Would you like...
* more self-control and ease in challenging situations?
* freedom from reacting to imaginary bullets coming at you?
* skills for getting back to fullness after being triggered?
Join us for a 10-week series focused on self-connection through Nonviolent Communication (NVC) practices online through Zoom Starting Thu Nov 30 @11am-12:30pm PST. First session FREE. Please select the largest tuition possible to support other participants.
Thursday Dates: 11/30, 12/7, 12/14, 12/21, 12/28, 1/4/2024, 1/11, 1/18, 1/25, 2/1 (10 weeks)
Times: 11am-12:30pm Pacific Standard Time (PST), (2pm - 3:30pm Eastern)
Optional: Providing 30 minutes for additional discussion and questions starting at 12:30 pm Pacific (3:30 pm Eastern)
Location: Zoom link provided with registration.
Materials: The presentation slides are provided during the meeting. Zoom sessions are recorded and provided in member-only series webpage along with the slides PDF for download.
*** Free First Session Thursday Nov 30, 2023 @11AM Pacific click to register here for reminder email with Zoom information ***
- As a homeschooling mom and working professional, I am constantly in the midst of high-demand situations. Reactivity was a huge issue for me, one that I felt hopeless to overcome. However, the tools that James empowered me with during the first half of the course have empowered me to free myself from reactivity for the last 6 weeks! James is very well organized with the content and the method of delivery. This met my need for organization and learning. The role plays we did together provided a healing balm to my heart. He has developed a fantastic buddy system and I was able to tap into the rich life experiences of my peers in the course. Above all, James' empathic heart led to a life-transforming experience for me, one that I highly recommend to anyone considering living a more wholehearted life! From hopeless, I feel hopeful! Ratika Dayaldasani
- "Free Yourself from Reactivity" is a great class if you want to learn about what makes you angry and how to internally manage it using Non Violent Communications knowledge and skills. James Prieto is extremely well versed in NVC and an extremely compassionate person. He taught with skill and confidence and made each session interesting and relevant. I learned a tremendous amount and have started to integrate and embody the information and skills." Stefan Benton, MFT Private Practice
- "James is a skillful online facilitator who was able to translate complex ideas into digestible lessons for weekly practice. Thank you, James, for sharing your generosity and wisdom ~ Catherine Etmanski (Victoria, Canada)
"This course helped me find freedom. I don't feel tortured by other peoples' words and actions. Now it's apparent to me that they were trying to get their needs met, even if they didn't use an effective strategy. Any event in my life that causes bad feelings can be used as a tool to go deeper within to learn my feelings, my needs and my desires. From there I can nurture myself and ultimately see the humanity in others." Megan Heikes, Childcare and Elementary teacher, Cook County Schools
- "The breadth of material in this series was amazing. Even more so the skill with which it was presented by James Prieto. To anyone wanting to deal with reactivity, as well as learn how better to connect with oneself and others, I highly recommend both the series and James. I'm seeing changes in all my relationships, particularly my relationship with myself." Gwynne Pratt, Attorney, State of California
- "James has put together an outstanding course for learning and practicing NVC. His skills are well disguised by his gentle, compassionate and humble approach. What appeared to be subtle and insignificant delivered a powerful and profound result in my personal life. I highly recommend James' NVC courses for anyone looking to come alive to relating to Self and others with a newfound depth of Empathy and Compassion." J.W., Hypnotherapist, Jungian based Inner Work Facilitator, Life Coach, Consultant and Author
- Click here for more Testimonials
Note: Zoom sessions main room recorded and available for registered participants through members-only webpage.
Not long ago, I used to get triggered often -- i.e. means that something set me off to react automatically. One day at lunch with colleagues, someone said something I didn't like and I responded in ways that I now regret. At another time in a work meeting, I reacted to hearing opinions that differed from mine. I'm embarrassed to think back to how that may have landed for them. I'm now surprised at how quickly I reacted without thought to the consequences.
After years of personal growth work, coaching and training in Nonviolent Communication, I've synthesized practices that help me stay grounded, present and clear headed. While I still occasionally get triggered, I've noticed the frequency of occurrence is hugely reduced, and my recovery time is much shorter -- within seconds, for most things, and within a day for the big ones. In short, I have tools to stay calm most of the time and to choose how to respond in difficult situations instead of reacting.
My Learning/Facilitation Style:
My offerings and personal NVC practice are inspired by many NVC trainers over 21 years; though primarily Marshall Rosenberg, Jim & Jori Manske, Mary Mackenzie and Robert Gonzales.
My active area of research relates to NVC and nature-based depth psychology as described by Bill Plotkin’s book “Wild Mind.” I created the “Heart-Canvas” as a tool for self-empathy. I also published a book on NVC Spirituality in 2010 titled “The Joy of Compassionate Connecting.”
