7 Awesome Reasons Why It’s Worthwhile to Communicate Assertively
Do you communicate assertively? I’ve been on a toxic communication eradication campaign this month in case you haven’t noticed. This is the third article about communication in a row. And since I’ve covered the different communication styles along with the basics of toxic communication, I think I’ll keep with the trend and make one last effort to persuade my readers to communicate assertively.
Assertive communication is an indispensable skill for anyone who wants to cut through the bullshit while still maintaining respect for themself and others.
In the article, Is Communication a Skill That Can Be Learned Easily [The Honest Truth], I introduced assertive communication as the most effective communication style, along with several other styles that will get you nowhere fast, especially if you want to resolve a conflict with any level of skill or maturity. Now I want to get into the meat of how communicating assertively can make your life a lot more stress-free and fulfilling.
What is Assertive Communication?
Essentially, assertive communication is direct, clear communication. It is the happy medium between pushover (passive communication) and asshole (aggressive communication). Some overly sensitive people, or passive communicators may feel that assertive communication is too harsh. But the truth is, assertive communication is the only way to communicate honestly and respectfully.
If somebody thinks you’re harsh for being direct it may be that you are simply communicating something they don’t want to hear or acknowledge. Regardless, assertive communication is a tool to use for your own life mastery, even if you find yourself having to interact with others who do not use it.
Assertive communicators are respectful listeners and speakers who express themselves authentically and demand respect from others.
The Merits of Assertive Communication
Communicating assertively allows you to express opinions, disappointments or concerns honestly, and respectfully. This includes times when someone has disrespected you or has/is trying to push your boundaries. Go here for more insight on the importance of healthy boundaries.
This is much different from how the aggressive person expresses disappointment or concern, which is with disrespect. Refer to my last article, 4 Undeniable Tools Of Toxic Communication [Relationship Apocalypse] for some of the ways aggressive communicators disrespect and manipulate others.
Aggressive communication is dishonest because it places the emphasis on the other person’s shortcomings rather than addressing the true issue, which is how YOU are feeling.
Avoidance, on the other hand, is the approach of the passive person. When you avoid addressing uncomfortable issues, you deny other people who are affected or involved the opportunity understand your perspective, to state their case, and to work toward a solution. This is a different form of disrespect. It’s also dishonest.
Being able to assertively and positively communicate uncomfortable truths builds trust in relationships. It lets the other person know you are not willing to be unkind to them just because they have let you down or crossed your boundary. This makes them more receptive and willing to listen. When you assertively express your needs and boundaries, you refuse to be taken advantage of by others. In this way, assertive communication helps you learn to trust yourself as well.
Every time you succeed at assertively communicating sensitive information, you build trust in yourself and with others.
- Stress relief
Being able to honestly say what you need, especially when you are overwhelmed, addressing boundaries, or needing help with something, can provide a lot of stress relief. It’s much better than the grin and bear it approach of the passive person, which completely ignores the issue, or the manipulative tactics of the aggressor, which can bring on even more stress.
While being assertive can be uncomfortable if you’re used to being more passive, it can give you more and more confidence as you continue to practice it. It gives you a voice. When you are able to communicate your needs honestly and have mutually respectful interactions with others, your confidence grows. Assertive communication also builds confidence between and among people who practice it together.
- Strong, lasting relationships
Relationships that are built on the merits of assertive communication (respect, honesty, trust, etc.) are strong, fulfilling relationships where people feel safe being themselves and expressing their needs. This is also a result of the mutual respect that develops between individuals, groups or organizations who resolve conflicts with assertive communication.
- Goal achievement
Because assertive communication means expressing your needs and desires with directness and honesty, it allows you to maintain clarity and focus on your goals, and to communicate them clearly to others. It also helps you avoid having your energy depleted by unhealthy communication patterns, or constantly feeling like your boundaries are being disrespected.
- Life fulfillment
All these things combined come together to give you a more fulfilling life experience by empowering you to be fully who you are while building relationships that are based on mutual respect and openness.
After all, life fulfillment is the truest measure of success!
Assertive communication is the way to interact with others if you don’t want to be a pushover or an asshole. It paves the way for you to build trust and confidence in yourself and in your relations with others. It’s also a great tool for relieving stress, building strong and lasting relationships and achieving your goals. Overall, assertive communication helps you build a life of fulfillment, the truest measure of success.
What are your challenges around assertive communication?
How do you think communicating assertively can help you be a happier person?
I’ve learned how to overcome obstacles and create a life I love. Check out my new book if you want to discover how I turned disasters into dreams.