Collaborative Divorce ~ The Power of Appreciations

Building Block #3 – Appreciation and Acknowledgment

In my previous blogs I spoke about the importance of establishing Connection and Listening when navigating life with your former after divorce. 

If you create a quality of connection at the beginning of a conversation and really listen to the other person’s concerns, it will increase the likelihood that you will listen to and hear each other.

The 3rd Building Block is to express appreciation and acknowledgment.  By appreciation and acknowledgment, I mean being seen and appreciated for the gifts we bring to other people and the world.

OK, so this can be hard, right?  Sometimes you are so mad at your former that you cannot find ANYTHING you appreciate about him and cannot acknowledge anything good about her. 

Well, if you want to have a successful interaction – dig deep and find something. I KNOW it’s there – you were in a relationship with them after all.  At one point you loved her/him a lot.  What is it that attracted you to your former?  What gifts does s/he bring to your child, the world, friends, even you?

Are you grateful that he is willing to talk with you about your child?  Do you appreciate that she spent a lot of her time and energy raising the kids while you were focusing on your career?  Can you acknowledge his commitment to his children?

I know this can be hard.  I want to encourage you to give it a try because if you are able to express appreciation, it is more likely that you will get your needs met in your conversations.  

One way to start is to ask yourself what you appreciate about YOURSELF!!  What gifts do you bring to the world? What gifts does your former spouse bring to the world?  What gifts do and did your former bring to your family?  

In service ~ 

Cat J. Zavis is an Attorney, Mediator and Coach for Parents co-parenting their children after divorce.  As a divorced mother of 2, she deeply understands the challenges, trauma and opportunities divorce provides. She has been practicing Nonviolent CommunicationSM, Mediation and Collaborative Law for 7 years. She conducts workshops and trainings in Nonviolent CommunicationSM for parents, lawyers, teachers, students, spiritual centers and professionals. In 2009, she was awarded a Peace Builder Award for her business.  Her combination of personal experience and professional expertise give Cat a unique perspective and ability to help co parents learn to communicate effectively and powerfully to transform their relationships and interactions with their former after divorce so they and their children can thrive.

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