If you’re a quiet person or more than a little shy, you’ve probably always had problems with being assertive. Maybe you swallow your feelings or you favour passive aggression or you end up blowing up at people – no matter how you deal with your feelings, if you aren’t being assertive then chances are you aren’t dealing with them healthily. Being assertive means explaining what you need and want to other people, and listening to them explain what they need and want in response. Here are some tips on how to be more assertive in your everyday life…
Plan Out What You Want To Say
If you aren’t a naturally assertive person then it might not come easily to you. Make sure that you plan out what you want to say before you say it. For instance if you have to call your cell phone provider to get them to change what you’re getting to what you need, make sure that you write down your points first before you make the call. You could also consider taking part in a personal development course. Not only can they help you learn to communicate more easily, but they can also help you to progress both in your career and your family life.
Learn To Say No
One of the easiest ways to get mentally, physically and emotionally exhausted is to say yes to everything that people ask you to do. Remember that it’s okay to put your own wellbeing first and that it isn’t selfish to say no – and even if it is, it’s also okay to prioritise yourself sometimes. Setting limits on your relationships will help them to be healthier. Being assertive means that you’re becoming better and better at advocating for yourself – the way you probably do for others in your everyday life.
Practise In Smaller Situations
Remember that you have to start somewhere and that no situation is too small to be assertive in. If the barista makes your coffee wrong, then politely ask for it to be changed instead of huffing and grumbling and hoping that they’ll magically notice that something is wrong. If you start small then it will get easier to work up to bigger issues in your life, like a needy spouse or a friend who doesn’t treat you as well as you’d like.
Analyse Your Own Emotions
Make sure that you take a deep breath before you say anything that you can’t take back, and then rein it in a little. If you’re angry, it’s a good idea to take a little time by yourself so that you can return to the situation and calmly explain how you feel and why. Try writing in a journal to learn more about the way that you feel, and write down a list of situations that make you angry or make you retreat into yourself, so you can see what triggers lead to unhealthy behaviours. Make sure that you’re honest with yourself about the way that you feel and how you deal with it – that means that it’ll be easier to change in the future.