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Belonging – The Needs’ Year (Week 21)

Belonging – The Needs’ Year (Week 21)

I'm standing in the doorway to my room. I see that in the kitchen there are some people involved in a lively conversation. They laugh and enjoy each other's company. I’m aware that at this moment I am not part of the circle of community, I am just an observer. And...

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Cooperation – The Needs’ Year (Week 20)

Cooperation – The Needs’ Year (Week 20)

After the young man broke the door open using the crowbar, me and Anni carried the table into the apartment. Then a couple came carrying a mattress and behind them a person with a chair. While the adrenaline was still pulsating in my veins, someone put a new lock on...

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Honesty – The Needs’ Year (Week 19)

Honesty – The Needs’ Year (Week 19)

"Maybe I should say he hurt me when he went to that NVC trainer instead of me? Or maybe I should say he has to talk to me before he talks to anyone else?” During a workshop at one of my first NVC festivals, two people had a conflict. One party of the conflict suddenly...

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Empathy – The Needs’ Year (Week 18)

Empathy – The Needs’ Year (Week 18)

She looked at me with an appearance that many would interpret as annoyed. With her arms crossed, she leaned back frowning and waited for me to continue talking. We were both participants of EuroLife (a two year programme led by Robert Gonzales) and a small group had...

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Peace – The Needs’ Year (Week 17)

Peace – The Needs’ Year (Week 17)

“I'm not sure, Eva, if you are satisfied with the solution… Are you?” I had just undergone an hour of group processing during my first NVC workshop. Some of the participants in the course had been involved in a conflict. With the help of the workshop leader, those...

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Choice – The Needs’ Year (Week 16)

Choice – The Needs’ Year (Week 16)

I was 15 years old and it was time to choose a high school program. Back in those days, there were not as many programs to choose from as there are nowadays. I was interested in photography and had managed to find a high school with that subject as a specialisation....

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Autonomy – The Needs’ Year (Week 15)

Autonomy – The Needs’ Year (Week 15)

I’m sitting and writing a test in physics. It’s a hard problem and I'm looking for a suitable equation in the formula book. Without a word, my teacher steps forward and slams the book in front of me. I look up in surprise (I was not aware that we were not allowed to...

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Dignity – The Needs’ Year (Week 14)

Dignity – The Needs’ Year (Week 14)

“Damn it, Jocke! You're the best friend I have. I love you!" My friend was very drunk and I was a sober person during that period of my life. I felt embarrassed and mumbled something in response, trying to avoid the discomfort. He obviously wanted contact and I myself...

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Meaning – The Needs’ Year (Week 13)

Meaning – The Needs’ Year (Week 13)

A few years ago, I rented a working space with some other people for a while. Once a month I gave an introductory lecture to NVC. Each time there was a varied number of participants, sometimes as many as 20 people. At one occasion, only a single person came. After a...

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Harmony – The Needs’ Year (Week 12)

Harmony – The Needs’ Year (Week 12)

An association that comes to mind when I think of the need for harmony is a Buddhist monk sitting in silent meditation up in a mountain monastery. The wind is blowing, everything is still, all movements are slow. Life seems calm, simple and predictable. The lack of...

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Trust – The Needs’ Year (Week 11)

Trust – The Needs’ Year (Week 11)

"We will compensate for the damage!" The words came out of me without a second thought. I was one of the organisers of last year's European NVC Summer Festival and a few of the children had gone berserk. An armchair was destroyed. The pool table was broken. The place...

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Mourning – The Needs’ Year (Week 10)

Mourning – The Needs’ Year (Week 10)

A few weeks ago I heard that one of my oldest friends had died because of a stroke. At first I became mute and cold. We shared our time intensely for a few years during the second half of the 80's. After that, we didn’t meet often, but occasionally, with a few years...

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