Episode 21: Kelly Bryson: Communication as a Path to Intimacy

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Does this sound like you? "One minute we're just talking and then suddenly we're in a fight." "All I'm doing is trying to tell you my feelings and you won't listen." Meet Kelly Bryson, psychotherapist, marriage and family therapist, author of _Don't Be Nice, Be Real_, and expert in an extraordinary communication technique called "Non- Violent Communication", also known as "Compassionate Communication". Join Kelly and I as we examine the ineffective and sometimes tragic ways that people use to communicate. Discover new techniques and approaches to communicating and listening to feelings and experiences. And don't miss Kelly's two exercises to improve communication in your life. More details on this episode go to http://www.personallifemedia.com/podcasts/sex-love-intimacy/episode021-kelly-bryson-communication-as-a-path-to-intimacy.html

Transcript

Kelly Bryson: Communication as a Path to Intimacy

Announcer:  This program is intended for mature audiences only.

[Music]

Chip August: Welcome to “Sex, Love & Intimacy”, I am your host Chip August. Today’s show I’m talking to Kelly Bryson. Kelly’s quite an interesting guy, he’s a licensed psychotherapist who specializes in marriage family therapies. He’s a certified trainer for the Center for Nonviolent Communication. He’s the author a great book called “Don’t Be Nice, Be Real” and the subtitle is “Balancing Passion for Self With Compassion For Others” and he’s a contributor to a recent anthology I saw called “A Marriage of Sex and Spirit”. He’s really…all of that and a really interesting fellow and a nice guy. Hopefully, we’re going to be talking today about non-violent communication, sometimes called NVC, sometimes called Compassionate Communication. It’s a style of communication that I think…I’ve done some studies in and that a lot of people I know have done some work on and I think is sort of…in my mind is the technology for the 21st century on how to communicate without hurting, pushing away, being aggressive, being violent. It’s an extraordinary technique, so we’re going to be talking about NVC and Compassionate Communication. We’re also going to really take a look at ineffective and sometimes really tragic ways that people communicate and see if we can come up with some alternatives, and I’d like (I hope)  we’re going to talk a little bit about how to use this kind of communication in sex, in relationships, in all kinds of things that couples face. So, I’m looking forward to an interesting conversation with an interesting friend.

*BREAK*

Kelly Bryson: I think as one of the major difficulties, major problems you can say, couples have is that when they’re in pain, instead of asking for understanding, they tell the other person what’s wrong with them. What they did, what they should have done and they usually do so in terms that are exaggerative or imply blame, or imply wrongness in some way. I say just what they did, but I do so in observational language. I don’t say “You left a mess in the bathroom”, I say “You left your clothes on the floor.” So just that is a big shift. One element that non-violent communication helps us with a lot is to train us to begin thinking in these terms, is how to have empathy, how to have not just mental reflectings, know how to have impactive sensing. How to feel into what’s going on energetically with the other person. This, I’ve been told, is what makes great lovers. And of course that never makes anybody feel safe and open… “Oh NOW I’m…I’ve been in denial! That’s where I’ve been, let me come out. Now I want to make myself vulnerable and naked and trust you now that you’ve called me those names.”

Chip August: Well behind every inhuman deed is a human need. I love that.

*BREAK*

Chip August: Welcome to the show, Kelly Bryson.

Kelly Bryson: Hey, thanks Chip. It’s great to be here with you.

Chip August: Thank you. So, let’s just get right to it. I was hoping you might give me sort of an example of what kinds of things you get into that you used to communicate in one way and now NVC teaches you something different. Can you give me an example from your life?

