Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Year of Report:
A. Approximately how many training days did you have this year?:
B. Briefly list the groups and organizations you worked with this year as a trainer.:

Hospitals, medical clinics, Unitarian-Universalist and Methodist Churches, Noetic Science organizations, mediation/conflict resolution organizations, coaching organizations, city/county councils.

C. Approximately how many people did you offer NVC training to this year?:
D. What are you celebrating about your training experiences this year? What was significant for you? What touched your heart?:

I’m appreciative of the many diverse opportunities we enjoyed this year, and the chance to travel to share NVC in new places. I’m especially grateful for the experience of Compassionate Leadership Training. Working with Rodger Sorrow, Kathi Aichner and Jori has been a remarkably fulfilling and enriching experience on many levels. I also enjoyed working with Marshall and Valentina at the Special Session and the March IIT. I continue to savor the practice group via NVC Academy that celebrated its second year in 2008, (and still continues as of Dec 09!) I enjoyed offering our first training via NVC Academy as well, focusing on Conflict.

E. Would you share some difficult experiences you had while training this year and how you handled them?:

Its difficult for me to connect in the moment with any difficult experiences involving training, per se, mostly because so much time has passed.

In late March, we were just finishing a workshop in Texas, doing a closing round when my cell phone buzzed in my pocket. Generally, I ignore such interruptions during training. However, knowing that my Mom had been ill the last time I spoke with her, I glanced at the phone and saw that it was my Dad. I chose to leave the workshop to attend to the call, caring for my Mom, my Dad, and worried about what the call might mean. Of course, it was the call no one likes to receive, and the one we all face at some time. I learned that my Mom’s condition had seriously deteriorated, that she had “died” on the way to the hospital and had been resuscitated. Somehow, I stayed present, listening to my father and the doctor as they explained what had happened and the likely course of events, requesting that I get to Atlanta as soon as possible.I returned to the workshop, giving myself tons of self-compassion, working to stay present in the face of knowing my intentions to leave as soon as possible. I shared with the group what was going on as authentically as I could and received a bath of concern, sympathy, empathy and offers of support.

I did have difficulties with my relationship with CNVC’s Admin Team, specifically around the change in form of my relationship as an IIT organizer, LT member and GCC coordinator. I’m mourning how my need for connection and inclusion was not met, especially how I did not “advocate for the Universe" I would like to live in (thanks Jorge for the quote) as well as I would like.

I mourn my own tendency to become hynotized by Authority. I mourn how much life energy I squandered perseverating and suffering about people and situations I had no control over. For me, now, its “water under the bridge”, although I’m sad that I do not feel as connected to “CNVC” as I once did. I still relish the sense of connection with the trainer network, especially trainers I get to connect with and play with on a regular basis!

F. How do you teach the spiritual basis of Nonviolent Communication in your workshops and training programs? :

For me, the essence of NVC is the radical intention to stay present to my feelings and needs from moment-to-moment, to cultivate choice in responding to the messages I receive from others and to honestly, authentically share my experience with others while remaining open to receiving their responses with an empathic heart. I work to convey this spiritual clarity in my training through the natural modeling that occurs as a result of my ongoing integration of NVC and by sharing this intention verbally through the spoken and written word.

I don’t believe that you can teach the spiritual basis in any “real” way, since the spiritual basis is our very nature. Teaching implies imparting something that was previously absent. How can you teach something that is eternally Present?

My job as a trainer seems to be to remind people of their birthright: who they are, delicious, juicy ever-changing human beings; what they know, deep in their hearts; and to offer tools to help folks remove the barriers to the Presence of their own spiritual clarity that is always here and now and integrate that consciousness more fully into their lives.

G. Please describe your social change goals...:

My dream is to continue to work creating trainings and opportunities for the next generation of NVC leaders. I’m also intending to continue our social change projects in the medical field, the restorative justice arena, and through community building wherever we go. NVC remains the language, the skill set and the consciousness that anchors my work. Reframing power dynamics through peeling layers of submission and domination remains the framework for my work in social change.

H. Please describe your efforts to create, or join, an NVC circle or organization.:

My term as co-leader of the GCC concluded at the end of June. For the previous year and half that dominated much of my time, averaging over 20 hours per week on a volunteer basis. I intended to continue to support the GCC as a consultant, and there were other requests that made it clear that was not desired, at least not initially.I shifted my attention to other projects, focusing on building a circle of NVC leaders via Compassionate Leadership. I also continue to participate in NVC communities, fostering connection and mutual support in various locations, especially New Mexico, southern California, Texas, Georgia, Edmonton and Hawaii.

