and needs.

When I was relatively new to NVC, I also tried an experiment. I chose to listen to others when they spoke with a commitment (to myself) to not respond unless the other person asked me to. This was not an easy task, but I learned a lot about my own habitual tendencies that prevented me from connecting with empathy.

Finally, I'm remebering hearing Marshall say,something like, "Never think that what you say is empathy. The minute we do that, we're off target. Empathy is where we place our attention, on the feelings and needs of the other, with an intent to respectfully understand them and to give them the gift of our presence."
I wonder how you feel hearing that?

Doug said...

Hi Jim,
Thanks for taking the time to potentially enrich my practice of listening with empathy. I've taken out my CD of "Needs and EMpathy" for later listening.

I am paying lots of attention to your suggestion to not make comments and suggestions (or provide feedback) until asked... I'm currently using a similar idea. I'm seeing that most communications around me are about "content", not the deeper stuff of feelings and needs, and I'm electing to listen to the content but not to respond at that level, but I am willing to talk about the distinction to others as opposed to entering into the content conversation. Still not quite empathy but I sense moving in the right direction.
As I listen to others I'm noticing often now that still I want to either "express honestly" or to offer strategies--- both of which I try to accept as "things happening within me but not necessarily useful for others". I notice that it sometimes feels like I'm not "really" being involved in someone's life if I don't actually express or offer ideas. And then I reflect on how often and how much I want to be seen and heard, and this helps me to be quiet and focus on the other--- reflecting feelings and needs as they come into my/our view.

So I guess I'm saying that there seems to be some strong risk in just "listening with empathy", something to do with losing ego control (?), somehting to do with being rejected, or being the brunt of sarcasm, etc.

I am grateful for the opportunity to respond here... thanks, I've gained some insights about my listening process!
Doug