Kelly Bryson: Oh, it’s a world of difference, really. It’s so many things I can remember. So many times when I was in a lot of pain and would have liked to have asked for my empathy directly, straight. I would have liked to have asked for some understanding about the pain I’m in and instead of doing that, I would tell the other person—I would analyze the other person since I had a degree in Psychoanalysis, and analyze the other person in certain terms, even had a whole book of names to call them called the DSM-IV. But, not very effective…didn’t serve the purpose of communication, which is after all to get heard. Instead I would trigger defensiveness, fear on the other person’s part. But since I’m learning much more how to ask for my understanding directly, which I think is one of the major difficulties, major problems you can say, couples have is that when they’re in pain, instead of asking for understanding, they tell the other person what’s wrong with them. What they did, what they should have done and they usually do so in terms that are either exaggerative or imply blame, or imply wrongness in some way. Compassionate or non-violent communication is amazing in this sense is that, especially in the intention but also in the wording, we never imply wrongness no matter what. There’s no need to imply wrongness. Wrongness never helps us get heard better. So, not to say we let anything go by, if people are doing things that aren’t meeting our needs or triggering us, we make it very clear what they did, how we felt about it, what needs of ours aren’t being met, and what we would like them to do about it now. In this very second, in this very moment.

Chip August: Wait a minute, that was a good list, and I want to hear that list again. What do we tell them?

Kelly Bryson: Well, I tell them what they did, what I’m reacting to. If they’re doing something that’s not meeting my needs that I’d like to bring up. I say just what they did, but I do so in observational language. I don’t say “You left a mess in the bathroom”, I say “You left your clothes on the floor.” So just that is a big shift, to be able to observe without making a judgment or making wrong—or implying wrongness. Jiddu Krishnamurti, and English-British philosopher, said that the most difficult task in human intelligence is to be able to observe without judging. And it’s the first step in non-violent communicating. I want to say just what I’m reacting to. And then I want to bring in how I feel about it, what needs or values of mine are not being kept, and exactly what I want done in this very moment, which is an art and a science in itself especially if sometimes I want something in the future. But I want an agreement in order to set some intention now about it. How to make a present request is part of an art and science in the process.

Chip August: Now, it’s all well and good to say “describe something without making the other person wrong”, but I notice even claiming I’m observational just in tonality, you know, there’s a world of difference between “You know, I observed that you left your clothing on the bathroom floor” and (mock annoyance) “YOU LEFT YOUR CLOTHING ON THE BATHROOM FLOOR, AGAIN!” (laughing) You know, (mock annoyance) “I’M JUST OBSERVING, BUT I’M OBSERVING THAT YOU DID THIS…AGAIN!” So how does one learn how to stop having that edge?

Kelly Bryson: Well, now you’re bringing in another element, which is consciousness of the intention I’d like to be having when I’m expressing myself. You bring in 2 important elements: one is “I sometimes do have a charge on it...I am frustrated as heck about it”…and I want to bring that in, and I want to bring that in cleanly and directly. I want to say “I’m frustrated as hell.” The other part is the intention. I want my intention to be to get heard, to be connected with, to be understood, and not to make wrong. Because if I’m still in this belief system in my thought world, and I still have the intention to hurt you or make you wrong or make you guilty, it doesn’t matter what technique you’re using. You can do the process of non-violent communication out the kazoo, and you’re still going to come across with that blaming, angry energy. So, this helps in 2 ways: it helps remind me of what my intention is. My intention is to get heard, connected, to get understanding. It’s often to get understanding of some pain going on with me, and perhaps to negotiate our needs so that we can create a win-win. But then the other thing is that I also want to stay conscious that my intention is never to make wrongs, just to simply get heard. And then to negotiate my needs. I do want to get behaviors to change and things, but I want to do so not by inspiring an energy of fear or guilt, because if I do that I can get you to pick your clothes up by using fear tactics or guilt tactics or whatever, but I’m going to pay a heavy cost if I get you to do that. So the intention of non-violent communication is two-fold: one, to create a quality of connection that makes people want to give, naturally, willingly from their hearts. And then to get that giving to happen so that there isn’t a cost or residue, to get natural giving to occur back and forth to each other, not giving based on fear, blame, shame, guilt.

