Compassionate Communication (NVC) is a deep well. The following collection of pages is like a tool-belt/tool-sharpener combination. Understanding these concepts will help you take NVC further, sometimes quite far, in related areas.

These tools are a means to an end, rather than the end in and of themselves.  The spirit and idea of NVC is more of a way of being than an explicit tool, per se.  The tips within NVC, and its related tools like what’s on this page can be a stepping stone.  Throughout the site are other stepping stones, such as on our Freedom from Suffering page.

Setting the Stage for Success

Some simple tricks for starting a conversation within the framing of empathy and understanding. Memorize and use these scripts and you will find conversations starting from a positive direction.

Needs Shifting

Understand the why and how of our ever-changing wants. Understanding Needs Shifting, both conscious and subconscious will be like lube for your strategical gear-shift.

Reflect, Reframe, Validate

How do you take an angry person from a 9/10 to a 1/10 in less that 5 seconds? RRV!
Understand this skill to defuse tension and help people feel understood.

Enemy Image

The antithesis of empathy-focused communication. When we carry an enemy image of someone or something, we close ourselves off from better opportunities.

When No is the Beginning of a Conversation

No doesn’t need to be an ultimatum. Chances are, you’re going to make requests of people that simply won’t land.
And that is ok. In fact, it is yet another opportunity for greater connection.


Situation, Emotions, Intentions, Ends, Means. This structured approach is a helpful tool for approaching a difficult conversation, enlisting joint effort and making defensiveness more difficult.

Yes, And…

A simple phrase which, delivered with intention, disarms conflict by acknowledging a person’s view as real for them.
Understand how to use it and take your collaborative spirit to new heights.

Reading Minds

Or, ‘How to listen like a pro.’ This page will share a method for hearing people in a pure way. And how do we most intentionally speak when listening?

Even More Tools

This page is a POWERFUL grab-bag of quick-yet-sharp tools for conversations and conflicts. Level up your tool-belt with over 20 additions to empower Compassionate Communication.

Be Quiet, Be Curious, Be Genuine

How about breaking from the script? What do we do when we need to show someone, without NVC, that we are listening and care?

Intentional Speech

A separate section, Intentional Speech is nevertheless VERY related to Compassionate Communication. Within, you’ll learn how to use language to preserve power and autonomy, remove judgment, and foster accuracy and specificity.

After learning these NVC Tools, check out the resources page for this section. It’s where you’ll find a full collection of external links, videos, books, and quotes about Compassionate Communication.