Have you ever said yes when you really wanted to say no?
Do you feel that fate has more influence on whether or not you find success?
If you’re like many people who struggle with being passive, you may be looking for ways to increase assertiveness. You might feel dissatisfied with how things tend to work out for you or even how people respond to you. Maybe you’re tired of waiting for life to happen or remaining silent when you’d rather voice your opinion. If this sounds like you then you’re in the right spot. Below are some tools to learn how to increase assertiveness in your life and become the person you want to be.
- Remain Calm
Stress and anxiety are both huge contributors to being passive.
You can effectively manage stress and anxiety by performing deep breathing techniques. It’s as simple as it sounds. Inhale slowly and deeply for a few seconds then exhale just as slowly as you inhaled. Do this for several minutes.
This will deactivate your stress-induced “fight or flight” response and allow calmness to run the show.
- Begin Small
When you first start to increase your assertiveness, it may seem impossible. Rather than starting with a super tense situation, try to be more assertive in less tense situations.
For instance, the next time you’re out to dinner and the waiter brings you the wrong dish, breathe deeply and politely send it back.
Start small and increase your assertiveness techniques from there. You’ll be pleasantly surprised at how well the practice pays off.
- Say No
A big part of being passive is trying to please everyone and putting other’s needs before your own.
To increase assertiveness in your life, you must learn to say no. It might feel selfish to say no the first few times you do it. It’s not selfish, though.
You have a responsibility to take care of yourself first. When you fail to take care of yourself, you end up depleted and often resentful.
People might be surprised that you’re saying no and try to push harder. Be consistent and you will soon establish healthier relationships in your life.
- Establish Personal Boundaries
Personal boundaries signal to others that you respect yourself and that they should too.
A great way to establish personal boundaries is to get in tune with your feelings. Figure out what behavior is acceptable or makes you feel uncomfortable. Once you’ve established this, honor those feelings.
For instance, if gossiping in the break room is not what you truly want to do then plan to address it. You can walk away, redirect the conversation, or confront the negative behavior.
People will soon learn how to behave appropriately around you.
- Release Negative Feelings
When you decide to increase your assertiveness, it can be difficult. You’ve been doing things one way for a long time. Communication habits can be tough to change.
To make the changes you want, you will need to let go of the negative feelings about yourself.
This one decision might be the biggest step you take in your search to become more assertive.
- Communicate Your Needs Clearly
Make certain your communication is honest, clear, and concise.
It might seem cliché, but people really can’t read your mind or between the lines. You want others to know exactly what you need from them.
Remember that being direct doesn’t necessarily mean being harsh. Your communication can be kind and respectful and still get your point across.
- Accept That You Can’t Control Others
To increase assertiveness in your life is to establish a closer relationship with yourself. It’s important to remember that you can only control yourself. You can’t control others and others don’t have the right to control you.
Assertiveness is about understanding that balance and having the confidence to accept yourself and others in the process.
While there is a learning curve, one of the best tips to increase assertiveness is to practice, practice, practice!
Should you run into any roadblocks along the way, contact me. I can help you create a customized method to increase assertiveness in your life to help you be a more satisfied person.