Chip August: So it’s your belief then that people do naturally want to give to each other? I think there are certain people listening who’ve had the experience that you know “Men just want to dominate the conversation” or “Women just want to hen-peck me”…they’re not so sure about that fundamental nature of human beings wanting to give. Are you so sure?

Kelly Bryson: For lots of reasons I would say yes because I can look at myself, and what is one of my greatest joys? It’s when I’m contributing, giving, meeting someone’s need and it really brings me joy I love it—it’s almost like a definition of love. Meeting people’s needs, there’s an energy, there’s a connection that happens when we’re meeting each other’s needs that is ecstatic. It’s joyful. It’s a true drug, it’s a high to do that. And the other thing is just my observation of people. A little example is I had some people come into my office recently—a family: little Joey, he’s like 4 and a half, he comes in and he’s crying and sniffling. He says…he’s reporting to me...I said “Joey, what’s going on?” He says “Grandma took the trash out.” (laughing) Grandma had been visiting from out of town and she took the trash out. I said “That’s upsetting to you?” He said “Yeah, that’s my job.” And the reason he felt that way is that it was something important to him, something that we wanted to do that he felt disappointed to have taken from him was because he has never been punished in his family and he has never been rewarded for doing anything. So, he’s still connected to the intrinsic love of contributing and giving. Never been coerced. This is the reason a lot of people don’t engage in natural giving because in their families they had conditional love based on punishments and rewards, so they lost touch with natural giving. So it’s kind of obscure for them now. Now it’s always “What’s in it for me?” and that’s the only thought.

Chip August: I want to pause for a moment, we’re going to take a break, give a chance to let our sponsors support us, and give a little support to our sponsors. I want to remind you listeners to stay tuned to the whole show because at the end Kelly’s got an exercise for you to do and you don’t want to miss that exercise. And in the area of sponsors, I have a new sponsor, AudiblePodcast.com. Audible’s the internet’s leading provider of spoken audio entertainment and Sex, Love, & Intimacy listeners can get a free audio book when you go to AudiblePodcast.com/love. So you go to AudiblePodcast.com/love and check out the titles. If you’re liking listening to Phil there are wonderful collections of erotica, just go to Erotica & sexuality, then there’s collections from Penthouse, there’s collections from Susie Bright, there’s one of my favorite erotic books in audio “The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty” and you get a free download, you get a free book when you sign up for the service, and it’s really cool because if for any reason you don’t like it you can cancel within two weeks so it just seems like a no-lose opportunity to check out some more erotica and some more sounds like this and you win and I win so do me a favor and go visit AudiblePodcast.com/love and sign up today. We’ll be right back.

**BREAK**

Chip August: We’re back, you are listening to Sex, Love, & Intimacy. I’m your host, Chip August. We’re talking to Kelly Bryson and Kelly is the author of a great book “Don’t Be Nice: Be Real” and he’s a teacher and a therapist and a specialist in the area of  non-violent communication or compassionate communication or NVC. Kelly, just before we went to the break you were talking a little bit, a little indirectly, but we were talking a little bit about sex and non-violent communication and I think that’s something we’re all interested in, certainly all my listeners are all interested in, so how do you see what’s sort of the common pitfalls we see in the bedroom and what does non-violent communication have to offer for all that?

