It is difficult to strike a balance between being overly aggressive or passive. Here’s 10 tips you can learn to make yourself more assertive. Assertiveness is a communication skill that can reduce conflict, build up your self-confidence and improve relationships in the workplace.

  1. Make the decision to positively assert yourself. Commit to being assertive rather than passive or aggressive and start practicing today.
  2. Aim for open and honest communication. Remember to respect others when you are sharing your feelings, needs, wants, beliefs or opinions.
  1. Listen actively. Try to understand the other person’s point of view and don’t interrupt when they are explaining it to you.
  1. Agree to disagree. Remember that having a different point of view doesn’t mean that you are right and the other person is wrong.
  1. Avoid guilt trips. Be honest and tell others how you feel or what you want without making accusations or making them feel guilty.
  1. Stay calm. Breathe normally, look at the person in the eye, keep your face relaxed and speak in a normal voice.
  1. Take a problem solving approach to conflict. Try to see the other person as your friend not your enemy.
  1. Practice assertiveness. Talk in an assertive way in front of a mirror or with a friend. Pay attention to your body language as well as to the words you say.
  1. Use ‘I’. Stick with statements that include ‘I’ in them such as ‘I think’ or ‘I feel’. Don’t use aggressive language such as ‘you always’ or ‘you never’.
  2. Be patient. Being assertive is a skill that needs practice. Remember that you will sometimes do better at it than at other times, but you can always learn from your mistakes.


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