"Please do as I request, only if you can do so with the joy of a little child feeding a hungry duck." (Listen to him say this on this .mp3 audio file)
In the case of the first four videos (which I made) I could restate this as:
"Please do as I request, only if you can do so with the joy of a little child feeding a hungry goose/a school of hungry fish/a pair of birds/a flock of birds!"
Rosenberg further clarifies the meaning of a request (also on the .mp3 file):
Please do not do as I request if there is any taint of fear of punishment if you don't.
Please do not do as I request to buy my love, that, is hoping that I will love you more if you do.
Please do not do as I request if you will feel guilty if you don't.
Please do not do as I request if you will feel shameful.
And certainly do not do as I request out of any sense of duty or obligation.
I like to remember these guidelines using the word "FOG." In other words, don't do anything out of fear, obligation or guilt, or you are going to be living life in a fog!
There is a difference between a request and a demand.
gets us into the "now"
contains an immediately doable action
asks for a positive action (ie. what I would like, not what I don't want)
offers a choice to fulfill it or not (otherwise, it's a demand)
Marshall Rosenberg tells a story about how his children taught him invaluable lessons on demands:
"I learned, however, that I could make all the demands in the world but still couldn't make the children do anything. This is a humbling lesson in power for those of us who believe that, because we're a parent, teacher, manager, our job is to change other people and make them behave. Here were these youngsters letting me know that I couldn't make them do anything. All I could do was make them wish they had-through punishment. Then eventually they taught me that anytime I was foolish enough to make them wish they had complied by punishing them, they had ways of making me wish that I hadn't!"
quoted from page 22 of his book: Nonviolent Communication: A Language of Life . The fundamental need that everyone has is for freedom, autonomy and choice. I see this as the basic motivating force behind all human endeavor, to attain this, for ourselves and for others. All wars are about autonomy.
Expressing requests compassionately (3 kinds):
1. a request for connection/feedback:
Would you be willing to tell me how you feel about what I just said?
Would you be willing to tell me what you heard me say?
Can you tell me what needs of yours will be met by saying 'yes' to me?
2. a request for action, for making life more wonderful:
Would you be willing to ....
Would you be willing to let me know your opinion about this?