This is a collection of the various resources I often share with clients and workshop participants.
On Compassionate Communication (with yourself and others)
I am a student of Nonviolent (Compassionate) Communication, and often use NVC principles and tools in my coaching. The books and websites below are great places to explore NVC in more depth.
Nonviolent Communication: a Language of Life by Marshall Rosenberg
A powerful approach to reframing not just how we communicate, but how we receive and perceive information as it comes into us. This “method” can bring a profound shift in how we see ourselves as well as helping us communicate in ways that are much more likely to get our needs met.
Nonviolent Communication Companion Workbook: A Practical Guide for Individual, Group, or Classroom Study by Lucy Leu
A companion to the book above. Helpful particularly, I think, if you have someone to do it with, but could be a useful way to work through Rosenberg’s model by yourself.
Words That Work In Business: a practical guide to effective communication in the workplace by Ike Lassater
An excellent, practical guide to compassionate communication in the workplace. Includes lots of exercises, and many ways to ease into these new communication patterns slowly, starting with changing your internal dialogue.
www.WiseHeartpdx.org – the website of Lashelle Lowe-Chardé
LaShelle teaches nonviolent communication workshops for couples and for women, and provides coaching for couples in using nonviolent communication. She has a wonderful weekly emailed “Connection Gem of the Week,” and provides excellent free resources on this website.
www.orncc.net – The Oregon Network for Compassionate Communication
This website includes information on NVC trainings, groups and other resources in Oregon and Southwest Washington.
www.cnvc.org – The Center for Nonviolent Communication
This is the website of Marshall Rosenburg, the creator of Nonviolent Communication, and includes many great resources whether you are exploring NVC for the first time, thinking of becoming a certified NVC trainer, or wanting to find ways to support NVC work around the world. I have ordered many books from this site and have never been disappointed.
“Nonviolent Communication (NVC) is based on the principles of nonviolence– the natural state of compassion when no violence is present in the heart.
“NVC begins by assuming that we are all compassionate by nature and that violent strategies—whether verbal or physical—are learned behaviors taught and supported by the prevailing culture. NVC also assumes that we all share the same, basic human needs, and that each of our actions are a strategy to meet one or more of these needs.
“People who practice NVC have found greater authenticity in their communication, increased understanding, deepening connection and conflict resolution.”
From the CNVC Website
On Vulnerability and Shame Resilience
Brené Brown’s work on vulnerability, building shame resilience, and boundaries as ways of connecting rather than disconnecting, is powerful. You will find a good introduction in her first TED Talk, the Power Of Vulnerability. Her TED profile provides links to her TED Talk on Listening to Shame and other resources. I have found her book Daring Greatly to be challenging, inspiring and useful as I continue my own journey into being more shame- resilient and more willing and able to stand in, and share from, my own vulnerability.
On Shifting Your Relationship with Your Inner Critic
Shifting your relationship with your inner critic is one of the most powerful ways I know to create more creativity and joy in life. All of the Compassionate Communication resources listed above are useful in this process, and here are some others:
This article, by J’aime Ona Pangaea, a local practitioner and teacher of Voice Dialogue, is the best introduction to thinking differently about your inner critic I know of. There is a second article on the inner critic, by Hal Stone, also on this website. J’aime’s workshops are excellent, as is her book, The Benefits of People Who Bug You.
“Voice Dialogue is an elegant psycho-spiritual process that helps us become more aware individuals and freer from negative self (and other) judgments. For our relationships, it helps us to learn from and accept each other, as we are. It opens up our capacity to be energetically more open and connected while at the same time, have a clear sense of our individual nature. Philosophically, Voice Dialogue has natural affinity with both Jungian, Gestalt and Archetypal psychology and in a secular way, with Buddhism.” J’aime Ona Pangaia, from her website
I often use Voice Dialogue tools and framings in my coaching. J’aime is my Voice Dialogue teacher, and is located here in Portland. Her website www.voicedialoguework.com lists local trainings and includes many useful articles and other resources.
www.delos-inc.com – the website of Hal and Sidra Stone
Lots of info on the writing and teaching of Hal and Sidra Stone, who created the Voice Dialogue method (outlined on the above website, and taught locally by J’aime). The books, articles and recordings available are full of good insights about our relationships with our inner critics, with all the various parts of ourselves. However, in my experience, reading about voice dialogue is a lot like dancing about architecture – you really need to experience the facilitation process to get much out of it. The books are mostly helpful as a support to that work once you are in it.
