Human Stories

Do I need to be alone?

Has it ever happen to you to say/think: “I need to be alone“?
What does it really mean- “I need to be alone?”
Though I love being alone, I want to be clear: “To be alone” in my understanding is not a ‘Need’ (based on what we mean ‘Needs’ in NVC), but a strategy (a way) to meet a certain Need. 

Last week, the thought “I need to be alone” came to me in a very challenging moment- It was just a few minutes before a group of 18 people came to my house for an evening course…
Here is how NVC (again) helped me (or better say: saved my ass) to survive that moment:

Continue ‘The need to be alone’:  
It is 18:50. The course is starting at 19:00. I do not want to be around people, I want to be alone. Heaviness in my heart… I stay in my room.
18:59, time to start. I go to the workshop room, sit on my chair. One participant looks at me, and asks immediately: “Mmm….how are you Yoram?”. And I already know- there is no way back, and I start sharing:
“Hey everyone, I want to be transparent- today I don’t feel like seeing people, I want to be alone”.
Panic in my body…Oh my God, people are paying to come here! They made efforts to come all the way here, they want to feel welcome and loved… and I just don’t feel like seeing them???
And I continue revealing what is: “I am terrified that you will leave now”, I breath, to reveal a deeper fear: “And even worse: I fear you will tell everyone around you how awful the NVC course was… And then nobody would want to come to me, and I will stay alone, without a work and without meaning in my life.
To my surprise- no one is leaving, no one is frowning. And rather the group chooses to eagerly stay longer listening to what’s in my heart!
Encouraged, I continue exploring deeper, and soon I discover: “Actually, it is not really about me not wanting to see you, it is about a certain resistance in my body.” And first it came in Jackal: “I am tired of being the one to hold and lead alone all the dialogues when people get angry or feel hurt by me”. 
And then came the more Giraffe version: “I want to be held…I remember that my first NVC teacher could see what was inside me better than I could see myself. That was such a deep pleasure. I could then be like an honest child, playing/speaking in a very clumsy way… While other people didn’t understand me or got hurt by me, she looked at me with eyes that were saying: “Yes, it is beautiful what you are doing”. She saw my intentions behind my behaviors, she deeply understood me, she saw me as beautiful. I soooooo long to be held in this way…”
Last week, the way the group was with me, interested in me in that moment of sharing, touched me very much. They chose to spend 30 minutes listening to me. 18 people chose to stay with me, instead of continuing the original ‘learning plan’. This gave me such a sweet sense of being held. The rest of the evening there was not a second that I ‘needed to be alone’.
Actually, I didn’t need to be alone at all, I needed to be honest, and be held in my honesty.

With much hope for being need connected instead of strategy connected,