What is assertiveness? 5 tips to be more assertive
Assertiveness is the ability to communicate appropriately with other people, within a framework of empathy and respect for the other person and for ourselves. It is the ability to express our thoughts and emotions without resorting to aggressive or discriminatory behavior, which undoubtedly helps us to have better interpersonal relationships.
Assertiveness is a fundamental social skill to function in different contexts, and for this reason, today we want to delve a little into the subject.
Defining assertiveness, what is it and why is it important?
The concept of assertiveness refers to a certain form of behavior in which a person can express their point of view firmly and respectfully, in a framework of tranquility and empathy, in order not to violate the rights of other people . but without letting others invalidate our ideas or emotions.
Assertiveness is necessary to be able to relate better, since it is a communication strategy focused on congruence and balance. It is important to remember that communication is a pillar of social relationships, and poor communication can cause us to have many problems, while assertive communication can get us out of them.
Tips to be more assertive
An assertive person is clear that good communication helps us connect better with others and that is why they focus on improving their communication patterns.
Assertiveness is an attitude towards life, and it is something that can be learned through some techniques that we will tell you about below:
Learn to know and express your needs
Self-knowledge is the basis of knowledge of ourselves and of other people. This is why a good communication capacity necessarily implies that you know how to identify your needs, emotions and thoughts, and that you also learn to communicate them effectively.
A tip that can help you for this is to recognize that your ideas and emotions are valid, and that you do not have to fight to express them. This will help you to be able to say what you think and feel within a framework of respect for the other, but with the certainty that what you have to express is important.
Practice assertive communication in everyday situations
Assertiveness is a technique that serves you in the same way for all your relationships: personal, family, work and circumstantial . This is why it must be an attitude that you apply in your day to day.
Think, for example, about how you would like to be treated, or about those things that bother you when you talk to other people . The idea is to apply what you would like to receive and avoid behaviors that make you feel bad or disrespected.
In each situation think what would be an assertive response? For example: Your children do not pick up their toys, if you yell or start to say that they are not doing anything at home, it is likely that they will become defensive. Instead, if you argue why it’s important to pick up the toys and what the consequences of not doing so would be, you’re more likely to get the expected attention.
Learn to say ‘no’ respectfully and effectively
Saying No is one of the things that seems most difficult to learn, but you must keep in mind that no is also a valid answer: “I don’t want to”, “I can’t”, “I don’t like it”, “I don’t seems”.
Sometimes we are afraid to say No, because we think that the other will feel uncomfortable or stop loving us, however with the first person you should be assertive is yourself, and forcing yourself to do something you don’t want can bring more inconvenience than clearly state that it is not what you want at the moment.
You must remember that saying No is not a direct attack against the other, but your right to free will, and that this should not be a trigger to weaken your social relationships.
Work on your self-esteem to be more assertive
Working on your self-esteem is something that will not only help you to be more assertive, but will also help you in different aspects of your life.
Building a good self-esteem means: Knowing ourselves better, recognizing our needs, knowing how to set limits and being able to value who we are. When we learn to love ourselves, we begin to love others better, because just as we treat ourselves with love, we learn that the other also deserves to be treated with respect and consideration.
When you know your needs and know how to express them, you recognize that the other’s needs are also valid and they have the right to express them, and this results in more assertive spaces of communication.
Practice active listening to improve your interpersonal relationships
The lack of assertiveness is often based on the fact that we do not know how to listen to others. Normally we listen to respond and not to understand what the other has to say , and this leads to power struggles in which both people become defensive because if we approach communication from this perspective, it will be very difficult to reach agreements.
Active listening means: listening fully to the other, not from our prejudices or preconceived ideas of what they are expressing, but from the genuine desire to listen and understand what they are saying.
To improve our active listening, it is also important not to take things personally, and also to recognize that the other person only speaks from their own ideas and emotions, which are as valid as yours.
To become very good at active listening, try to let the other speak, not interrupt them while they are expressing their ideas, and pay special attention to everything they are saying, in order to better understand what they mean.
Conclusion: Applying these tips to improve your assertiveness will help you lead a fuller life
As you can see, developing assertiveness can help you improve your relationship with yourself and with the world. This is why working on yourself will always be a gift to you and to the relationships you have with others.
Having a fuller and happier life depends on being able to develop tools and transform habits that allow us to be closer to what we want. If you don’t know how to start, remember that in the Psiconnea App you can work on your self-esteem, evaluate and improve your mental health, and learn strategies that allow you to feel better about yourself and build a life you don’t want to escape from.
The Psiconnea App is the right space to learn to manage your emotions, set goals focused on improving your life, and develop new skills such as assertiveness , more aligned with the life you want to live, as well as having an effective accompaniment that helps you look at your progress
Remember that taking care of your mental health is the first step to have a full life, because a healthy mind impacts all spheres of your being.