200 Ways to Love the Body You Have by Marcia Germaine Hutchinson
Page after page after page of short exercises designed to get you in touch with the wisdom and gifts of your body and heart.
On Journaling/Writing with Curiosity
The Artist’s Way and Walking in This World by Julie Cameron
The Artist’s Way is a classic, and for good reason. Cameron writes specifically about journaling as a way to free up creativity, and has many other structures and framings to suggest for nurturing your creative impulses and building a creative life. And, her basic “morning pages” structure is an excellent one for a basic self-reflection/clarity process regardless of any focus on “creativity.” Walking in this World is a follow up, focused on “how to inhabit the world with a sense of wonder.”
Writing Down the Bones (and others) by Natalie Goldberg
A wonderful, inspiring invitation to write, and write, and write. Full of compassion, wisdom, and great writing exercises.
Writing and Health: James Pennebaker’s recommended writing exercise for redirecting how you are seeing/holding/interacting with/being shaped by particular worries or traumas. (As recommended in Redirect – the Surprising New Science of Psychological Change)
On Creating Joyful, Fulfilling Intimate Relationships Without Losing Yourself
If the Buddha Dated and If the Buddha Married by Charlotte Kasl
Kasl has a loving, lovely, and very practical approach to bringing your whole self into intimate relationships and the search for intimate relationships, and one which seems to generate good results (personal testimonial available 😉 )
Intimacy and Solitude by Stephanie Dowrick
A powerful look at the gifts of solitude in giving us ourselves, and as a basis for intimacy.
On Career/Vocation Change
Do What You Are by Paul Tieger and Barbara Barron-Tieger (They also have Myers-Briggs based books on parenting, relationships, etc.)
My favorite Myers-Briggs based book on career change, very practical and helpful. They don’t see MBPT as the be all and end all, just as a useful lens/tool. Great resource for the job search and for language for resumes and cover letters as well as being helpful in figuring out what you want to do.
Zen and the Art of Making a Living by Laurence G. Boldt
A core-values based approach to the question “what do I want to do?”
Heart of Business is “For small business owners who want to make a difference and need to make a profit.” Its focus is on “marketing” (connecting with and enrolling clients who need what you bring), but its approach is a core-values level examination of what it is for you to be of service in the world. The free exercises “Remembrance” and “Finding Your Jewel” would be useful for anyone searching for what they want to do in the world, whether they think they want to be self-employed or not.
On Energetics and Transformation
The Secret Language of Your Body by Inna Segal
Powerful tools for working with the energy in your body to identify stuckness and move through it. I use her color-work a lot in my own life.
The Enneagram for the Spirit by Mary Horsley
A nice integration (at an introductory level) to several useful frameworks – the Enneagram, the Five-Element lens of Chinese medicine, the Chakra system, moving energy through yoga poses. I like having all these basics in one place.
General – Coaching-Based and Other Useful Frameworks
50 Ways to Leave Your Karma: Freedom, Fear and the Art of Getting Unstuck by Eric Klein
A free ebook, based in meditative practices, downloadable at www.wisdomheart.org. Full of powerful reframings and invitations to let go of old ways of experiencing ourselves and the world that are not helping us. Very useful and healing for the heart.
Journey of the Universe by Brian Thomas Swimme and Mary Evelyn Tucker
A powerful telling of the universe’s creation story, with profound resonance for how we think about our own.
When Things Fall Apart (and many others) by Pema Chodron
A wise, insightful, compassion-based approach to dealing with big changes. Chodron is a Buddhist nun, but her approach resonates deeply for people from many world-views and disciplines.
The Power of TED* by David Emerald
A powerful reframing of the Victim-Persecutor-Rescuer “drama triangle” into something much more rooted in creativity. Firmly based in co-active coaching fundamentals, this is a very useful book, though it is framed in a way that may not resonate well for some people.
If the Buddha Got Stuck by Charlotte Kasl
I don’t love this one as much as I love If the Buddha Dated (see relationships resources above), but it is still a good articulation of her basic framework, which is compassionate and very useful.
Redirect – the Surprising New Science of Psychological Change by Timothy D. Wilson
A powerful, science-based book on strategies for reframing (shifting perspective) that lead to strong and useful outcomes. Wilson has identified some key strategies that do work for helping people make positive change happen, and provides important and useful critiques of a good number of “common sense” approaches that are counter-productive (including many that are in widespread use). (My only discomfort with this book is that I find Wilson a bit too focused on the importance of proving by random trials what works, and therefore on the assumption that what we want is methods that work relatively well for nearly everyone/universalize-able methods.)
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