(Online) Communicating in Challenging Times [July 9-Aug 13, 2020]

Most of us long to be accepted for who we are and to experience harmony and ease in our close relationships with others. At the same time, we want to be authentic and to reveal what’s important and true for us.

VIDEO: Watch Dian’s overview of this 6-week online course [3:07]

Tragically, too often these desires are at odds with each other and we end up moving to one extreme or the other; we become either:

  • Passive: We accommodate others in the pursuit of harmony and end up sacrificing our authenticity by giving up on our needs.
  • Aggressive: We advocate for our own needs but do so with the energy of blame, criticism, or demand, which can lead people to get defensive or shut down.

These responses can especially be common in challenging times and situations, such as what we’re experiencing now—with myriad uncertainties and stresses, including political and social injustice and discord. How do we manage—both our own internal responses and in how we communicate with others?

Thankfully, there are tried and tested communication skills that you can learn to bridge this gap and create the honest and trust-based communication and relationships you want. 

Based on the principles of Nonviolent Communication as developed by the clinical psychologist Marshall Rosenberg, Communicating in Challenging Times will equip you to deal with sticky situations with a tried and tested 4-step communication process that you can use in any situation.


  • DATES: 6 consecutive Thursdays: July 9, 16, 23, 30; August 6, 13, 2020
  • TIMES: 10:00 am – 12:00 pm ET (New York) [convert to your time zone]
  • LOCATION: Your computer, tablet, or smartphone from the convenience of your home or office using Zoom, a free videoconferencing app (all sessions will be recorded).
  • COST: $437 – $277 sliding fee scale* (an average $357 contribution makes it sustainable for the instructor)
  • INSTRUCTORDian Killian, Ph.D. with Uma Lo assisting
  • QUESTIONS: Email the Registrar
  • RECORDINGS: Each session will be video recorded and shared with you afterward in case you want to review it (or in case you miss a session).

What You Will Learn:

Join me for this 6-week online course to learn practical, game-changing skills to:

  • Confirm that you’ve been heard fully and have heard others accurately.
  • Confidently understand what matters most, on a core level, in any situation.
  • Resolve differences in a mutually caring way.
  • Co-create solutions you want, free of demand, guilt, or shame.
  • Overcome the fear of speaking honestly and openly
  • Foster openness and cooperation in your relationships.
  • Create greater intimacy, trust, harmony, and connection.

In addition to the live sessions, as part of this course, you can meet with an empathy buddy between sessions to give and receive support and practice the skills you are learning.

Photo by Sharefaith from Pexels

Where we will meet:

This course will take place on Zoom, a free video conference platform available to anyone with a computer, tablet, or smartphone. It will be engaging and experiential including:

  • Examples that I will share from my own life of both successes and failures.
  • Demonstrations of how to put the communication skills in action
  • Practice opportunities where you get to test out how you can communicate with others in your life.
  • Resources and practices that you will take with you once the course ends.

This course will interest people who are:

  • Spouses, partners, or significant others (join the course on your own or with your partner)*
  • Parents
  • People with difficult people in their family
  • Co-workers or managers
  • Activists or volunteers in faith communities, social action organizations, and arts and community groups.
  • Anyone wanting greater authenticity, trust, and open communication!

*Note: If two or more people are registering from the same home or location, we encourage each person to register separately and (if possible) to use their own device for the sessions. This will allow, during breakout groups, to meet with different participants and give you space to work on issues that might be up in relation to the person you live and/or work with.

*About the sliding fee scale:

We are offering a sliding scale to make this course accessible to as many people as possible, especially in light of the disruptions occurring in our world. We also long for the sustainability of Dian and her support team in producing this program. The bottom of the scale is a built-in scholarship; if you can pay at the midpoint ($357) or above, this helps us to continue offering programming with the care and attention we like in a sustainable way, and supports us in making scholarships available to those who request them.

For context, costs include sustaining the trainer (Dian), her support team, website and registration platforms, and the technology to make the online course happen. We thank you in advance for stretching into what is comfortable for you investing in this program!

About the Trainer:

Dian Killian, Ph.D.

Dian Killian, Ph.D., has been a Certified Trainer with the Center for Nonviolent Communication since 2005 and has offered training around the world.  She is a co-author of two well-loved NVC books, Connecting across Differences: How to Connect with Anyone, Anywhere, Any Time (in English and German) and Urban Empathy: True Life Adventures of Compassion on the Streets of New York.

Based in Brooklyn, Dian teaches regularly at the Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health, the 92nd Street Y, the New York Open Center, and the Omega Institute and has worked with diverse organizations including Johnson & Johnson, Merck, Haver Analytics, Americorps, the United Nations Development Program, the Peace Alliance/Department of Peace campaign, New York University, and Cornell University.  She is known for sharing NVC in a clear, down-to-earth, and engaging way with humor and stories.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s