Assertive communication

Understanding Assertive Communication

Assertive communication is one of the keys to being a confident and effective presenter.

Assertive communication boosts your self-esteem and confidence and allows you to be more effective in meetings, presentations and general public speaking situations. It enables you to get more of what you want out of life. Your relationships are more likely to be constructive and other people are more likely to respect you. Being able to express your point of view and your emotions has positive effects on your health.

There are downsides, however. People who may have taken advantage of your previously passive nature are likely to resent your new outlook on life. They may try to sabotage your attempts to be assertive, express anger or try to knock your confidence. They may feel very upset with you, and this could make you feel guilty. Challenging your long-held beliefs and learned behaviour can be frightening and painful, and you may feel out of your comfort zone. It can also be disappointing to learn that, however assertive you are, some things won’t change.

So while you are being assertive as a communicator, do recognise that not all people will respond as you wish and there will be both aggressive and passive members in your audience.

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