Saying "No" with courage and care: responding to requests and demands

April 6th 2019, 10am - 5.30pm

Facilitated by Cath Burke


Would you like to find a way of saying an empowered "No" whilst maintaining your relationships with others?   Would you love to have access to more choice in your life when requests or demands come your way?


Most of us have been educated to stifle our “No", believing we will hurt others or be abandoned, so we end up going along with things when we don’t really want to. Or instead bark out a "No!" like a sergeant major, even if we want to say "Yes" had we been asked differently.  Both these reactions come at a cost to our relationships.


Nonviolent Communication helps us reach beneath the surface of our "No" to discover a creative and dynamic way of responding with courage and care in any moment.


On this day you’ll be supported to take away skills to:

There’ll be an invitation to explore this theme somatically in a light-hearted way through up to 90 minutes of movement and dance. We’ll also play with asking for what you want and being ok receiving a “No”. If you've never tried 'conscious dance' before you are especially welcome. No experience is necessary - you cannot do it wrong! And all ages, body shapes and fitness levels are welcome. Any doubts or queries call me for a chat.



Participants will be expected to have completed a two day foundation training in NVC, or equivalent.  This will ensure a common foundation for intermediate level engagement and practice.



Individual rate: £80 (If you are a regular employee and you will be paying for the training from your own pocket).

Small Charity rate: £100 (If you work for a charity with fewer than 15 employees and they will pay for the training).

Public sector / Large Charity rate: £120 (If you work for a public sector organisation, such as a local council or the NHS, or a charity with more than 15 employees, and they will pay for the training).

Private sector rate: £150. (If you work for a profit making company and they will pay for the training).


If any of the above prices would make it difficult for you to attend, please contact me – concessions are available.



The Quaker Meeting House, 58 Alexandra Grove, London N12 8HG


Enquiries and booking

Contact Cath at / 07847 828 636


Why include movement & dance?

I keep discovering new ways in which mindful movement supports the practice of NVC. Conscious dance increases Emotional Intelligence - quite simply, as we move e-motions stir, creativity and intuition awaken and we discover a richer internal landscape to bring into relationship which is more satisfying for everyone. Many of us have been conditioned to cut off from our emotional world to stay safe but sense that something is missing. When we move we can feel more alive and bringing this aliveness into conversations helps others feel as well as hear our words - this increases the chances of connection. Through dance we get more comfortable in our own skin which can help us be bolder in asking for what we want and more able to tolerate a “No”. Some of us are highly reactive, easily angered, fearful or disorientated by the words and behaviour of others. All of us have brains that are biologically programmed to react disproportionately to the common forms of stress we encounter every day. Bringing awareness to movement helps us regulate our emotions: we learn to use the body to ground and centre when we’re under attack, so we can choose how we respond in challenging conversations.

Testimonials: "Before the first dance session I felt quite stressed and fearful as I’d never done this type of movement practice before. Initially I felt uncomfortable but after a minute I started stretching and began feeling more relaxed and calm. I closed my eyes and started to feel my body, every part of it. The deeper we went into dance the more connected I felt with myself.  The more connected I felt with myself the closer I felt to the group. I loved the energy we all created there. It was the atmosphere of acceptance, joy and calmness. It was such a precious and powerful experience." Marianna

'Using movement in dance helped me to connect to someone when words felt inadequate. It gave me the opportunity to empathise and feel compassion towards him without the pressure of getting it ‘wrong’.’ Kate


More info about Open Floor Movement Practice:

Cath Burke is a qualified Open Floor Movement Practice facilitator and a member of the International Conscious Movement Teachers Association (ICMTA)

Guidelines for first timers

1 There are no steps to follow.

2 On the Open Floor we shift from speaking with words to speaking with movement. It makes for very creative conversations.

3 If you have no idea what to do, try something below: 

Stay As with any meditation practice, distractions happen – expect them. Just gently bring your attention back to movement. 

Pace yourself No matter what the rest of the room is doing, listen to your body. If you relax in the beat, like a swimmer treading water, you’ll refuel.

Stretch yourself If you always keep to yourself, include someone else in your dance. If you prefer dancing with a partner, try going solo. Slow down. Speed up. Experiment. Break a habit. Imitate somebody and see how it feels. 

It’s not about the music The teacher uses music to catalyse movement. Love it or hate it, how you respond is up to you. Use everything as fuel for your dance. 

Don't give up We all hit patches of fatigue, boredom, shyness, frustration, or discomfort. Even if you can only wiggle a finger or nod your head to the beat, stay with it until something changes. Most often, it will. 

Enjoy yourself Excessive seriousness will slow you down. 

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