What I’ve noticed about my learning style is that it follows more of a spiral than a linear process. That means that I find value in trying and experiencing a variety of things, integrating them into my daily practice over time. This includes training with a variety of NVC trainers and other modalities, as everyone seems to provide a unique perspective of our collective "language of life.”
Recognizing that this spiral is common to the learning styles of many others, I find it helpful to define a high-level outline for my classes, let participants try (and sometimes stumble through) a high-level process, and then spend time going deeper into the experience of each step.
For instance, I learned about “Zero Step” and “Layers of Empathy” 13 years ago from Jim & Jori Manske. As I look back at what they were teaching at the time, I now have a deeper appreciation and respect for the gift of those teachings. I’ve internalized much of what I’ve learned through years of practice.
Participants seem to enjoy the balance between structure and experiential learning. For a sample of my processes, check out the blog section of this website.
Another example, I experienced first-hand with Marshall Rosenberg the power of presence in empathic role-plays. I shared with him some deep old pain associated with the transition of my primary relationship and becoming a Dad. The experience was so cathartic that I felt a rush of energy released from my body. I’m still integrating that experience, waking up to how my own childhood affected my ability to show up as a partner and father.
The “8-steps to Stop Trigger Bullets” could be seen as that high-level outline for this course. There is so much more to learn, practice and grow behind each one of those steps. The more you practice, the easier and faster it becomes. Like Neo in The Matrix, at some point, it clicks and you’re able to see and stop the trigger bullets for what they are...
Unfortunately, most of us have been educated from birth to compete, judge, demand, diagnose, to do things out of guilt/shame, and to think and communicate in terms of what is “right“ or “wrong“ with people. Our "implicit bias" fosters the creation of "enemy images" of those who look and behave differently than us. When un-examined, "implicit bias" results in racism.
We also blame others for our feelings, as if they caused them. Even worse, we might blame ourselves for other people's unpleasant feelings. The habitual ways we think and speak hinder communication, and perpetuate a culture of comparison, guilt/shame and punishment. Without wanting to, even people with the best of intentions generate needless conflict because of the lack of clear boundaries of personal responsibility.
In our culture, we are taught to stuff emotions, to “suck it up” and “be tough” -- we value the intellectual mind while minimizing the sensory information from our bodies. We are often driven to be “selfless” in our giving, to give even when we don’t have resources available, and that our "needs don’t matter;" as a result, we create long lists of expectations of others that bring stress in relationships, all the time we experience disappointment, resentment, and anger without spaces to be heard and understood -- eventually leading to some form of violence to ourselves or others. Over time, this pattern repeats itself until something breaks.
Our own “inner critic” has a tremendous impact on our mood, and we aren’t taught tools for dealing with them. At work especially we are encouraged to wear a mask to pretend everything is okay even when it’s not. Conflict arises when different positions are expressed, people’s emotions get triggered and usually blame others for them. The loudest voices and bigger titles usually win. It isn’t safe to be real; instead we are encouraged to be “nice.”
A New Paradigm:
The inner practice of Nonviolent Communication (NVC) invites us to take personal responsibility for our thoughts, judgments, feelings, needs and to make clear and doable requests. We learn processes for translating our judgments into the heart of our experience. By getting clear on our feelings and needs, we find inner peace, clarity and sense of empowerment.
Communities and organizations that practice NVC have enough emotional safety that difficult conversations happen more frequently with better outcomes.
Universal human needs/values, which are the heart of NVC, include personal needs (e.g. autonomy, mastery, honesty, adventure) as well as interpersonal needs (e.g. caring, consideration, collaboration, community, equity, reciprocity, and forgiveness). Needs are often confused with strategies (what we leverage to meet our needs), resulting in conflict.
This simple -- yet powerful shift in our perspective and habits creates groundedness, self-empowerment and choicefullness -- replacing our tendencies to react impulsively. From a place of self-connection, we are at peace and better able to make choices that contribute to fully living.
NVC is a non-judgmental paradigm of relating that includes introspection, deep listening with empathy, and honest expression. NVC was started by Marshall Rosenberg, PhD in the 1960s. Today, NVC is taught around the world, and has been applied in a wide variety of contexts, including business and nonprofit settings. Formal studies have begun to document the benefits of NVC, which include organizational effectiveness, increased efficiency, and support for individual well-being.
About the 10-week Series:
We will meet as a group once a week for 1.5 - 2 hours. Sessions typically will start with self-connection practices, followed by Zoom breakout rooms of 2 people for everyone to check-in. After re-connecting in the larger group, we'll dive into various self-connection practices based on NVC -- there's a combination of structured learning and improv learning through large room and small breakout room practices. Finally, we close out the group with a "check-out" of how we're feeling after spending time together. After closing the core session, a smaller group spends another 30 minutes of unstructured discussions and Q&A.
