to be assertive
what is assertive
"Christian wisdom makes one man more powerful than ten rulers
in a city"
what is assertiveness & assertive behaviour?
Assertive behaviour is the ability to formulate
and communicate one's own thoughts and wishes in a clear, direct
and non-aggressive way!
It's about knowing where you stand, and communicating from this
starting point. You are more likely to get what you want, in half
the time, and without treading on everyone's toes in the process
- you can't loose!
will being assertive do for me?
It will raise your self-esteem by showing you how
to resist bully tactics and emotional blackmail without using
aggression! People who develop good communication skills are able
to defuse difficult situations. Naturally this will help in romantic
relationships too. Far from being more difficult to deal with,
being assertive will make you easier to deal with as people know
where they stand. Assertive behaviour also promotes a positive
response in others!
how do we become who we are?
lifes' knocks we pick up all sorts of behaviour patterns good
and bad, that make us who we are. We end up assuming bad traits
are part of our true self when in fact they're not. Just as It's
not good to be aggressive it's not good to let people walk on
you. The answer in an age where people are increasingly resorting
to bullying is to be assertive - or be an easy target! Being unassertive
doesn't make you bad, but it stops you from using your full potential.
children behave assertively!
Does a child offend you when it becomes upset?
No - because it's not attacking you directly but expressing earnestly
its wants and needs. To be successful in dealing with people we
must express ourselves earnestly!
does assertive behaviour add anything to male/female relationships?
Yes! Anything that improves your communication
skills will do this.
to being assertive
feeling threatened . . .
1) pray God intervenes. God will act in your life if you
genuinely want Him to. Conflicts and threatening situations can
be defused if one party involved invokes God's healing power.
use assertive behaviour
During conflict situations a person may adopt four types of response:
4) Assertive behaviour
Passive response is appropriate at times (when dealing
with someone who could be violent at any moment).
Sniper response is particularly tasteless and includes
things like spreading rumours or withholding information.
Aggressive response is characterised by shouting, abusive
language, obscene gestures, invasion of body space, aggressive
postures and irrational behaviour.Ê This demonstrates lack
Assertive behaviour means feeling good about yourself,
being aware of your rights and taking responsibility for your
examples of assertive & agressive behaviour
please leave these premises
I think your language is unacceptable
I do not wish to continue this conversation
You are a rude bastard
Shut your mouth
you have fundamental rights:
The right to speak and to be heard
The right to make errors
The right to change your mind
The right to be responsible only for yourself and your actions
The right to say no
When dealing with difficult people . . .
You have the right to terminate a conversation
You have the right to choose a proper place for a discussion
You have the right to be treated with respect
Points to remember
1) You can be assertive
with people on a higher level than you as long as you show respect
in words and actions.
"YOU" statements cause defensive responses promoting conflict.
How to negotiate
Alexander Wilson JP BSc (Psych.) PhD.
attentively. This is the most important part of successful assertive
negotiations. Empathise with the other person. See things from
their view so you remain calm and objective. People respond positively
if they think you are willing to listen. Summarise the key points
of the problem to demonstrate you're listening and willing to
Be sure your statements are correct. Vagueness will be seen as
weakness and increase resistance. If you request a person stop
doing something which is offensive, say so with a firm, calm voice.
Always have an alternative solution ready. In most cases, you
should be able to find several solutions. Remember the way you
feel about yourself and others comes out in the way you talk (from
the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks)
Always give the other party opportunity to retreat without loss
of face. A WIN-WIN solution is the most successful ending to confrontation.
Use words and body language to defuse a confrontation. For example.
"I am sure we can solve this problem together". What
can I do to help this situation for you?
1. Decide if you want to say yes or no. You may need time
to think it over - let the person know when you'll be ready. Know
what you want.
2. Ask for clarification if you don't understand what is
requested of you.
3. Be as brief as possible with a legitimate reason for
your refusal. Avoid elaborate justifications as these may be used
to argue you out of your "no."
4. Use the word "no". "No" has more power and is less ambiguous
than, "Well, I just don't think so..."
5. Make sure your gestures mirror your verbal messages.
Shake your head when saying "no." Often people unknowingly nod
their heads and smile when they are attempting to refuse.
6. "I won't" or "I've decided not to" are better than "I
can't" or "I shouldn't". This emphasizes that you have made a
7. You may have to decline several times before the person
"hears" you. It is not necessary to come up with a new explanation
each time, just repeat your "no" and your original reason for
8. If the person persists after you have repeated "no"
several times, use silence (easier on the phone), or change the
topic of conversation. You have the right to end the conversation.
9. You may want to acknowledge any feelings another has
about your refusal, "I know this will be a disappointment to you,
but I won't be able to..." Don't say "I'm sorry". In most situations
saying "I'm sorry" tends to compromise your basic right to say
10. Avoid feeling guilty. It's not up to you to solve others'
11. If you do not want to agree to the person's original
request, but still desire to help them out, offer a compromise:
"I will not be able to baby-sit the whole day, but I can sit for
two hours." - You can say "no" to a request you originally "said"
a program could help to acquire a new set of responses and to
be more effective in your interaction and communication with others.
You would learn what to say or do in various situations, when
to say it, and, importantly, how to say it. Getting a little bit
''people-smarter'' can't hurt, and it can make you feel so much
better about yourself.
Always create distance from the other party when involved
in serious confrontation. If
someone becomes physically violent, contact the Police.
advice on assertive
behaviour, books & tips