1. Happier Relationships
Being assertive does not only imply expressing your own thoughts, needs, wishes and desires and trying to get these met but it also implies being considerate, respectful and empathetic of others’ needs. Putting your own needs on an equal level of importance with the needs of other people generates stronger, happier, more tolerant, mutually fulfilling and supportive relationships. Part of assertive communication is being a good active listener. When you actively listen, you become more accessible, open and a better conversationalist. Your discussions thus are more balanced and flow easier. When each side feels like s/he is being respected and heard and when both believe that trust, accountability and loyalty exist in the relationship, then fewer conflicts or arguments emerge and happiness as well as harmony will follow.
Assertiveness is also about sharing positive feedback, complimenting each other, being more generous, helpful,open, kind and loving towards others.It also involves expressing your feelings and being more connected to others. That improves and strengthens existing relationships and will commence new ones. Happier relationships contribute to healthier psychological and physical well-being.
2. Improved Social awareness
In order for you to put others’ needs and wants on an equal level, you also need to be able to observe, understand and respect what the other needs, feels, thinks, wants and wishes. Social awareness enables you to estimate and judge the reactions of others to your assertiveness, thus it improves your ability to adapt and cope in various contexts and with different people.
In being assertive come the realizations that others have similar rights as you do. Even though you might not like it, others have the right to contradict you, say no, refuse your request, criticize you etc. It is easier to accept it when you know that others might be trying to achieve their objectives and stand up to what they perceive as unfairness just like you do. That realization can change your perspective and attitude during the interaction.
Another assertive insight is that others also have the right to emotionally react to the situation as they feel, just as you have the right to express yourself assertively to their emotional reaction. That insight increases the understanding, empathy and sympathy in the relationship. It also opens up the possibility of finding common grounds and the willingness to cooperate or collaborate to achieve mutual benefits and to improve the relationship itself. With time your social awareness ability will improve and thus your communications skills and assertiveness levels increase as well.
3.Improved Self -Awareness
Assertiveness requires self-awareness. Without being aware of your own feelings, thoughts, wishes, as well as, believing that you have the right to ask for what you want, you cannot assert yourself. The levels of self-awareness increase the more you practice of your assertiveness skills. You will increasingly acknowledge and get more clarity about who you are e.g your values, norm, beliefs, personality characteristics, priorities, capacities, uniqueness , dislikes etc . Knowing who you truly are and choosing to stand up for yourself and/or to actively pursue your personal needs and desires is important part of the personal growth process.
The more assertive you become , the more comfortable and confident you will be to express yourself in difficult situations e.g. when given destructive criticism. The more self awareness, the more genuine you will become. With assertiveness also comes more willingness to take responsibility for the possible consequences of your choices, which is also a component of personal growth.
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