Assertive HandshakeBeing assertive in both at work and socially is very much important to have a successful daily life. Many times,  just because we are not assertive enough in what we want and what we say, we tend to lose a lot. But, assertiveness doesn’t mean being arrogant. It is about expressing your views politely and clearly in order to  get things done your way.

Assertiveness is not a inborn quality, though some people have it in them since birth. The culture and the way  we are brought up has so much impact on how assertive we generally are. But,with some effort and interest,  everyone of us can easily become more and more assertive. Being assertive also helps in developing other soft  skills like negotiation and management skills. So do you want to know the tips and tricks to become a more assertive person? Plough on…

Be confident:

The first and foremost attribute required to become a more assertive person is confidence. To become more assertive, you first need to believe in you and should be more confident about what you know and what you say. Confidence helps boost self-esteem and has an automatic effect on body language. People always listen to a confident person than to a shy person. Try looking people in their eyes and hold your head high with you chin up when you talk to others. This shows that you are confident about what you are speaking.

Work on your personality:

How you look and talk helps in being assertive to others. Try and dress smart and work on your appearance before meetings. Always dress for the occasion. People listen more to well groomed and smart looking people when compared to their not-so-smart counterparts. In addition to your looks, having a clear and steady voice helps in portraying yourself to be assertive. Do not try to please the other party with a soft and smiling voice when not required. The unexpected happens all the time and never panic and stumble when put in a unforeseen situation. Try to maintain a calm voice and be concise and straight. Remember, everyone knows when you react. But they can only guess when you don’t.

Know the big picture:

To be assertive, you need to know what you want. Understanding the big picture and focusing on the end result helps in being assertive and getting your point through. It also helps to talk yourself out of a tricky situation. A successful negotiator always knows the target he is looking for and always try and emulate the successful personalities. If you are a shy person, try and be prepared with a few phrases and comments that can be used at situations to make you look more assertive.

Do not be over conscious:

Do not try and think how the others would grade you or judge you. This would not let you speak out or ask questions, even if you had a brilliant idea. Have a positive mindset and assume that everyone is going to appreciate what you ask and what you suggest. Try not to react based on the subtle body language feedback you receive from others.

Keep the emotions under check:

Being assertive has its own perils. When both parties are equally assertive, emotions are very high and situation tends to be very stressed. Always keep a check on anger and try not to vent it at the wrong time and at the wrong person. Try to maintain a poker face – a face that shows no reaction whatsoever.

In general, assertiveness should not be confused with pushiness. Assertiveness is more of a give and take when compared to being pushy. Assertiveness is about finishing a deal ideally with a win-win situation for both parties. It is not about winning a negotiation but winning it and still maintaining the relationship with the negotiator.

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