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    Basics for Deep Connection and Conflict Resolution:
    NVC for BIPOC

    Cultivate deep connections, practice self-expression, and live with more authentic kindness using NVC with a power & privilege awareness

  • *Note* This series is for our BIPOC/Global Majority community. If you are unsure if you are part of this community, please contact me. No one is being turned away for lack of funds.


    What if compassion, understanding, a sense of possibility, and harmony were a part of your everyday experience? Do you want to experience an environment and relationships that actually care for power/privilege differences?


    In this 8 week series, you will learn key skills and concepts to help you navigate your most meaningful and most challenging relationships. We will connect, practice skills, and have meaningful discussions that support us in various parts of our lives, including in our homes, our workplaces, and our broader communities. We are practicing to build loving relationships and de-escalate conflicts. You will get a chance to enjoy a welcoming & adaptive communal environment. After each of these 2-hour workshops, you will feel energized and empowered.


    We'll be drawing on the practices and framework of nonviolent communication (NVC) and mindfulness for this series. Whether or not you have read about either or just want a supportive environment to improve your relationships, this is a great chance to learn invaluable skills. You will have a chance to practice with others who are building their foundations of NVC with a facilitator deeply invested in global social equity.


    Attendees of past workshops have shared their increased confidence, ability, and success in engaging with meaningful and difficult conversations and relationships in their lives.

    Class topics:*

    1. Acknowledge harm without blaming others - simple tricks for generative conflict
    2. Avoid blow-ups to address conflict with compassion - Pause and exit
    3. Understand the people who judge you without feeling judged - get clear on discernment, judgments, feelings, and stories
    4. How to safely ask for what you want - making helpful requests
    5. How to prepare for difficult conversations - Getting clear on what you need
    6. Finding a plan that works for everyone - convergent facilitation
    7. Acknowledging patterns of power and privilege - exploring the invisible knapsack
    8. Hearing what others really mean when they are hurting - empathy skills

    * Class topics may change to meet various needs of participants during the series. All of the material & practices are beginner-friendly!


    Past Participants Say

    • "NVC is a skill we all need and I know a really engaging presenter that might flip your switch! Would also pitch this to a client as a possible workshop!"
    • "The sessions are a great way to practice NVC and bring ideas you've read about into action. The facilitator is experienced, insightful and respectful. The sessions are lively and can teach you how to connect authentically. "
    • "The sessions bring NVC to life in a challenging but facilitated way. The bumbling, clumsiness and knowledge gaps that make it hard for people with no or little experience of NVC to 'try this at home' are skillfully navigated in the sessions."
    • "[The trainer] is a wonderful, thoughtful communicator [themselves]."
    • "There was a situation with [my friend] where I found myself pulling out my NVC toolbox, and after the conversation she kept saying thank you, and expressing how grateful she was for HOW I was able to make her feel heard. That's what inspired her to join the session."
    • "NVC is the best!"
    • "[The workshops] helped me so much, in discovering and understanding myself, and even help me realize some gaps in some of the things I might need to learn more."
    • "If you're really looking to do effective group work, this is the place"
    • "I feel revived after the sessions, unlike after many Zoom meetings, which deplete me."
    • "[The workshops] will fulfill your needs for authentic connection, support and empathy"
    • "[This is a] warm, welcoming space but also a place to discover new aspects of yourself."

    Additional Note from Idris

    If you’ve heard me talk about Nonviolent Communication, you have a sense of how much I value this powerful approach to interpersonal relationships. I’ve found it has transformed my ability to care for myself while enhancing the quality of connections with people with whom I interact.


    Recently, I have been deepening ways of sharing NVC that not only retain NVC's power to support connection, but also add awareness of power, privilege, and equity considerations that were unaddressed when I first learned NVC.


    Over eight sessions, we’ll cover the fundamental concepts of Nonviolent Communication. And we’ll go further. We’ll learn about the ways in which some uses of Nonviolent Communication can inadvertently replicate larger societal structures that silence and disempower people from historically marginalized groups. While we explore the four steps of the basic model, we will include strategies to integrate awareness of power, privilege, and social inequities designed to decrease the likelihood that the model will perpetuate existing social inequities. We will look at ways to use Nonviolent Communication to lift up and discuss inequities when they exist, rather than contribute to silencing and erasure.


    If you’re excited about learning Nonviolent Communication in a way that can support your desire to address larger systemic inequities in addition to supporting personal change, please join me! What will we explore in the class?

    In this session & the following course, we plan to:

    • Identify what’s important in any situation
    • Enhance self-awareness and our capacity to name our experience in the moment
    • Promote fierce self-knowledge and self-advocacy
    • Strengthen our capacity to acknowledge and lean into interdependence
    • Name systemic, oppressive conditions and their internalized impacts on our communication and relationships
    • Acknowledge harm and impact in order to support healing and repair
    • Develop our capacity to listen to anyone to get to the heart of the matter, even when we disagree with them
    • Support healing and repair interpersonally and in our communities
    • Explore creative strategies for healing that are aligned with our values
    • Recognize and celebrate cultural attributes

    I’m thrilled to be offering this comprehensive approach to NVC that integrates the needs-based consciousness with a critical awareness of power and privilege.


    About me:

    Hi! My name is Idris Merchant. I have been facilitating, teaching individuals, and coaching leaders for over a decade. I have been focused on Nonviolent Communication with a power and privilege lens for the last 3 years, teaching over 70 workshops in 7 countries to hundreds of students. You can learn more about me and my work on other parts of this site.


    Regarding Accessibility:

    I am deeply committed to making these practices accessible to people who otherwise do not have an opportunity to benefit from them. You absolutely matter to me whether or not we get to work together or if this is the right class for you. I'm happy to support you in finding other resources if this feels inaccessible for any reason and whether or not you'd like to share why.


    Important Note:

    As a participant, you will be invited to provide feedback on the session. Please expect a lot of fluidity based on your and other participants' needs.


    If you have any questions or concerns, please contact me. We're wishing you well and hope to see you soon!