GIVE Skill

The GIVE skill in DBT Interpersonal Effectiveness is an acronym for Gentle, Interested, Validate, and Easy Manner. Each of these is a technique that helps individuals improve communication skills to maintain and improve relationships and social interactions.

  • (Be) Gentle:  Respect people, but at the same time, avoid being harassed, threatened, or manipulated. Express your anger verbally without issuing threats or emotional blackmail. Instead, you can describe, in a calm and composed manner, what would happen if things were not done the way you wanted them to. Avoid exaggeration but remain focused on the topic, regardless of how painful it might be. Do not be judgmental or resort to moral policing and blaming; neither should you appear sarcastic by smiling or smirking. Exit gracefully when you must.
  • (ACT) Interested: Politeness and courtesy expect you to listen to the other person’s point of view. Make eye contact, which reflects your interest, and lean towards the person instead of staying away. If the person wishes to have a discussion later, be patient and oblige them.
  • Validate: Validation of a person’s views proves your understanding and consideration of the other person. Learn to view the world from the perspective of others, acknowledging their hard work and struggles. For those who are uncomfortable being spoken to in public, speak to them in a private area.
  • (USE AN) Easy manner: When communicating, avoid being too formal and lighten the situation abit by using a little humor. Make the other person comfortable with a “soft sell” approach and no attitude.