How did you manage a difficult situation with a partner, colleague, customer, or a child?

How did you manage a difficult situation with a partner, colleague, customer, or a child? Describe what happened or write down a short dialogue.

[time needed: 10 – 15 min]

Anna is Dominik’s sister. Anna is unhappy about something Dominik did but she is trying to use empathetic communication:

ANNA: I see you didn’t do the dishes today, bro. [1]
DOMINIK: Yeah, I was busy, sis.
ANNA: When you don’t do the dishes I feel really sad, you know. [2]
DOMINIK: You feel sad? Why?
ANNA: Well, because I need some help with the household. [3] Mum and dad are at work – I can’t do everything by myself. Can you do the dishes every other day, please? [4]
DOMINIK: Urgh. Well, I can try.

Maybe you work with clients in person or over the phone, maybe there was a problem between you and your colleague, maybe you were angry at your partner, maybe you wanted your kids to pull their weight at home a bit more. Give us one example of such a situation you had and how you solved it. You can describe it or create a mini-dialogue.


On 29 November I am going to take part in an online workshop called “Empatická komunikace – Aneb jak ustát konflikt a přitom si lépe porozumět”. It is about how to show empathy during difficult conversations and how to find a solution that respects both sides. The workshop is led by Honza Burian, a psychotherapist from Prague.

Every week there is at least one occasion in which I need to talk to my wife, kid, or neighbours and find a way out of a difficult situation. It’s important not only to look for a solution but also do it in a way full of respect and love for one another. The non-violent communication approach (= nenasilná komunikace) suggests that we focus on our feelings and needs and then make do-able request. There are FOUR steps to this approach. Anna, in the example above, used all of these steps [1…4] to talk to Domonik.

[1] OBSERVATION: what is happening, describe it without judgement.
[2] FEELINGS: how do you feel? What do you think the other person feels?
[3] NEEDS: what do you need? Acknowledgement, affirmation, support, security, belonging, freedom? What do you think the other person needs?
[4] REQUEST: make a request that is specific, concrete and do-able.


[A1-B1] – mírně pokročilí
show empathy = projevit soucit
is led by = (workshop) vede
at least = nejméně
for one another = jeden pro druhého
do the dishes = umýt nádobí
[B1-C1] – pokročilí
occasion = příležitost, možnost
do-able = proveditelný
pull one’s weght = přiložit ruku k dílu, pomoc se společným úkolem
acknowledgement = uznání
affirmation = ujištění