KB: Oh there’s a lot. One element that non-violent communication helps us with a lot is to train us to begin thinking in these terms, is how to have empathy, how to have not just mental reflections, know how to have impactive sensing. How to feel into what’s going on energetically with the other person. This, I’ve been told, is what makes great lovers. They have that sense of it, its non-verbal a lot of it, so non-violent communication is not necessarily a verbal process, it’s one modality for non-violent communication, the other is how to have empathy. And then how to ask for what I want with an energy of suggesting that my needs are gifts…it’s a very different energy when someone expresses their need with a trust, or a “Hey you lucky dog, you get to give to me”,  versus this other kind of energy that’s sometimes called “kick me energy” which is “You don’t want to dance with me, do you?” kind of an energy. So, it teaches us how to ask with an energy of joy and invitation instead of fear and shame around our needs. And then also, how to clean up messes when they get made. Sometimes things get triggered in the bedroom, it is such a sensitive, vulnerable element, the essence is being naked in front of each other, literally. So how to clean up messes is another element that non-violent communication addresses. How to avoid messes by stating clearly, precisely, what actions I would like to take and from a certain energy. But then also when things do get triggered or when fear does come up. How can I hold the space in a way that allows us to quickly move through the hurt, the fear, the shame, pain that comes up. A little example is an example of what not to do, was—I had a couple that I worked with recently and the woman was very upset because the man, after making love, had asked for empathy sideways…what I call a “sideways request” for empathy. Not directly—“Can I please have some understanding about something that got triggered in me?”…it was indirect. What he said was, after they had made love, he says “You call that sex?” (laughing) So, needless to say she did not take it very well and was a little bit challenging for her to deal with this. (laughing) And it’s tragic because generally he’s a pretty conscious and sensitive guy and this couple’s pretty conscious, but he didn’t know how to state his observations, what he felt, what his need was and then to do this thing that I wish couples knew how to do more, which is to ask for the understanding directly. For example, if he had said that in non-violent communication after lovemaking, he might have said “You know, when you kept your eyes closed for the whole time and you didn’t look at me, I felt kind of lost, a little bit hurt, and I took it personally. A little hurt. Hey partner/dear, can you tell me what you’re hearing this is about from me? Can you just tell me what you’re hearing this about from me? I’m owning it.” That would have been a lot easier to hear than “You call that sex?” And I predict he would have gotten the empathy more likely than the other way. So that’s one of the big keys, how to ask for our empathy directly, and how make our requests directly. And also what helps is to reveal the need behind the requests. Sometimes if I just say what I want you to do—you move over here,  or you do this—and you’re not connected with the energy and the need that it’s coming from, it can sound like a demand. So I like to reveal my needs behind my requests. I might like to say “You know, I really want to feel more connected with you, would you be willing to tell me what you’ve been doing this last week or two, or these last few days. I just want to feel more connected” rather than “What have you been doing the last few days?” Because then you don’t know where I’m coming from: am I cross-examining you or am I questioning you or whatever. So, this is another element. It’s actually thousands of elements, there’s too many to get into but here’s a couple that we address in the bedroom.

Chip August: So, I’m curious about this need thing because I see clients and my experience is often the need they come in to talk to me about is not actually the need they’re here to address, that they sort of present with the thing that they can talk about and then we sort of work our way down. Is there a trick to helping people figure out what their actual need is?

Kelly Bryson: I think one part that is helpful is to practice empathic sensing with them to kind of guess for them, to feel into it and guess…are you feeling some fear around really getting your heart broken? Is that what this is really about? I do my best and then I leave it up to them to say “no it’s not that, it’s this”. So even if I guess wrong, it helps narrow it down by process of elimination to get more attuned to it. And a lot of people are not familiar with need language they just don’t think in these terms, so I’ll offer them something and we’ll see what rings true, what fits, does this feel like it’s ringing. And I can usually tell by their voice tone and how they’re responding whether they’re really feeling that connection to that need, or whether they’re just making the therapist happy…if I’m telling them what they want to hear.

Chip August: And I hear in this sort of an assumption that people’s natural state is empathetic. And again I notice that  its so hard sometimes to break through, it feels like with a lot of people the empathy has been kicked out of them by the time their adults.  They’ve had a lot of treatment that felt less than loving and less than empathetic and they put on a really thick shell…“You know, I’m not going to let anyone get to me.” Is there a way to help people sort of find that empathy again?

