Presented by: Dr. Dawn-Elise Snipes
Executive Director, AllCEUs
Counseling continuing education credits can be earned for this presentation at https://www.allceus.com/member/cart/index/product/id/34/c/
~ Define Assertiveness
~ Overcoming the Stress Barrier
~ Overcoming the Social Barrier
~ Overcoming the Belief Barrier
~ Reality Check
~ Nonverbal behavior
~ Giving your opinion
~ Giving constructive (not critical) feedback
~ Making requests without trying to control
What is Assertiveness
~ Assertiveness means stating your feelings, wants and needs
~ With ownership
~ With conviction…. (but…I don’t know…)
Why is Assertiveness Important
~ When you are passive or aggressive, your feelings wants and needs are often not heard
~ This lead to feelings of:
The Stress Barrier: Fight, Flee or Freeze
~ Becoming assertive is stressful
~ You have to change the way you interact with others
~ Others have to change the way they interact with you
~ In the past when you were in a stressful situation did you withdraw? Become aggressive? Shut down?
~ The stress response is designed to protect you
~ Ignoring the urge to fight or flee is extremely difficult until assertiveness has proven itself.
The Social Barrier
~ People in your social circle expect you to act and react a certain way.
~ Changing your behavior confuses other people
~ Our egocentric society leads people to expect that if you change your behavior, it has to do with THEM
~ People strive for consistency.
~ If you used to be aggressive, they may interpret the change as depression, disengagement or exploitable weakness
~ If you used to be passive, they may interpret the change as rejection and push away
The Belief Barrier
~ Reality is 90% perception and 10% fact
~ Our interpretations greatly influence our reactions
~ What influences interpretations
~ Vulnerabilities (pain, exhaustion)
~ Prior learning experience
~ Transference and overgeneralization
~ The other person’s nonverbals
~ Failure to be assertive stems from:
~ Prior efforts to be assertive being punished
~ Fear of rejection
~ Need for external validation
~ Checking your automatic or current beliefs against reality
~ What is my perception of what is going on?
~ What evidence do I have for and against this perception?
~ What were the words?
~ What were the nonverbals?
~ How valid is that evidence?
~ Am I reacting to feelings or FACTS?
~ Am I magnifying or catastrophizing?
~ Have I stated my feelings and needs objectively and clearly?
Giving Your Opinion
~ We all have opinions.
~ Opinions are qualitative (good, bad, fair, helpful…)
~ Opinions are a combination of the current situation PLUS prior learning
~ Own your opinion
~ Good opinions are based in fact. (…because…)
~ Support your opinion with evidence
~ Did you like that movie?
~ Yes (or no), because…
~ If the opinion is negative, identify what you would change
~ Respect other’s opinions
~ Constructive feedback is objective and measurable.
~ Lazy vs. has failed to complete his assignments for the past 3 weeks
~ Stupid vs. Has difficulty with following basic instructions for opening his register
~ Provides information that a person can choose to address and/or presents an actionable problem
~ Provide possible solutions and develop an action plan.
Making Requests (win/win)
~ State the reason for your request
~ “I am feeling exhausted and overwhelmed trying to manage all of these tasks.”
~ “I recognize that as a result my work product has gone down.”
~ “I am having difficulty prioritizing”
~ State what you need in the situation
~ “I need help prioritizing which of these tasks is most important to you.”
~ “Or, I need some assistance so I can produce a quality product in a timely manner.”
~ Assertive communication means stating your feelings, thoughts and needs in a respectful, but owning manner
~ Social barriers are those created when you start acting differently than those in your social circle expect.
~ Belief barriers are those automatic thoughts and schemas that help interpret events based on past learning
~ When being assertive, it is best to provide your opinion or observation supported by facts.
~ When making requests, it is ideal to create a win/win by pointing our what is currently wrong, what needs to happen and how that will benefit both parties.