If you are a person that wants to be “nice” and “not cause problems”, but you suffer in silence and believe that nothing can be done to change the situation you need to read further. Learning how to be assertive can help you overcome fear, shyness, passivity, and even anger. Asserting yourself involves advocating for yourself in a positive, honest, and respectful way. Assertiveness means that you are communicating in a clear, direct, and honest way about your needs, opinions, and feelings. Being assertive will help you improve your relationships, relieve stress, make you more confident, and less resentful.
Here are ways to start being assertive: When you start using the below techniques it’s important to start small so that you do not overwhelm yourself.
- The best way to start using effective assertive language is to use “I” statements to express what you are thinking and feeling. So for an example, instead of saying, “You are mean to me!” you can say, “I feel hurt when you call me stupid.”
- Rehearse what you want to say and be clear in what you want. Those around you are not mind readers.
- Practice saying no.
- Express yourself in a calm manner. Take deep breaths if you need to.
- Don’t apologize or feel ashamed or guilty for expressing a need or want.
- Use confident body language and tone. Best way to do this is by practicing in front of your mirror.
Assertiveness takes time but be persistent with your efforts and you will see the pay off.