Kelly Bryson: The way to help them find the empathy is to give them the empathy. First of all for their shell. To not even react to it like its a wall or to judge it or make a therapist out of it…I call them “they’re pissed” sometimes (laughing) will try to break through that wall or that shell, first of all by calling it a wall or a shell. And they’ll say things like “You’re in denial!” or “You’re just hiding behind a wall!” And of course that never makes anybody feel safe and open… “Oh NOW I’m…I’ve been in denial! That’s where I’ve been, let me come out. Now I want to make myself vulnerable and naked and trust you now that you’ve called me those names.” (laughing) But no, instead what I want to do is provide, do my best empathic sensing to the wall, and I might with my energy and my words I might say something like “I’m wondering if you’re scared, I’m wondering if you want to keep safe now you’ve had so many hurts and pains in your life, you just want to find some kind of safety and this is what makes you respond this way.” So I want to not judge the wall, I want to hear what the wall is telling me. Because if people have a sense you’re not judging their wall, and you’re hearing what its saying, then they start to relax a little a let you in a little bit. Maybe they’ll allow you to give the empathy for all the hurt and the pain about all those terrible ways they were treated in their lives and if they can get the empathy to that, then it kind of heals up. And the more empathy they get, the more able they are to stay present to themselves when other people are doing the weird things, even criticizing them or having some pain in relation to them. And they’re not so quick to go into their reaction, so a part of it is what I call “Stage 1 & Stage 2 healing”. First stage is getting some empathy to the hurt and the pain of being told that their sexuality is dog-like behavior or however people were treated around that for the pain and the shame of buying into that. And then the second thing, second part of healing they need to learn how to do, is to empathize with the parent that did those things. Where were they coming from? The fear that they were coming from, the shame that they were coming from to even express those kind of things, so they can have empathy and understand that it wasn’t anything wrong with them it was their parents’ expression of their own pain probably from how they were treated in their lives. If they can do that, then they can quit taking it personally as Stan Dale, our wonderful teacher, has told us. How to do that, though is first to get the empathy for how I got triggered by it and then start to imagine, what is the other person feeling and needing behind these awful things they’re doing? In my book, I have a little section that says “Behind the most inhuman deed is a human need.” So if I can get the empathy I need for how I was treated, then I can start to imagine and see the human need that other person was expressing through their heinous and tragic strategies, whatever they were.

Chip August: Wow. “Behind every inhuman deed is a human need.” I love that. I love that. I love that. So, when you say “don’t be nice, be real”, you’re not saying “be mean, be nasty, be non-empathetic, be non-sympathetic”…?

Kelly Bryson: I’m ok with people being nice, I like people to be “real” nice.  Not the kind of nice that’s used as a stiff-arm, placating other people, people-pleasing other people. It disconnects us from ourselves. That kind of nice turns us into what I call being some of the nice dead people of the world. And I’m ok with people choosing to be nice, as long as they’re ok with being depressed. (laughing) Because it goes together, those two things. I like very much this…there’s a play called “A Thousand Clowns” with Jason Robards in it. And he says to the social workers who are about to take his nephew away to go to school, he says “Before you take him over, I want him to understand all the wild possibilities, to know when he’s chickened out on himself, to understand the subtle, sneaky, important reason why he was born a human being and not a chair, so he’ll notice when they start to take it from him.”

Chip August: It’s a great play by Herb Gardner, “A Thousand Clowns”. We need to take a short break and before we go to break I want you to know we have a new sponsor, soundspublishing.com. Soundspublishing.com delivers exceptional audio erotica…it’s real…audio erotica, I mean this is like CD’s and downloads of erotic fantasies, erotic stories, they’re professionally produced, they’re written by some Emmy-award winning writers, they’re read by real actors with very very sexy voices, and they can bring a whole lot of fantasy and pleasure to your love life and because you are a listener to my show I want you to know that we have a special deal. If you go to soundspublishing.com/offers where they ask for a promo code put in the word “love” and you’ll get 10% off on stories that are sensual, romantic, sexy, some of them are wicked, some of them are wild…they actually group their stories as Sugar, Spank, and Spice. And they’re well well named. These are things you can listen to with your lover, and maybe get an idea about how to have more fantasy in your life. So, please go to soundspublishing.com/offers, put in the promo code “love”, order up a story, order up a compilation CD, enjoy and you’ll benefit, my sponsor will benefit, and sounds like a win-win to me. We’re going to take a break right now, and we’ll be right back. 

