The art of being assertive
It can sometimes appear that communication between humans has been taken to a whole new level of ‘complicated.’ Yet communication can be brought down to its most simplistic, honest and effective level by following the passive, aggressive, assertive model.
Passive implies a lose win scenario where our feelings and thoughts are repressed and we allow others to dominate and control the outcome.
Aggressive is the opposite in which we win by dominating the other through intimidation, guilt and/or emotional withdrawal.
Being assertive however is where we listen to and respect the other person’s right to their opinion whilst maintaining our right to have and express our opinion also. Taking this position requires clear boundaries as it not only validates our right to express our views openly and honestly but can also prevent us from buying into other people’s dramas and being drawn into their anger and manipulation.
To express one’s views clearly through words and not actions (for example sulking or door slamming) and accepting nothing less from the other party set’s a higher standard in communication, increases intimacy and liberates us emotionally.
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