A More Assertive You!

Self Assertiveness means to have self-confidence about what you want and to be able to communicate effectively about it. It does not mean that you always get your own way!

Self Assertiveness also means that you have respect for the right of others to assert themselves as well!

If you are self-assertive:

  1. you are able to cope with most situations with ease.
  2. You realize that your own needs and wishes are different from those of others.
  3. You let yourself make mistakes and acknowledge them, but you know how to recognize and enjoy your success as well.

Are you one that says “Yes” when you mean to say “No”? If you are uncertain, see how many of the scenarios below are applicable to you:

  1. You are afraid of the consequences if you say, “no”; or
  2. You think that someone will hold it against you if you say “no”; or
  3. You are afraid that others might know that you said “no”; or
  4. You may see it as part of your role, example in family matters and are hesitant to say “no”; or
  5. You are afraid of rejection, as you base your worthiness on your actions. You feel good if you say, “yes” and therefore wish to please others; or
  6. You want to be seen in a positive light, even if it means doing something that you do not enjoy; or
  7. You feel indebted to someone. This overwhelms you and if forces you to say, “yes.”


Tips on becoming more self-assertive

  1. Speak in a comfortable rhythm.
  2. Ask for time to think about the request.
  3. Be calm, don’t frown or clench your fists.
  4. Don’t do anything out of pity if it leaves you feeling misused or unwilling.
  5. Acknowledge your feelings: “I have helped you often with this lately. I feel misused.”
  6. Refuse self-assertively as clearly and as persistently as you can and without aggression.
  7. Set your boundaries and communicate this to others: “I am able to come in at 7:30 in the morning to assist you, but I need to leave at 4pm to attend to my own matters.”
  8. You don’t have to explain why you don’t want to do something. You can say no and give an alternative, “I cannot work overtime tonight, but will it be possible to work tomorrow night?”
  9. Maintain eye contact, stand up straight, not too far or too close to the other person. Use your non-verbal communication to radiate self-confidence.
  10. Be aware that asserting yourself is a choice and you have to believe so much in what you say that you are willing to bear the consequences.


Remember that you have the right to say, “no,” and that being a self-assertive and confident person is valuable skill in business.

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