**BREAK**

Chip August: Welcome back to Sex, Love & Intimacy, I’m your host Chip august. We’re talking to Kelly Bryson who is the author of “Don’t Be Nice: Be Real”, a wonderful book about non-violent communication or compassionate communication and we’ve been talking about what that is and what that means. Kelly, I understand you have a center in Santa Cruz mountains there. Can you tell me a little bit about your center and what you do?

Kelly Bryson: Yeah it’s not exactly in the mountains actually it’s in the foothills before. It’s only about 2 miles from the beach actually. It’s called Shangri-La Healing Sanctuary, it’s a healing biotope and we do community building, conscious community building, help create tolerant, transparent touching tribes of people. And partly because we’ve come to the belief that it takes a village to raise a relationship, it takes a village to raise a consciousness, and we need each other’s support for making it work. It’s too difficult to get into the polarization of the freedom and closeness conflicts that couples get into to be able to resolve and hold that without a strong energy, a supportive group of other people—sophisticated other people who can give the empathy to our partner for places we can’t do ourselves, to give honesty to our partner that they won’t hear from us, and that kind of thing. So I’m traveling around the country starting these communities, in Philadelphia, in Florida recently, and I come out and I teach non-violent communication and I teach what I’ll call “Tribal Technologies”, how to get these little communities going to support our love relationships and our sexual life and our spiritual life and even our financial life.

Chip August: Are these live-in communities? Are these places that people come and live?

Kelly Bryson: Not right now, at this point its network. I mean, where I am, yes we have a live-in, mini intentional community, with 5 little houses. We hold the space together for that, but when I go to Philadelphia or Florida, I help network to people that are kind of getting started…getting started, get it going so they can do what they’re going to do from that, but in Santa Cruz we just hold the space and sometimes we invite groups to our space to do a weekend retreat and they’ll stay there and we’ll train them in these different NVC and different kind of technologies that help tribes become really tolerant and supportive of each other.

Chip August: So if one of my listeners was part of a tribe already and wanted to invite you out to have you talk to the tribe and help them learn something about this, how would they get in touch with you?

Kelly Bryson: Well a couple of different ways. They could go to my website, languageofcompassion.com. You can just Google me, Kelly Bryson on the web and it’ll come up, or you can give me a call. Call 877-NO-FEARS, it’s a toll-free number. 877-NO-FEARS. My home number is 831-462-EARS, 831-462-3277 and just call me up, and we can talk about it. I also do phone sessions and things where people can call me and get coaching or I also bill insurance, we can do license therapy over the phone and such. Since we’re on the edge of commercial, I’ll go ahead and mention please you can get my book anywhere off of Amazon or Barnes & Noble, but I make more money if you’ll order it from me, directly through my website languageofcompassion.com whether it’s the “Don’t Be Nice: Be Real” or “The Marriage of Sex and Spirit”, plus I have several CD’s that you can see on my website about the basics of non-violent communication. A bunch of songs I did: compassionate warrior songs, we call them. “An Intro to Spirituality of Compassion” is another CD that I sell to people through my website.

