Tag Archives: Needs

Evaluative Experience Words, not Feelings



Word map of feeling words mixed together with evaluative experience words & value words sometimes mixed up in sentences as words that one feels 

At  Speaking Peace workshops we introduce words that are sometimes mistaken as feelings.  These words are actually evaluative experiences that are added in our statements after the words, “I feel…..,”  or “I felt….” Our workshop exercise is to identify the true emotion and consider the unmet need creating these feelings.

An example is the word betrayed.  I feel betrayed is an incorrect use as betrayed is not a feeling.   It describes an experience.  The feelings one might feel may be hurt, downhearted, wretched, devastated, discourages, lonely and more (see photo above for more).

Once true feelings are named our speaking peace process is to look at the unmet value needs that make be causing these feelings. These could be the need for:  respect, honesty, consideration, to matter, trust, support and more (see photo for more).

Consider our Speaking Peace courses and workshop!  Learn more about how to connect with more clarity, understanding and empathy!


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by Renee Lindstrom

Awareness Through Living Mentoring Programs Available:

1st Level – Getting Started (Introduction & Pattern)
 2nd Level – Getting Intouch (Experiencing & Connection)
 3rd Level – Integration (Embodiment)

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by Renee Lindstrom, GCFP @ Inside Awareness,  Living in Natures Love Blog
Renee Lindstrom Live
Copyright 2007 – 2020 Renee Lindstrom, GCFP

Labyrinth Educational Workshop for Children

#peacefocus & #earthfocus in schools! Labyrinth Workshop @ Brentwood Bay Elementary during World Children Summit on Peace and Nature event in May, ’15.  Explored labyrinth petrogylphs, designs, leadership in walking a labyrinth that reflects universal values and emotions from met and unmet needs. Introduced universal values with Ambassador of Peace Pictures, 86 children from 86 countries art on peace.   Favorite labyrinth – fingerprint!


Conflict – getting InTouch definition

When I went on line to read the definitions of the word conflict I found the focus to be on analyzing the experiences versus understanding the source of the behavior.  As well,  there was only focus on negative behavior.   getting InTouch’s definition is quite different.  It is not written from the perspective of someone’s opinion and (t/pr)eaching, but  written for understanding, learning and integration of one’s own interpretation of it!  The focus shifts inward for understanding and away from looking outside at external explanations.  After-all, how can you integrate an analysis into your habitual behavior to change it?  You can’t!  You need the steps for change.

getting InTouch definition:

The term conflict is an evaluative expression of a reactive experience.  It begins with perception that is filtered through opinions and beliefs which create emotion that results in a reaction or action.  Conflict is a label to name an experience.  It is not limited to negative experiences.  Conflict occurs when there is  an interruption to one’s ordinary experience in the moment.  It is not the resulting behavior.  It is one’s unique *perspective and emotions that arise with met or unmet needs that then is followed by the action taken to meet that need.  This is then what creates conflict for others.

*Our perspective and emotions are unique to us and learned from our own personal background of learning, faith and family history.  No one else has the same unique perspective.
  • Simple examples that all happened while writing this post:

1.  Conflict between two people:

My daughter interrupts my work to ask me my opinion about a program we watched the night before and when I share  my opinion she raises her voice and tells me I am wrong. Feeling impatient I simply cut her off and say, “Forget it, I am not having this conversation now!”  My conflict is that my needs for ease and peace to focus on my work are not being met and I am frustrated.  We do not have a connection as neither of our needs are met!  She interrupted me to have a connection herself and when she didn’t agree with my interpretation my resulting reaction would create pain for her.  Her need would not have been met and there would be consequences.  She’s hurt and angry.

2.  Inner conflict and conflict between two people:

The same daughter interrupts me later to give me affection and we hug.  I have a need met for connection and I also have a need to focus on my work.  Therefore I experience a conflict in the moment of these two sets of needs.  I feel loving and rushed at the same time.  She may feel disappointed and confused at not having my full attention yet also had her need for touch is met.

3.  Conflict with connection:

My daughter is dancing while I am working and I stop to watch.  I smile at the pleasure I am feeling and she comes over for a soft hug and we connect in a warm and joyful way.  I still have a need to continue to work yet in the moment connecting with her was a greater need.  She responded and her need was met in the moment.

Conflict happens at the level of perception and experiencing the emotions, followed by the actions we take (or not take) to met our needs.  