I. Summarize participants’ evaluations, and how their feedback resulted in new learning or growth for you this past year.:

People continue to express appreciation for the contribution of our work.If you want to hear or see more, see the testimonials on

Since so much time has elapsed since 2008, its hard for me to recall specifics as I (hopefully) have integrated the feedback that I have received.

I have learned to more enjoy making mistakes. It continues to be a challenge to co-train, even though Jori and I have done that for several years. Talk about an ever-receding edge! Adding two new trainers to the mix (Rodger and Kathi), acted like an accelerant to my own integration. Working with the CNVC leadership provided ample opportunities for me to discover how easy it is to get addicted to a strategy and how powerful NVC can be to become liberated from addictive patterns!

J. What are your current growing edges or challenges as a trainer that you will be working on in the future?:

My edges are around balancing self-care, saying “no”, and cultivating the willingness to express my needs and requests.

K. If you found opportunities to work with other trainers this year, please share the most meaningful experiences for you.:

I have shared training in 08 with many folks. I’m most touched by how Kathi, Rodger, Jori and I created a working relationship that fostered mutuality, interdependence and remarkable ease as we planned and implemented our first extended training community.

L. Is there anything else you would enjoy sharing with the CNVC network?:

I remain grateful to be sharing the mission and vision of CNVC with a growing cadre of “family”. I mourn how slowly our organization seems to respond to the needs of the training network. I wish folks pivoting social change project in regions of the world with less access to resources (eg Brazil, Aftica) received more direct support from CNVC in the form of grant-writing and flowing resources from wealthy countries to less affluent nations and areas. I wish the CNVC leadership teams (Admin Team, Board, Office staff, etc) will easily receive an abundance of the empathy, understanding and love that they need in order to thrive!


Andrew Crane said...

I'm touched by the openness here Jim, and the sense of connection met while I read it. I'd encourage other trainers to post their reports also, if willing. The greatest gift you have given me is your consistent effort to model by revealing yourself in the moment. Thanks

Jeff said...

I enjoyed reading your comments. My needs for learning, understanding and discovery were met. Thank you for allowing yourself to be vulnerable, authentic and in the moment.

AmyMcQ said...

Jim, I was very touched by your vulnerability and authenticity here. I'm grateful for your sharing this, partly because I feel a greater connection to you, and partly for some clarity of what a trainer report might look like. I'm very excited to be doing CL10, and can't wait to work and play with you, Jori, Roger, Kathy and Faye!

annie said...

I so enjoy the ease in your words. The flow and calm contribute to my peace. I also treasure self care and sharing. I love the close connection to the contrast in your life. Being together is so precious to me.
Gratefully smiling.

Alicia said...

I have such gratitude for you sharing so openly, as it gives me a better understanding of what is involved in being a certified trainer. I see how much work goes into being present in each moment, what is involved in planning a workshop (seeing that as an intern with Compassionate Leadership 2010) and advertising to get enough folks there to make it interesting. After reading this I am struck at how impatient I feel when things don't move along easily in my current job and now I realize that these moments of impatience and frustration are gifts for me to be present and connect with needs. I am struck with how each moment is a learning experience, and that if I only stay present to each moment, large tasks will eventually be accomplished. Wheh, I got all that from what you said? Thank you!

Craig Sones Cornell said...

Wow, way cool. I am stirred to relive some of my own triggers around what I harbor as unmet needs that I hold with constriction and judgment as they melt into the beauty of those needs as embodied realities that are independent of my doing and demanding of self and others.

The flow of your words leave me with a sense of grace and blessedness. Jim I can't wait to reconnect with you and the others at CL10 and in other ways that we may not have yet figured out.

I am alive with possibility and inspiration and now have more spaciousness and hope for how I might interface with CNVC and the whole certification--I was about to write drama and realize with a simle and a soft kick in the pants that it is all so much what we tell ourselves, what I am telling myself--and so I will write process.

I am enraptured with how you translated some very powerful experiences with the notification of your mother's journey into this your relating of deep wellsprings of resourcefulness and conneciotn with self and others. I sense both the throbbing of your radically compassionate heart and such skill and flow in the words. Ahhh. Hope and inspiration.

Again, way, way cool brother.