The Heavy Cost of Unexpressed Feelings

“Our repertoire of words for calling people names is often larger than our vocabulary of words that allow us to clearly describe our emotional states. I went through 21 years of American schools and can’t recall anyone in all that time ever asking me how I felt. Feelings were simply not considered important. What was valued was “the right way to think” — as defined by those who held positions of rank and authority. We are trained to be “other-directed” rather than to be in contact with ourselves. We learn to be “up in our head” wondering, “what is it that others think is right for me to say and do?”

-Nonviolent Communication, page 32

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