Chip August: And listeners, I assume you know this, but if you go to the PersonalLifeMedia.com website and look up this interview there’s a full transcript of this along with links to Kelly’s site so if you don’t remember any of what he just said or you’re not in a position to write it down, you might just go to PersonalLifeMedia.com and look up the transcript of our interview and find all the links that you need. I want to also tell you on that PersonalLifeMedia.com that’s a great place to go to get text and transcripts of my show and for any of the shows from the Personal Life Media Network. That’s PersonalLifeMedia (all as one word) dot com. Also I definitely like to hear feedback, I like to hear how I’m doing, so if you would like to send me an email, you can reach me at [email protected]. We’re wrapping up the show here. I always like to ask my guests for an exercise, something that people can do at home, something that will improve their love, their intimacy, their sexuality and I warned you in advance that I was going to ask you this, this is that moment! So, Kelly you got something that people can try at home?

Kelly Bryson: I do, I have 2 things. One, I wanted to mention one more thing: and that is that all over the country there’s open practice support groups, a lot of them are peer led and free and some of them are by trainers through the Center for Non-Violent Communication organization so you can just go to CNVC.org and look up your city and you can go there. Again, yes some exercises I have two. The first one I will call “How to Give Technicolor Surround Sound Appreciation to Your Partner”. So one thing you can do is after lovemaking or after anything they’ve done for you, you can be very clear, you can get close, hold each other, look in each other’s eyes and start talking about what it is that the person did: what are you responding to. Something about the way you just opened your chest, just let that energy come up…and movement, the way you were so free in your body as we made love…and then I want to describe what the person did in some detail to make them know that I’m referring to something specific. And then I talk about what went on inside of me—just the freedom I felt, the openness of heart that I felt, how deeply I was touched on the emotional level. What goes on with you emotionally in response to what the person did. And then the third thing I talk about and I let the person know is what needs of mine were met. “Wow, it just met my need for inspiration, and ecstasy and relief, connection so deep. I felt so warm and close.” So those three things: what they did, how I felt, and what needs of mine were met, instead of just saying “Hey, great sex” or “Thanks for being a good partner” or whatever. I want to say what they did, how I felt, and how my needs were met. So, that’s one, and you can use that anytime. I keep something on my refrigerator, so I let people know that I care about how I appreciate them on those three levels in Technicolor. The second thing, other exercise people can do is to sit with your partner and do what we call “empathic listening”. You can practice empathic listening, whether it’s to a joy or to a pain. So we start with saying, “OK partner you go first. You can share a joy or a pain, something that happened in our relationship that brought you joy or pain.” Say for example it’s a pain and they say “Well, it just that you’re just an unconscious, insensitive baboon lover.” And your job is not to react or reflective listen—you don’t reflect back “So you think I’m a baboon?” What I want to you practice reflecting back is what you hear their feelings are, and what their unmet needs are. It’s a pain, it’s an unmet need. So my reaction would be something like “So, I’m guessing you’re angry and hurt and you need a lot more sensitivity in our lovemaking than we had last night, is that what’s going on?” And then let them go on to the next layer and the next layer and just stay with it. So I’m reflecting back what I’m hearing their feelings and needs are. Whatever they say to me, I reflect back; I hear this feeling, I hear this need, unmet need. If it’s a joy, “Hey, you’re a great lover”, I reflect back, “So you’re really excited, you’re really pleased, you really got off last night, really met your needs through orgasm (laughing) or connection or excitement.” So, either one brings us into a deeper connection with each other, whether it’s in healing that comes through the pain of hearing that pain and not taking it personally or whether it’s the celebration that just brings us more into that union of ecstasy together in celebration.

Chip August: Wow, both terrific exercises. Thank you so much, thanks for taking this time to be here, I really appreciate our time together. And, well, just thank you.

Kelly Bryson: It was a pleasure. I’m just delighted you’re doing this, and the work that you’re doing in the world…I really believe is bringing us into that world where everybody wins that Stan talks about.

Chip August: Thank you very much, thank you so much. And thank you listeners for listening, this wraps up another episode of Sex, Love, & Intimacy. I hope you enjoyed it and as I say, please give me some feedback, I’d like to know how I’m doing and please tune in again for our next episode. Bye for now.

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