Karen Turner PHD | How to be more assertive?
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How to be more assertive?

How to be more assertive?


by BoomerYearbook.com

Do you find it hard to put your foot down?

Are you unable to voice your opinion?

Do you feel your loved ones and friends sometimes treat you like a doormat?

Is it difficult for you to say “NO”?

Do you often find yourself going out of your way to oblige people, even when you don’t want to?

If the answer to any of these questions is yes, then you are not being assertive enough. The problem is many people simply do not see “being assertive” as a positive trait. In fact being assertive is often confused with being aggressive. The truth is that aggression is a negative emotion which has its roots in anger, while being assertive is a positive emotion rooted in self-respect and self love.

Why should you be assertive?

Ask yourself do you feel happy with always letting others have their way with you? Do you never feel resentful? Do you feel loved and appreciated? Don’t you get irritated with yourself for not being able to say “NO” when you really want to? A person who’s not assertive may seem calm on the surface but has a simmering resentment brewing within him/her. There’s a hidden anger against oneself and others. Unassertive behavior is not only hazardous for an individual’s own health but also for his/her relationships.

Being assertive can make your life and relationships far more fulfilling. You’ll be able to speak your mind without waiting for others to read it. You will feel loved and appreciated and not used by others. You will be able to say “NO” when you want to, without feeling guilty about it. Being assertive will teach you to how to love yourself and be more loving towards others.

How to be more assertive?

Take conscious steps to be more assertive

If you’ve always been an unassertive person, you may have difficulty in figuring out the difference between assertion and aggression. You may not be able to understand which situations call for assertiveness. Therefore you will initially need to make conscious attempts to be assertive. You can ask yourself the following questions whenever you are confronted with a difficult situation

“Am I being unfair to myself?”

“Will saying yes make me feel angry, deflated or upset?”

“Is this person’s behavior hurting me?”

If the answer to any of these questions is “yes”, you know the situation calls for assertiveness.

Positive Affirmations

You can’t change your attitude and natural reactions in a day. Your instinctive reactions depend on your beliefs and your beliefs are shaped by your experiences and cognitive conditioning. So if you have always been told that caring for others’ needs and wants is more important than what you want then that’s what you’ll end up believing. Since cognitive conditioning is only a set of patterned ideas and messages which are thrown at us repeatedly, it is possible to de-condition ourselves and learn new ideas and beliefs. Positive affirmations can be of help here.

Make up your own affirmations or repeat the following in front of a mirror everyday:

“I love and accept myself the way I am”

“I have the right to express my feelings”

“It’s easy for me to speak up for myself”

“I have the right not to take responsibility for others people’s actions and problems”

“It’s safe for me to say “NO” when I want to”

Repeat these affirmations as often as you can or follow a week by week program, in which you can focus on one affirmation per week. You can also write these affirmations down on a piece of paper and repeat them as often as you can.

Being assertive is not a selfish act but an act of self-love. Once you start being assertive you’ll notice a change in your personality and relationships. When you start expressing yourself openly, you start sharing your true self with your loved ones.

Want to learn more? Have a comment or situation you’d like to start? Continue your self-help coaching journey at Boomer Yearbook.

www.boomeryearbook.com is a social networking site connecting the Baby Boomer generation. Share your thoughts, rediscover old friends, or expand your mind with brain games provided by clinical psychologist Dr. Karen Turner. Join today to discover the many ways we are helping Boomers connect for fun and profit.

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