Sometimes we might think we’re behaving in an assertive way, when really our words and actions come across as more aggressive than we realise.
This is especially true for people new to assertiveness, who sometimes end up being too assertive and in extreme cases can be seen as bullies by their coworkers.
Luckily for us we’re able to pay attention to our own actions and if necessary, change them. If we find we’re becoming aggressive when dealing with a colleague, we’re able to take a second and calm down, or walk away from the situation before revisiting it later on.
If you find yourself expressing any of the following behaviours when dealing with coworkers it’s time to think of an alternative approach.
Aggressive behaviour can be identified through body language by:
Closed or clenched fists
Hands on hips
Raised voice or shouting
Aggressive behaviour can also be identified by:
Knowingly putting your own needs above those of someone else
Feeling guilty about your words or actions after the event
Alternatively, assertive behaviour is characterised by body language which is:
Straight up, firm yet relaxed
Good eye contact
Facing the person you are speaking to
Speaking loudly enough to be heard by everyone you are addressing
Speaking fluently and with confidence
Open hands or palms
Assertive people are honest about how they feel, are direct and are expressive without overstepping the boundaries or rights of other people.
Staff Training presents Assertiveness Training nationwide. Email info@StaffTraining.co.za for more information.