Non-violent vs violent communication


Dr KK Aggarwal    17 May 2018

Most of us engage in violent communication every day and this is one of the main reasons for any conflict.

A violent communication can be in thoughts, action, speech or writings. It is based on judgment and not observations and finds fault with others. The components of a violent speech are Condemnation, Complaint and Criticism (3Cs). Hostility, aggression, anger can be called violent communication.

A non-violent communication, on the other hand, is either based on observations or on individual opinions. These observations or opinions are always written or spoken as quote-unquote.

Gossip is a way of violent communication and is common cause of misunderstanding between people and relational harmony. It is a stress-related risk factor for heart diseases. The three main characteristics of gossip are:

  1. One talks about others.
  2. The talk is in their absence.
  3. It is invariably without source.

This means talking about somebody in their absence, without verifying the facts. Gossiping always distorts the message. A typical example of this is the game of ‘Chinese Whispers’ where each person whispers a message to the other in a large circle and when the last player speaks the message aloud, it is quite different from the original message - it is totally distorted.

Gossip should therefore be avoided as it invariably reaches to the person whom you are criticizing, condemning or complaining about and creates misunderstanding or controversy

One should practice non-violent way of living, especially non-violent communication.


Dr KK Aggarwal

Padma Shri Awardee

Vice President CMAAO

Group Editor-in-Chief IJCP Publications

President Heart Care Foundation of India

Immediate Past National President IMA

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