Vika Miller | Thriving Life

NVC Essentials

We all have our “NVC story” — how we discovered NVC, and what our reaction was in the moment that we “got” what NVC makes possible for our human connections.

The essential elements of NVC are relatively simple:

  • Life is about thriving, and the only thing anyone is every doing, is trying to expand their well-being … even when our efforts are tragically or even absurdly ineffective
  • When we’re thriving, we feel happy, and we have access to all that is best in us — our capacity for creativity, acceptance, generosity, patience, etc. all expand, the more we thrive
  • Our feelings point to whether what’s happening is nourishing or diminishing our thriving; feelings are universal among all human beings
  • Our needs are the pathways we travel to nourish and sustain our thriving; needs are universal among all human beings
  • Strategies are ways to meet a need, and (especially in the USA) we often confuse strategies (e.g., money, property, positional power) with needs (e.g., autonomy, security, authentic power)
  • The stories we tell ourselves (our points of view, interpretations, assumptions, expectations, evaluations, judgements, etc.) are not the same thing as “what happened” (“reality” or “observations” or, for some of us, “the data”  😀 )
  • Some of the stories we tell ourselves support our thriving, and some of them don’t
  • Each of us is ultimately responsible for our own thriving.  As social beings we need the contributions of others to thrive, but we don’t have a right to any specific kind of support at any specific time from any specific person
  • The essence of respect is recognizing and honoring others’ right to nurture their own thriving using whatever strategies work best for them … even when their choices don’t contribute to our own thriving (either in the moment, or in general)
  • Most of our difficulties with others arise either over differences in our stories, or differences in the strategies that best meet our needs


And as you know, the minute we begin to explore this territory, things begin to get quite a bit more complicated:

  • We find our longing to connect with others, the pain we carry from past failures to connect, and our passion for the transformational power of NVC can make our attempts to use NVC in our lives a source of annoyance or even upset for the people around us
  • We discover that we have all kinds of limiting thoughts, stories, and beliefs that filter and distort the information we’re able to take in … and that we either aren’t aware of many of these thoughts, stories, or beliefs because they are the “water we swim in,” or we fiercely hold onto them as part of our habitual survival strategies, even though they no longer serve us
  • We discover that a lot of our most painful feelings are tied to unresolved pain from our past — needs that we didn’t even know we had, that have gone unmet for a long time
  • We find it heartbreakingly difficult to tell what parts of our current pain with others is a response to present-moment unmet needs (that we need to address with the other person), and how much is a reaction because old, unresolved pain from our past has been stimulated by the current situation (pain that we need to address by doing our own inner healing work)


If you long for clear, effective guidance through this rich, challenging, and transformative territory … if you long for the healing power and promise of NVC to be more fully expressed in your life … you’ve come to the right place.

Visit here to dip your toe in right now, or click here to explore all the learning options we have to offer you.

You’re welcome to join us for this deeply fulfilling, restorative journey within the warm embrace of a compassionate community of like-hearted others.

We are a fiercely gentle stand for each of us to claim and live our birthright of thriving … together.

With tender care for us all,