The Heart of the Feelings

During conflict resolution trainings and peace building classes, I talk about feelings. What do feelings have to do with peace and conflict?   

If you feel happy and content, what vibe do you give off to the people around you? Likewise, if you feel angry, hurt, or frustrated, what sort of energy do you share? 

It seems easier to just act out of feelings rather than acknowledge the feeling, sit with it, and find out what the feeling means.  

Feelings provide important signals about needs. When each member of a couple feels fulfilled, thankful, and openhearted, it may mean the needs for affection, trust, and support are being met. Feelings of anger, hurt, or frustration, may reflect unmet needs for connection, understanding, or appreciation.  

During a family mediation, when I hear a spouse say, “you’re never home,” I hear “I miss you, I need support, connection…” However, the other spouse usually hears, “nothing I ever do is good enough.”   

The “never home” interpreted as “not good enough” may not meet the need for appreciation, thereby beginning this looping circle of unmet needs. This may lead to one person shutting down and avoiding the conversation or being more confrontational or aggressive.  What if there was a way to be clear about needs while showing compassion for a spouse or partner? 

Being clear about any need, including a need for connection, may feel uncomfortable or awkward to share. Would you rather build further disconnection, or create a deeper connection, along with affection, trust, or support?  

Communicating for Couples classes teach non-violent communication (NVC) tools for sharing honestly with clarity and compassion.  

Sherry Ann Bruckner

Sherry Ann Bruckner

Most widely known as Lonzo's human, mediator, speaker, and author Sherry Ann Bruckner works with leaders and organizations to create peace, resolve conflict, and transform visions into results.

From her twenty-plus years' experience practicing civil and family law, and her own personal experiences with silence and violence, Sherry Ann understands how much inner peace impacts outer peace. A graduate of Hamline University's College of Liberal Arts and William Mitchell College of Law, she also studied conflict resolution at Rothberg International School in Jerusalem. Sherry serves as a neutral on matters ranging from bias and employment discrimination to marriage dissolution and caring for aging parents. A speaker and trainer on the global stage, Sherry gives you and your audience practical skills and the confidence to use embrace your personal power to create peace. Through helping thousands of people navigate their way through conflict, and finding her own way to inner peace, she shares the transformational power of clarity, compassion, curiosity, and cribbage.

Visit to learn more or give her a call at (320) 808-3212.
Sherry Ann Bruckner

Be gentle with you. Be gentle with all. Be the peace.