Assertive Behavior

Topics: Aggression, Assertiveness, Human behavior Pages: 7 (1557 words) Published: August 12, 2012


Many people think of someone adamantly standing their ground, pushing for his or her own way, refusing to give an inch. Others think of someone who is generally pleasant but stubborn on certain issues. Assertive behavior is a natural style that is nothing more than direct, honest and respectful while interacting with others. Assertiveness is the most desirable human behavior. It is the behavior required for “win-win” outcomes in negotiation, conflict resolution, family life and normal business dealings. We humans use assertive and nonassertive behavior and aggressive behaviors. These styles create many problems in relationship, business dealings and social interactions. All of us use all three behavior styles through our lives. They are:

❖ Non-assertive

❖ Aggressive

❖ Assertive


Non-Assertive behavior is that type of interpersonal behavior, which enables the person’s rights to be violated by another. This can occur in two ways: first, you fail to assert yourself when another person deliberately attempts to infringe upon your rights. Second, the other person does not want to encroach upon your rights, but your failure to express your needs of feelings results in an inadvertent violation. A non-assertive person inhibits her/his honest, spontaneous reactions and typically feels hurt, anxious and sometimes angry as a result of being non-assertive in a situation. Often, this person relives the situation in their minds pretending how they would do things differently if it happened again.

Aggressive Behavior:

Aggressive behavior is that type of interpersonal behavior in which a person stands up for their own rights in such a way that the rights of others are also violated. Aggressive behavior humiliates, dominates, or puts the person down rather than simply expressing one’s own emotions or thoughts. It is an attack on the person rather than on the person’s behavior. Aggressive behavior is quite frequently a hostile over-reaction or outburst, which results from past pent-up anger.

Assertive behavior :

Assertive behavior is that type of interpersonal behavior in which a person stands up for their legitimate rights in such a way that the rights of others are not violated. It communicates respect for that person’s behavior. Assertive behavior is an honest, direct and appropriate expression of one’s feelings, beliefs, and opinions.

A Comparison of the 3 Types of Behavior

| |Non-Assertive |Assertive |Aggressive | |Characteristics of the |Does not express wants, ideas, and |Expresses wants, ideas, and feelings |Expresses wants, ideas and feelings | |Behavior |feelings or expresses them in |in direct and appropriate ways |at the expense of others. | | |self-deprecating ways. | | | |Your feelings when you |Anxious, disappointed with |Confident, feel good about yourself |Self-righteous, superior. Sometimes | |act this way; |yourself, Often angry, and |at the time and later, |embarrassed later. | | |resentful | | | |Other people’s feelings about |Guilty or superior. |Respected, valued |Humiliated, hurt. | |themselves when you | | | | |act this way: | |...
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