Imagine if we began to learn our behavior and stopped analyzing and judging it!  We’d be the change we want to be in the world!

Renee Lindstrom – 10/27/13

For a healthy society ~ on labeling, diagnosis and perscribing

An article caught my attention that originated from  a parent’s question.  It included responses from the community.

Reading the responses I found myself surprised and then shocked as the replies to the questions did not connect with the original letter writer.  Those responding talked at her and identified her actions as problems in a way that  did not  meet my need for consideration.  What I read was generalizations and identification of the parents actions as being  problems through the letter writers personal opinions including;  judgement, diagnosing, prescribing and giving advise.

For me, what was missing was the piece that made sense on a behavioral   level that would create a feeling of  relief  on all levels of my understanding not just my mind.  Therefore rather than deepening into a shared connection to what I was reading,  I was struggling with what it was bringing up for me.

I felt frustrated and annoyed reading these letters as all I took away from it was my thought that they were meeting their needs for expressing and sharing their professional opinions.  I felt a deep sadness at the same time imagining the experience of the questioner reading these answers that sounded like a lecture and being told what to do.  I recognize how I would like   the support to be simpler, personal and emphatic.  I would have enjoyed reading was how both the parent and child had different and conflicting needs.  I didn’t read any steps and examples for sharing how to identify these two sets of needs  and move forward with the child hearing back they where deeply cared for.

Imagine the personal power for the parent to connect in to was was important to them, not the action they themselves took.   Let’s give  parents tools to relax and guide their children not rules to break themselves!    Followed by the gift of knowing what need the child was meeting so the parent could realize the child’s action was to meet that need.

For a healthy society ~ Defining bullying

I would imagine that Dr. Marshall Rosenberg, author of Nonviolent Communication, would tell us that bullying is a, “tragic expression of unmet needs!”  The questions then become:

  1. Do we even know that we have needs?
  2. Can we identify them?
  3. Can we share them so that they can be heard by others?
  4. Are we making the type of requests that will increase the chances of getting them met?

Awareness Education against Bullying: My Perspective

I wanted to share my perspective on bullying with you.  I believe change can happen if we culturally begin to shift our long-term focus from first aid solutions for justice and begin to look at the root causes of bullying together with a  commitment to educate the parents and educators in our children’s lives.  
Our children learn through a process of observing what those around them are doing and mimic it.  We call this modelling.  Parents and educators do not teach a child how to roll over, sit up and come to stand as they develop movement which tells us that we (wo/man) have the ability to learn through experience and observation.  Speaking even begins with hearing those around them and babies first words are the most important ones to them like mommy or daddy.  Therefore the relationships they see around them are their sources for taking in information and learning.
As a parent myself and now sharing programs for educators and parents, what I know to be a commonly shared experience is in this statement, “We are not trained to be parents.”  I would like to add we are not trained in the art of honest expression and skills of listening.  Therefore it is my opinion that we aren’t developing healthy, understanding relationships.
Imagine for a moment a child who has met their own need for play together with a rushed parent who wants them to do something different from what they are doing, like go to bed.  How does the parent phrase it and how does the child receive the information from their parent?  Would the child hear what they are doing valued in any way?  This step is usually overlooked by busy parents, yet imagine what’s going on for the child who’s needs are not being recognized as being separate from the parents and who isn’t able to express it yet.  

As parents we may think children are demonstrating poor behavior when they are simply trying to  demonstrate and express their needs. Parents and educators have power over children in our current culture.  Power over simply means hierarchical.  Think about our organizations, business and western world in general ~ hierarchical models.

We are teaching our children dominance through existing structures without including the development of skills for understanding their own behavioral process.  Our culture lacks the speaking literacy for a developing child to understand and connect to what is being said in the way that they perceive information.  We receive information through our senses of feeling, seeing, touching, tasting and hearing sounds. Now imagine hearing the use of  feel in a sentence that does not accurately describe any feeling at all or misuses words to describe feelings.  Some simple examples:

  • I feel we need groceries.     (Replace, I think instead of I feel)
  • I feel you should go and play.   (Replace, I think instead of I feel)
  • I feel your brother needs to have a sleep.   (Replace, I think instead of I feel)
  • I am feeling unheard when you ignore me.  (unheard is not a feeling, replace with sad) 
  • I feel safe when you don’t run ahead.  (Safe is not a feeling, replace with calm) 
These are common sentences in our relationships.  Now imagine two or more people trying to have a conversation and not being able to connect.  First without true use of feeling words there are no words that creates an empathetic understanding (true sensory awareness words that the other person can connect to with ease).  Second, if there is not a common point of understanding such as a value that they can perceive without judgement, there will be confusion or they will take it personally resulting in a reaction.  For example: 
  • Bullying is bad. (Replace with ~ I believe if we are not sharing our common needs for kindness, consideration and acceptance that our relationships will be violent.  
  •  You’re a bully. ( Replace with ~ When I see you post pictures of bleach to Amanda’s RIP facebook pages,  I feel rage and disbelief as I have a need for kindness and consideration for Amanda’s family and friends.  
  • We have a rule of no bullying.  ~ We have a common need’s in our relationships for dialogue, listening, cooperation, consideration, understanding and have agreements for trying to meet these needs.
It is my perspective that by shifting our focus towards daily conversations that have individuals taking more personal responsibility for understanding their own reactive state it will shift the focus from taking it out on others in unconscious and habitual behaviors.  For adults, it more difficult to learn after years of learning how to run away and protect themselves.  For children, it’s easy.  It will take the adults learning it and practicing it in order for children to change.

Therefore it is adults committing to learning what it is they want their children to learn first:

  • How to express what is alive in them truthfully.
  • To become aware that their child is meeting their own needs and that those needs are different from the adults and to shift into valuing those needs mutually, simply by acknowledging them.  (Children do not want to be invisible and think about it: ~ adults discuss their process with their partner/friends, etc. who do children have to process it with ~ no one!  Therefore imagine what is going on inside the child – isolation, feelings of being alone, not seen, not heard, not valued, not cared about)
  • Value based communication and leadership
  • Feelings literacy
  • Needs/values literacy
  • Listening Skills (listening without trying to fix it, without interruption and how to reflect back that the child sees that regardless, they are beautiful)
  • Making concrete requests that have specifics that are doable – not vague.
Rather than talk about it, I hoped to give you some experience of what I believe is important for our culture of learning how to create kids that are mediators in the moment conflict first arises.  Imagine a child being able to understand what is going inside themselves while at the same time understanding what is going on for the other person who’s behavior is violent.  As soon as they have basic skills they will be able to identify that it is not about them at all and about what is going on in the person being violent.  This is the shift we want.  From there they will have choices in how they respond meeting their own needs and not that of the person being violent.  It will affect the balance of the victim/bully and the bully will have no power over them.  
Renee has been developing programs in Education for consideration by value based leadership organizations that are now being presented.  For a peek at this development go to link @   http://supportingnonviolentcultureineducation.wordpress.com/
Let’s keep the conversation going!

Part four-in becoming friendly with anger deepening the needs consciousness

Part four in this series may be for those who have already established a practice in recognizing needs consciousness and/or working with a facilitator.   If your new to the practice and this next part is confusing, go back to the first four parts and enjoy working with developing your practice.

In exploring naming your personal needs as described in part two of this anger series  you will with more practice develop a choice for naming the first set of needs that come up or you can take another step.  This is the step that this article will focus upon.

The first choice to stay with the first set of needs that encourages and feelings and needs dialogue.  This will support you to connect with the other party and share what is going on for you.  An example,  I was late for a doctor appointment and as my doctor entered the office she stated that she was frustrated because her need was for being on time.  She did state her feelings and her need and I could empathize with her yet I wasn’t connected, so to establish one it would have taken us into a dialogue.

To take her sharing to a deeper connection she could have stayed with her needs a moment longer and then connect to the new feelings coming up .  This may have allowed for another set of needs to come to the surface.  For example,  “I am concerned for the loss of being punctual and respecting my other clients time when you arrive 15 minutes after our agreed upon time.”   Had she mentioned this to me I would have had an instant connection that didn’t startle me and one that I could stay with and be authentic immediately back in my expressions of regret.

This step of the practice is then to add another level to identifying your feeling and needs.

1.  After identifying your unmet needs, stay with it for a few moments and notice if new feelings come up.  Sometimes there may be sadness at having these unmet needs and if you open to this your may find another need arise that you are more connected with.  This is usually the one that if you express to the other party that they can hear with more understanding and clarity and not hear any blame or shame.