The Have Tos” Are Everywhere!


Okay had to share another one = )  It was so good & inspiring.  I hope you all like it as much as I do = )

"We are dangerous when we are not conscious of our responsibility for how we behave, think and feel."
– Marshall Rosenberg, Nonviolent Communication: A Language of Life

Living Compassion Tip — Week 11

The Have Tos” Are Everywhere!

Do you find the "Have Tos" taking over your thoughts and words? Do you ever say, "There are some things I just have to do!"

Dr. Marshall Rosenberg says, "We deny responsibility for our actions when we attribute their cause to …"

  • Vague impersonal forces: "I washed the car because I had to."
  • The actions of others: "I spanked her because she ran into the street."
  • The dictates of authority: "I lied to the client because the boss told me to."
  • Uncontrollable impulses: "I was overcome by my urge to finish the chocolate cake."

Group pressure: "I started smoking because all my friends did." A teacher at a workshop with Marshall once said, "I hate giving grades. But I have to give grades, it’s the district policy." Marshall helped her translate the statement to "I choose to give grades because I want to keep my job."

The "Have Tos" reflect language that implies lack of choice. Feeling as if we have no choice leads us to think, say and do things that do not support what we truly value in life.


Mindful Practice for the Week

This week, watch out for the "Have Tos" that surround you. When a "Have To" takes over your thoughts or words, take a deep breath and express why you "choose to" take that particular action.

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