Introduction to the Basic Model of Nonviolent Communication: Expressing Yourself with Honesty:

The essence of Nonviolent Communication (NVC) begins with me honestly expressing how I am without blame or criticism:

When I see (hear) _______________,
I feel ___________
because I am needing (wanting) ________________.
Would you be willing to _________________.

The four blanks are filled in with observations, feelings, needs and requests, defined as follows:


The concrete actions I am observing (seeing, hearing, remembering, imagining) that are contributing (or not contributing) to my well-being: "When I see ( hear, remember, imagine)..."


How I am feeling in relation to these actions "I feel (am experiencing)..."


My needs (wants, hopes, desires, wishes, expectations, thoughts or values) causing my feelings: "because I am needing (wanting, hoping, desiring, wishing, expecting, thinking, valuing)..."


Clearly requesting concrete (doable) actions that would contribute immediately to my well-being (without demand or coercion):
"and would you be willing to ..."

When I see your toys scattered around the living room, I feel irritated, because I am needing order. Would you be willing to come inside and put your things away?

When I see you out of your seat, I feel annoyed because I am needing order and respect. Would you be willing to tell me what you heard me say?

I have been waiting ten minutes for a chance speak at this meeting. I am feeling distressed because I want to share too. Could you pause right now so I may say something?

When I heard the passage you just played, I felt scared about the upcoming concert because I am wanting harmony and order. Would you be willing to get some help from your teacher this week in the preparation of this passage?

When you said "Take out the trash!" I still don't feel the love. I am needing some understanding around this matter. Would you be willing to tell me what you are feeling and needing regarding this?

Extending the NVC Model:

Connecting Empathically with Ourselves
Connecting Empathically with Others

NVC Model
The 4 Components of NVC (.pdf)
Violent Communication

Last updated 31 August 2006

Copyright © 2006 by Duen Hsi Yen, All rights reserved.