Increasingly, it seems more people are under the impression that they are disconnected and alone. Others believe aliens are watching them. We probably can't help the ones aliens find so interesting. But if you feel alone, there is hope.
The language we were trained to use encourages separateness
It begins with being discouraged from knowing ourselves and shaming. We are constantly telling each other how to feel. "You must be so proud!" "Show Grandma how much you love her." "How dare you say such a rude thing!?" "It's nothing to worry about." "Get over it!" "Don't be sad."
What if we lived in a world where if we ask a person how they are doing, they can at least identify their feelings? "I'm frustrated." "I pooped in my pants and I feel embarrassed and gooey." "I miss my puppy."
But, ask what need is not getting met and you will probably get a blank stare along with, "Are you going to eat that last slice of pizza?"
We often even confuse what a need actually is. I'm talking needs as in respect, connection, security, and choice. These are not necessarily survival needs. We could call them "wants" or "motives". I see them as usually corresponding to values. Check out this list to get a more clear idea of what I mean here by needs:
In every-day communication (with ourselves and others), rather than seeing needs, we may identify strategies (usually actions) that we believe will change our situation or address our needs. We call these strategies things I need to do, thus the temptation to skip the real need by responding with something like, I need you to kiss my cheek and call me Gypsy Sponge Buttercup. The need in that situation is actually for connection and/or reassurance.
The problem with jumping straight from feelings to strategies by skipping needs is that true understanding, practice of needs recognition, and a chance at attaining deeper empathy, are lost. So we walk around in a fog, bumping into each other, making small talk, farting out of our mouths, trading information, and even solving problems, but, we are only scratching the surface of our mirrors. We still feel misunderstood and alone.
You have the power of Grayskull
Every person has the power right now to contribute to strengthening and spreading the glue that connects us all. That glue is empathy. You start with yourself, learning new things about your favorite person, dusting off important parts of your inner self that you forgot exist. Also, it helps to floss after every meal.
That empathy stuff sounds tasty. How do I get some?
It isn't necessarily easy to just instantly have more empathy or instantly show more empathy. Unless you send me bitcoin. But, there are tools that make it easy to build your empathy muscle. One such tool is Nonviolent Communication (NVC), a Language of Life by Marshall Rosenberg, PhD.
What happens when you increase the strength of your empathy muscles?
- You get better at identifying your own values, feelings, and needs. This leads to a greater understanding of self, which is the key to understanding others. And... better sex.
- Practice of authenticity and courage. This leads to increased trust, deeper interactions, stronger connections, and getting more of what you want in life. Including better sex.
- You are practicing and spreading acceptance of people having different values! This leads to more peace in your life. Which could lead to more sex with real people.
- You will be right more often. Moral judgements are the same as pronouncing a universal truth. For example You are selfish! is a moral judgement and the response, "Oh You obviously didn't know I contributed five years of my life building a school in Albania for Kids So Retarded They Aren't On Facebook. The screwed up kids in that village love me and would grunt and squeak in harsh disagreement with your evaluation of me." There is always another point of view. No man or group of men is qualified to judge you. Only you truly know your worth. In bed.
- You increase your sense of personal responsibility by thinking/saying, "I have a personal distaste for Transvestite Midget Clowns and I accept them." instead of "Wearing Elvis masks with luxurious blonde wigs, lingerie, and roller skates is wrong because other people think so." A byproduct of taking responsibility is that you are increasing your power potential. Which may make sex better, especially in a zero gravity environment.
- Being an example, you contribute to overall peace in the world. People who deeply understand themselves tend to automatically feel compassion for others and are not easy to dominate! A strong and compassionate nature stands out. People will notice and want this for themselves. Which could potentially increase the chances they might possibly consider thinking about inviting you into their beds.
Gee golly! How do I get started?
You can learn NVC in five minutes and it takes a lifetime to master. Start by getting the book Nonviolent Communication, A Language of Life by Marshall Rosenberg, PhD. Then read it. Then read it again. The audio version is good but I see it as a supplement for the "real" booky type book. Also, check out some of the animations and other articles I create. Oh and pass this on. When you spread the word about empathy, you are changing the world for the better.
You can get the book here:
Stay tuned because I'm writing a supplementary book on this!
A card game for learning empathy
Finally, I've created a card game with the purpose of having some fun with rewiring our brains to be more empathetic. You can order it here:
Stay tuned. I'm working on a version for children.