I am passionate about creating safe spaces for honest sharing, connecting and learning.
In my early 40’s I underwent a process of discovering what I really want, as opposed to mostly being in tune with the needs of others and avoiding conflict. More than anything I wanted to learn how to be authentic, or true to myself while staying in connection with important people in my life.
During that time I was fortunate to be introduced to NVC, which gave me a model for compassionate, connecting communication. I now apply NVC in all of my relationships: as a partner, mother, friend, colleague and perhaps the most important one of all, the one I have with myself.
I am thrilled to have the opportunity to spread NVC through empathy sessions, coaching (accredited at senior level by the European Mentoring & Coaching Council), mediation and teaching. I live with my Dutch husband and our two teenage children in Haarlem, where I work (as well as in Amsterdam) supporting individuals, couples and organizational teams with their wellbeing, collaboration and communication goals.
Languages: English, Dutch
The basic course has been a deep learning experience for me. I feel so happy and grateful. NVC helps me to meet my need for connection, first to myself, and through that, to the world around me. Your warm smiles together with an overall open attitude made me feel calm and at ease from the very start of the course. My need for emotional safety was met, so that I dared to expose myself in a vulnerable way. This is where true learning takes place for me.
We found Cara to be patient, understanding, compassionate, supportive and gentle. She did a great job helping us toward connection by encouraging us to look inside of ourselves to communicate our needs better, by guiding us how to distinguish thoughts and feelings. She made sure both of us had a chance to speak and listen, which was an immensely difficult task given the ‘can’t get any worse’ state we were in. Seeing Cara individually was relaxed, introspective, and stimulating. She asked me questions that encouraged me to bring attention fully to myself, acknowledge and own my feelings, which helped to clarify some things troubling me.
Thank you so much Cara, for all your care, commitment and creativity in working with our team. I know it has been challenging at times to hold everyone’s needs equally and to find creative strategies. I feel extremely grateful for the learning that has happened and also celebrating that the team members are able to understand, connect to and express their needs. I feel there is a great sense of joy in having found their autonomy and empowerment to come up for and meet their own needs.