Free Resources

Free Resources

Feelings & Needs Vocabulary Lists

When you ask for what you want, how do you phrase it and intend it? Most of us don’t grow up developing a varied feelings and needs vocabulary; we may even have been actively discouraged from expressing ourselves.

A feelings and needs vocabulary is incredibly helpful in building understanding and reducing barriers because we can say what is important to us without judging someone as wrong or bad in some way.  We say what we want and why it matters to us, instead, and are also more likely to be able to understand what is important to others. In the end, we will feel less aggravated and will be able to build the quality of connection where people are more likely to say “yes” to us. 

Take the following example. Which message would you rather hear?

A) Your work is not up to standard and I can’t rely on you to do what’s needed.

B1) (Work) When I asked you to write a proposal for the widget X project, I imagined that it would include a detailed budget that outlined A, B, and C. I want clarity about all the costs so that we can make an informed decision on whether to launch X this fall or to refine our design. Can you add those budget details and have the revised budget to my by noon next Friday so that we can present it to the team at the meeting on Monday?

B2 (Home) I was surprised when I saw some spinach and sauce on the inside of the pan on the drying rack. I worry about us cooking with pans that have dried food stuck to the sides because I want us all to stay healthy. Could you rewash that pan, tonight?

Click here for feelings and needs lists: Needs Feelings Body