Asking for More of What You Want

. March 31, 2019.

How to Make Requests using NVC

How many times have you wanted something from someone else, and been frustrated and disappointed when they don’t come through for you? An effective tool for asking for what we want from another person is to use a Nonviolent Communication (NVC). Asking for what you want can be a vulnerable thing to do, so getting clear on the specifics and approaching another person with consideration is key, and can up your chances of hearing a yes.

Communicating needs

First, pay attention to what needs of yours are being met by having your request received. Do you want understanding, support, consideration and ease? For example, saying, “you always leave the kitchen a mess! You know I make dinner during the weekdays and you have to help! You are so inconsiderate. Can’t you clean up?” is both a strong criticism and a vague demand, which most people will reject, likely responding with defensiveness and a big “NO” along with increased resentment and blame.

Instead, using NVC, make a clear observation, state your feelings and your needs (without blame), and use the acronym PLATO as a guide: Person, Location, Action, Time, and Object. In the case of the dirty kitchen, it could sound like this. “When I come home from work and see dirty dishes in the sink, food left out, and stuff on the counters (observation), I’m mad and discouraged (feelings), because having a clean and tidy kitchen makes it easier for me to focus on making meals for us. (Needs for order, focus, support). Request: Would you (Person) be willing to take on the kitchen (Location) cleaning by doing the dishes, putting the food away and wiping down the counters (Action) when you come home from work, before I start making dinner during the weekdays (Time), including using the cleaning supplies (Object) we have under the sink?”

Clear, specific, doable requests, free of criticism and blame, are helpful ways start improving your communication and getting more of what you want.

Trending

Food Insecurity Remains a Critical Issue for Washtenaw County Residents

The pandemic has shown a light on the food insecurity crisis in Washtenaw County, and is slated to get worse. Here is what’s happening and how you can help!

They Exist!: Cocktails-to-Go and Who’s Serving Them

Ann Arbor bars and restaurants serve up drinks for takeout. Here is where! With fewer in-person dining options available and the ever-present risk of COVID-19 in public spaces, it’s never been more appealing to drink adult beverages at home. Luckily, a recent change to Michigan’s liquor control laws now allows those staying in to enjoy

Matthew Dear Remixes a Mustang on New Single

World-renowned Ann Arbor-based electronic music producer/songwriter Matthew Dear has created a new single that samples the futuristic sounds of the new Mustang Mach-E!

Stages “Tear Down” Razor Fences in Prisons Across the Globe, Empower Incarcerated Artists

In Ashley Lucas’ new book, Prison Theatre and the Global Crisis of Incaraceration, we get a first-hand experience of the role that theater plays in prison and why it’s important.