Get a glimpse into the story of co-author, Simone Anliker, from the book Holistic Healing, about how she used conscious conversation to repair her painful emotional relationship with her sister.
The most incredible part of this story? The conversation happened without her sister even being in the room.
Have you ever fallen out with someone who really matters to you?
The majority of us have experienced challenging relationship moments. Who hasn’t had a big falling out with a partner, harboured resentment towards a family member, or ruminated over harsh words exchanged with a friend in the heat of the moment?
In the best case scenario, you put these moments down to experience, brush yourself down, learn your lessons and carry on. As you’ll discover in the book, in a less healthy scenario, it is only a matter of time and circumstance before buried emotions rudely and unexpectedly resurface…
Imagine how your life can change when you discover a technique that helps you process years of pent-up emotions in the space of a couple of hours.
That’s exactly what Simone experienced after she attended a workshop to start learning about a healing conversation technique called Nonviolent Communication (NVC). It changed her life so much, she now uses this approach to change the lives of others, as a transformational coach, author and Certified Trainer for Nonviolent Communication.
We got together online to explore her story more deeply. You can watch our conversation here or over on YouTube and read more below about what Simone shares in the book about how she rescued her relationship with her sister through conversation.
Why is it so important to heal our relationships?
Relationship issues are a normal part of life, because we all relate to the world differently.
Ultimately they teach us what it means to be human. They help us embody compassion, patience, tolerance and understanding. They open our minds and teach us what we value and how we can take responsibility for our boundaries.
The problem comes when we don’t know how to process our feelings in a healthy way, so instead, we bury them, side-step confrontation and hide how we really feel behind a mask of politeness.
This not only impacts our energy levels, wellbeing and emotional growth, it also means we miss out on the true connections and conversations that nurture us.
Emotions like frustration and anger build up and get stored in our body. Eventually this manifests in stress responses, such as headaches, locked jaw, back ache, sleeping issues, migraines, depression and anxiety. Left unaddressed, long term stress leads to much more serious health issues.
As Simone discovered, when it comes to repressed emotions, with the right conditions, this can be avoided.
The Day the Dam Burst
‘When someone really hears you without passing judgment on you, without taking responsibility for you, without trying to mold you, it feels damn good … When I have been listened to, when I have been heard, I am able to re-perceive my world in a new way and to go on.’
~ Carl Rogers
If we’re honest, we almost always know what emotions we’re hiding, even if we pretend we don’t. In our quieter moments, sat home watching a film or listening to music, we know exactly which words or stories trigger us. And even though we swallow the tears, or distract ourselves with chocolate, we know what we’re avoiding and we know why.
For Simone, when one of the women on the NVC workshop shared how upset she was about her fragmented relationship with her sister, it was too close to home. Despite her carefully maintained defenses, all Simone’s walls came down as her carefully controlled emotions burst right through.
It was the beginning of her journey back to healing what needed healing… even though she had no contact with her sister at the time.
Simone’s Healing Journey Began…
Simone’s healing journey began because she was ready for it. Somehow she had found her way to the perfect place and the perfect method at the perfect time.
Her pain had decided it was time to show up and Simone was ready to start processing it. She had no means of talking to her sister, who was the source of her suffering, so when her coach suggested having a Healing Conversation and playing the role of her sister, Simone said yes.
Here are the key components that made this process so powerful for healing:
✨ Staying present, open and compassionate
As Simone describes it, her coach stepped into role-being, rather than role-playing, becoming energetically like her sister, whilst still being a coach who held the space. She stayed empathic, which helped Simone to trust that she could say what she really felt.
✨ Being received fully
The safer Simone started to feel, the more she leaned into the unique position of being unconditionally received and heard. As she expressed her anger, grief, despair, hurt and disappointments, she slowly shared things she had never spoken out loud to anyone.
✨ A powerful question
Unsurprisingly, at the start of this process, Simone still held back her deeper thoughts and feelings. Most of us would never say what’s really going on in our head, because we fear rejection and judgment. To help Simone feel more courageous about sharing, her coach repeatedly asked a powerful question: ‘Is there more you would like me to hear?’
✨ Reflection and reconciliation
After her coach was sure Simone had unburdened and shared as much as she could, she asked Simone if she could now share how she felt (as her sister), about all she had just heard.
The ability of the coach to listen to Simone with such unconditional presence, meant that when she shared her feelings, regrets and story in the role of Simone’s sister, it was easy for Simone to listen and receive her words with empathy and no resistance.
As she listened, Simone’s heart melted as her perspective and understanding changed completely. She went from feeling years of pain, to letting it all go completely and healing the relationship in a matter of two hours.
Two years later, her friendship with her sister had become the friendship of two soul sisters. You’ll have to read the book for the whole story…
📘Get your copy of the book: https://amzn.to/3nKMtvF
Simone Anliker, LL.M., is a Certified Trainer for Nonviolent Communication, a certified NARM Trauma Practitioner, iEMDR coach, author of The Power of Dyad Meditation and co-author of several other books. Simone is owner of Compassion & Voice which is an international seminar and coaching company based in Switzerland.
She describes Nonviolent Communication as Yoga for the heart, because yoga means union. When you work with her to heal your relationships, this is what you will experience – greater union and harmony with those you care about.
It is never too late to heal your relationships, no matter how difficult or irreparable they seem. In Simone’s beautiful words:
“If you still carry pain about a person you lost connection with or you don’t have access to, there is hope. You can free yourself from that pain and find peace. “
Get your copy of the book here
Holistic Healing is a collection of 12 open hearted, honest stories from courageous authors who share their insights about how they moved from illness, pain, confusion and breakdowns to creating lives that today are full of beauty, joy and light.
Their journeys are varied and required them to dig far deeper than any of them imagined. What unites them, is that they reunited their mind, body and soul, so that they could reclaim their own incredible healing power. If you are suffering with pain or illness, then you are not alone and there is always hope that your life can change for the better.
The authors in this book come from a variety of cultures, and have all had to let go of societal expectations in order to find their path to healing. They share their stories to show you that you can do the same.