Geoff, the giraffe, is the symbol of Compassionate Communication.  In this role, the giraffe exemplifies the power of compassionate to change lives and the world.  He is David McCain’s “right hand man” (so-to-speak) as he joins him as a training assistant at public and private offerings.  We had a chance to sit down with the giraffe last week to learn more about what makes his big heart tick!

Communicating with Heart (CwH):  Hello, Geoff. Thanks for joining us today. I’m looking forward to getting to know you better.

Geoff, the giraffe: Wonderful. I’m excited to  be here to contribute to your learning and that of your readers.

CwH: As the symbol of Compassionate (Nonviolent) Communication you must be very pleased.  I’m curious why you were granted this illustrious honor.right-hand-man

Geoff: Yes, I am pleased. I have the privilege of joining Dave at his training sessions to help people get a handle on this amazing process with world-changing potential.  I was granted this honor for a couple of reasons.  My general demeanor is compassionate due both to my gentle, equanimous state of being and my willingness to stick up for myself when I need to.

CwH: Hmmm. You exhibit equanimity and you stick up for yourself? It seems to me that if you are equanimous there isn’t much need to stick up for yourself.

Geoff:  It might seem so and, at the same time, I find that, in certain circumstances, to be compassionate, I chose to assert my needs.  There’s a misconception that living compassionately means always being gentle and kind and not making waves. That’s not true; Compassion means taking care of yourself and others which includes being assertive at times.  I’m quite skilled at being assertive in a kind, respectful way. You should see me at the waterhole when the jackals cut in line!

CwH:  Yes, I bet that’s an interesting time.  I understand that you have a couple physical qualities that illustrate your compassion. Could you tell me about those?

giraffe-head-shotGeoff: Yes, I’d love to.  The three special qualities through which I embody compassion are:  1) Long neck – I am practiced at being vulnerable and, if you want to be in relationship with others, vulnerability is important; 2) Big heart – The first element of compassion is self-love and self-acceptance and I have both in spades; and 3) I can digest thorns – I have a special saliva that allows me to take scary thorns into my system and find value in them.  There are “thorny” messages out in the world so it really helps to be able to not freak out when you hear them. I find that they provide a space for connection when handled effectively.

CwH: Ok. We’re out of time so I’d like to thank you for joining us today.  I look forward to seeing you out in the jungle practicing compassion.

Geoff: Wonderful. I so much appreciate you giving me the opportunity. Be well!

Every day I focus on nurturing and refining my “giraffeness”.  Following the giraffe’s lead, understanding that we will learn when we miss the mark, will take us to a place where everyone is Communicating with Heart!