Miki Kashtan is a co-founder of Bay Area Nonviolent Communication (BayNVC) and Lead Collaboration Consultant at the Center for Efficient Collaboration. Miki aims to support visionary leadership and shape a livable future using collaborative tools based on the principles of Nonviolent Communication. She shares these tools through meeting facilitation, mediation, consulting, coaching, and training for organizations and committed individuals. Her latest book, The Highest Common Denominator: Using Convergent Facilitation to Reach Breakthrough Collaborative Decisions (2021) explores the practices and systems needed for a collaborative society. She is also the author of Reweaving Our Human Fabric: Working together to Create a Nonviolent Future, Spinning Threads of Radical Aliveness: Transcending the Legacy of Separation in Our Individual Lives, and The Little Book of Courageous Living. Miki blogs at The Fearless Heart and her articles have appeared in the New York Times ("Want Teamwork? Encourage Free Speech"), Tikkun, Waging Nonviolence, Shareable, Peace and Conflict, and elsewhere. She holds a Ph.D. in Sociology from UC Berkeley.
Are you eager to translate your vision of a world where everyone’s needs matter into a tangible reality? Do you long to discover your unique role in responding to the challenges of our times? If, so join Miki for 12 sessions that will propel you on your way!
This 5-session telecourse recording is designed to support you in learning what makes giving and receiving feedback challenging and how you can turn these experiences into opportunities for learning, connection, and effective functioning.
Unless we change our collective ways on the planet, we will one day exceed the earth’s carrying capacity. We can only address the planet's very real limits of physical resources at the level of social organization. To operate empathically is to adjust our collective social order and patterns so that resources are more widely available and everyone's needs are met no matter what their output, income, power, circumstances, etc. Can we envision a future where the system is infused with this level of empathy, before it's too late?
What would happen if you considered that time is a concept, and that it doesn't rule your life? What would it mean to make all choices based on needs and not on time? Do you obey the external rhythm of the clock over and above the internal rhythm of your life energy? This is an invitation into more responsibility, awareness, honesty, choice and freedom.
When we are transparent about our concerns, brainstorm solutions together, and look towards making a decision with the other person, we can increase understanding, partnership, and mutual support. This invites people to work on the same issue from the same direction, collaboratively seek solutions, and tap a deeper wisdom. In the end, the future survival of our species depends on this kind of active interdependence.
We can dream and wait for the day to do things differently, or we can continually take steps towards the future of our dreams as though it were here now. The future will not be significantly different from the present if we all act as if change is not possible or only possible after it's already happened. Instead, we can immediately consider everything we do as the possible seed of change beyond our wildest dreams and vision.
Our world trains us to think in terms of providing for everyone’s needs because they deserve it, earned it, or they possess the resources -- it's fair, socially just, supports equality or because people have rights. Instead, can we step outside this worldview to look at providing for everyone’s needs because those needs exist -- can we hold this basic reverence for life? Are we able to have a needs-based dialogue when such a reframe could alienate those who live in the worldview of earn/deserve?
Our ability to reduce our reliance on money, or even exit the logic of money and exchange in our own thinking, is limited by the degree of trust we have that our needs will be met without it. The more we can enter into sufficient trust, the more we can enter into a web of sharing resources -- borne from a place of love. Read on for more.
We can create processes that encourage resources (particularly money) to flow to where they are most needed. Engaging in "money piles" is one new way that can refocus conversations on real, practical problems to solve -- rather than ideological or abstract discussions about who "earned", "deserved", worked "harder", or merits more. It can tilt conversations based on transaction and obligation towards care and relationship. Read on for three examples that further illustrate how this new way of operating may even bring us closer to the type of world we all want to live in.
How much money to pay? And how much money to ask for? The supply and demand logic basically say that we ask for the most that “the market can absorb” and pay “the least that we can get away with.” We can instead, we can engage in experiments that focus on connecting to and satisfying needs. We can also engage with our varying degrees of access to resources within the existing economy and consider how we want to make choices about resources, especially when we have access to power.