A Positive Mind: an experiment in needs awareness in sculpting our mind
This course is designed partly as training and partly as a practical experiment. Through the 10 weeks we will focus on getting in touch with our needs deeply, one by one, through daily meditations.
I will provide some training to offer you some tips about how to become more aware of your needs and how to focus your mind on how you feel when your needs are met, as well as when there is a longing for a particular need to be met.
In the last decades our understanding of brain structure and function has shown that our brains remain flexible throughout our lives (within some parameters). This makes sense from an evolutionary perspective, we need to constantly be learning and adpating to changing circumstances. The process by which changes in brain structure and chemistry occur is through concrete experiences. Experience wires the brain, or creates stronger neural pathways, which in turn affect how we think and feel.
In this course, we will use this background to identify and enhance certain experiences when our needs are met, to support ourselves in sculpting a brain that is more likely to turn positive over time. This is not as straight forward as many of us would like, because our brain is built to notice and enhance what is not working and to record those memories strongly (we have an in-built negativity bias that works against our best wishes to notice the positive and to be positive).
Psychologist Dr. Rick Hanson has particularly looked at these phenomena and encourages us to "use your mind to change your brain to change your mind for the better." In this course we will be directing the focus of our attention very deliberately towards our needs and how we feel when they are fulfilled. By doing this, we will be growing our ability to both notice the positive in our life and to really take it in, so that it becomes lasting brain structure that we can rely on as a skill.
I invite you to join us for this experiment and to see how your sense of wellbeing and your relationships change throughout the weeks as a result of your daily practice.
to learn to notice and take in the positive experiences in our lives, where needs are met
to connect more deeply to ourselves
to deepen our awareness of our needs, or deep longings, and to specifically be able to identify experiences when our needs are met, allowing these experiences to sink in
to shift our negativity into a more positive mindset
to connect with gratitude and appreciation for the beauty and possibility of our needs being met in our lives
to learn to focus our attention to different aspects of our inner experience that can support us in having greater awareness of how our perception of how well our needs are met (or not)
to support us in changing ingrained habits of only noticing what is lacking or what is wrong, into habits of also noticing what is working, what is supportive, what is meeting our needs
to learn to accept and drink up positive experiences (often we pass right by them and don't allow ourselves the benefits of enjoying the positive stuff in life!)
to grow in self-compassion as we get to know what motivates us and nourishes us more and more
to grow in empathy as we understand the nuances of our universal human needs
for NVC practitioners, to deepen our needs-consciousness
Who is this for?
This course is designed for anyone who wishes to explore how needs feel inside them and to become more aware of all the ways in which needs get met in their daily life.
I especially hope you will join us if you have a habit of "negative thinking" and long to have more positive thoughts in your life but have thus far been unable to achieve this.
This course requires no previousNVC background. I will provide the training you need to be able to do the daily meditations. I expect we will have some people new to NVC as well as other who wish to go very deeply into needs consciousness.
My Teaching Style
My teaching approach is to vary the kinds of activities and to provide participatory experiences where the learning community can enrich each other and learn together.
This particular course has some training but it is mostly a practical course where you will get mindful meditations audios for each day.
One component of this course is presentation and training in live calls. In the live calls I will show you the way to do the meditations and the background that motivates why we are doing them. There will additionally be some discussion and question and answer time.
As in all my courses, I enjoy varying the kinds of exercises and inviting participants to contribute to the discussion with real examples and their own thoughts. Above all, I strive to create a safe and fun atmosphere where people can play and learn new skills. I hope to have fun together and I hope that your skills will imrpove throughout these 10 weeks.
Practice at home
You will get pre-recorded audios with daily meditations for you do do on your own each day. This is the core aspect of the program and the phenomenon we will be putting to the test: What happens when you commit to connecting daily with your needs and when you keep that awareness of how needs are met throughout your day?
The experiment aspect of this course is optional, but I think will be very useful to you and to me to gauge changes. I will offer a questionnaire about your perception of your wellbeing in different areas, which is to be completed before our first call, and we will fill it out again at the very end of the course. I will also invite you to take your blood pressure and heart rate (if you want to and you can get to your doctor/ GP/ Pharmacy).
I will invite you to share this information with me in all confidence, for my own learning and investigation. But I will not share your name with anyone.
I will create a summary of the results to be posted publically, but I will not link that to any one person. You will have the choice to step out of this part of the course at any time. You are in full choice and I want you to feel that you are doing it out of complete willingness.
This investigation might inform my future research and I feel so grateful that some of you are open to participating in it.
Summary of course: what you get
6 Live 90 min calls on Thursdays Sept. 1st, 15th, 29th, Nov 12, 26 and Dec
52 pre-recorded meditations about 1 need, emailed to you
Questionnaires and self-reflection
Support group: Private Facebook group access to stay in contact with me and other participants in my classes between sessions, to ask questions, share celebrations or moments where your practice didn't work as hoped. This is a chance to learn together and feel part of a learning community that is practicing NVC.
BONUS: Free access to my monthly NVC Practice Group (one 90 min call monthly) for 3 months- free of charge while you are on the course (Aug 24, Sept 28, Oct 26).
For the 10 weeks we are together, I will suggest that you join us for:
1x 2 hours live session twice a month (or slightly shorter time to watch recordings)
about 1 hour of reading and/or exercises per week
daily time to reflect on your progress in a journal
10-15 minutes of mindfulness NVC practice daily
1x 1hour practice buddy call a week (optional but strongly suggested).
The exercises can be practiced at any time, so don’t stress if you don’t get to everything in the time we are together. You can spread it out over a longer period, redo the exercises, etc.
Your engagement and practice will have a huge impact on your understanding and integration of the material- and on how the positive changes you will see. In particular, empathy, even though it is a natural human ability, requires practice to be developed further.
I will invite you to make this course work for you, and I will help you do just that. This is the type of course that you can take lightly to get some basic concepts and tips, or you can take very seriously and immerse yourself in the material and practice beyond the suggestions. It is up to you, your needs in this moment and your availability.
Watch the video
Nati Beltrán crafts her interactive communication training sessions with the flow of artistry and the precision of science. I was engaged and inspired through every minute. I learned more about scary honesty and true honesty that draws people closer together, instead of apart, than any other Nonviolent Communication or any communication course I have ever experienced. Her practical tips and learning on the body, mental and emotional levels all made it easy for me to remember and immediately apply what I learned to my priority relationships. And it worked! Nati is a gifted teacher of communication that connects! I recommend wholeheartedly to grab the chance to have her as a teacher or coach.
- Marie R. Miyashiro - Author, The Empathy Factor and International e-Learning Trainer, Coach and Mentor
I want to thank you for your wonderful teaching!
I'm noticing breakthroughs when I use NVC tools in conversations where I'm able to stay connected and present in difficult situations. Staying centred with self- compassion is helping me lean into the other person's feelings (without taking responsibility for them) and needs. I've been able to ask for someone's truth that was difficult for them to express, giving them a safe place with no judgment to do that. I could also listen to his truth that was difficult for me to hear by giving myself the compassion I needed in the space of one breath.
Thanks again for your wonderful gift.
- 6 month NVC in-depth programme participant
My name is Nati Beltrán. I am a Nonviolent Communication consultant, facilitator and coach.
Bright Communication provides simple and powerful communication and collaboration tools that support organisations and individuals align with and live out their values.
Better communication for a better world.