- The presentation slide PDF is sent to participants at the beginning of the session, and available for download
- Sessions are recorded and available to registered participants through the series webpage
- All registered participants will have the opportunity to practice independently with others through a rotating practice buddy system (1 or 2 calls per week for 30 minutes)
- Optional homework is assigned each week
- All registrants in the United States will receive a PDF of the Earth-Rooted Heart-Canvas (an interactive emotional compass)
Learning Objectives of 10-week Series:
- Cultivate wholeness practices (four facets of the self)
- Recognize when you're triggered into unconscious reactions
- Identify your types of unconscious reactions
- Discover strategies to interrupt reactions
- Make conscious choices to take personal responsibility of thoughts, judgments, feelings, needs
- Recognize and step out of your preferred role in the Karpman Drama Triangle
- Identify the stories, judgments, implicit bias that you hold
- Translate judgmental thoughts to uncover your personal truth
- Iterate through your experiences to identify core needs/values
- Transform regret into self-forgiveness and peace
- Develop awareness and fluency of your universal human needs/values
- Develop your own daily self-connection practice to free yourself from reactivity
- Tap into your natural curiosity, creativity and insight -- listen for strategies
- Create clear-doable strategies for meeting your needs/values
Zoom link provided with registration. Zoom sessions recorded and available for registered participants through members-only webpage.
What participants would you say to someone considering registration -- that they didn't know when signing up?
- "the value of the practicing in the breakouts and with the buddies" (Mar 2021)
- "If you want to learn more about NVC and to get valuable practice while learning, this is the class for you." (Mar 2021)
- "The value in learning to recognize emotional enslavement, obnoxiousness and the VORTEX!" (Mar 2021)
- "Aside from the material, which is an accessible and enhanced summary of NVC, the real value is in practice sessions and homework buddies where you get to practice these techniques away from often volatile and loaded situations with a partner or other daily exchange." (Mar 2021)
- "It's simple, but not easy. The course provides a framework, but you have to develop the habit of not reacting in old ways." (Mar 2021)
- "Series gives some practical tools that are immediately applicable. Getting more in touch with my needs has been very helpful." (Mar 2021)
- "Its concepts break us out of the way things are usually viewed." (Mar 2021)
- "How empowering and engaging the program was even on zoom and how much personal impact can happen in ten weeks" (Nov 2020)
- "This is a highly effective approach to bringing about positive change at the the inner most level." (Nov 2020)
- "If you want to understand why conversations and relationships don't go the way you think they should go or how you want them to, you will gain tremendous insight in deeply understanding why and the tools for progressing furthering." (Nov 2020)
- "We worked progressively through understanding and experiencing processes that brought us into a deeper space of recognition around empathy, reflection and reactivity. The building of layers of practice really anchored and gave this 10 week series a chance to be a substantial ground for understanding myself and others in my life!" (Nov 2020)
- " I would encourage them to take the series because it is a great introduction to NVC, well organized, provides good practice time and empathy buddy practice and James is a clear, skilled and caring trainer!" (Sep 2020)
- "The fact that the class series takes 10-weeks is a very positive thing. It allows attendees to really assimilate the lessons of the course and begin to practice incorporating NVC in their lives little by little, which makes for a much more effective learning process." (Sep 2020)
- "I would tell them that the [NVC] book is part of the journey but the class deepens the understanding and makes it tangible for day-today practice." (Sept 2020)
- "For me, the Vortex of Submission was VERY enlightening. I tend to say Yes when I mean No, and sometimes vice versa. I learned that it is best not to get into the Vortex, And if I recognize that I am there...to exit with grace." (Sep 2020)
Note: Nonviolent Communication (NVC) is not therapy -- not a clinical service. Nonviolent Communication is a "language of life" -- reference the book with that title by Marshall Rosenberg, PhD. The purpose of this training is to provide information and practices for NVC self-connection. While you're invited to bring real life triggers, we will only work with feelings of intensity 6 or less out of 10 (being the most intense). Participants are responsible for their own personal safety. This series could be helpful if accompanied by a guide, or counselor.
About the facilitator:
James Prieto is a nature enthusiast, author and Certified Nonviolent Communication (NVC) Trainer, apprentice in the Animas Wild Mind Training Program (WMTP). James guides individuals toward connection through personal development coaching, by facilitating NVC, along with “Wild NVC” and “Wholistic NVC” nature-based offerings which integrate with Wild Mind. He’s passionate about the intersection of Animas Valley inspired work with NVC as a way to contribute to Earth elder Joanna Macy’s “Great Turning” and Thomas Berry’s “Great Work.”