It’s easy to make goals. Actually achieving these goals is the hard part. To help your students achieve their goal of becoming more assertive, teach them the following five tips:
- Improving self-esteem
- Standing up for yourself
- Setting positive expectations
- Practicing self-talk
Let’s take a closer look at what it will take for your students to become more assertive.
It’s one thing to know your rights as a person, but it can be hard for some people to actually believe that they deserve those rights. People with low self-esteem or self-worth have a hard time believing that they deserve anything at all. So when it comes time to ask for what they want, they don’t do it. They simply don’t think they deserve it.
Teach your students that the only opinion that matters is your opinion of yourself. Don’t worry about what other people think or say. Stop comparing yourself to people on TV, or even other people in your life for that matter. Comparing yourself to others will only make you unhappy. Improve your self-esteem in order to improve your assertion.
“If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.” That’s what it means to be persistent: To keep trying until you get it right. People with an assertive communication style don’t take “no” for an answer. They know their rights and won’t back down until their needs are met. Teach your students to be persistent until their needs are met, even if it requires a compromise.
Standing up for yourself
Teach your students that they are their own best advocate. Assertive people are not afraid to share their opinion and defend it when someone else questions or criticizes them. They don’t allow others to take from them what is rightfully theirs, whether that be a promotion at work or the last piece of cake at the birthday party. Teach your students to stand up for themselves and to value their own wants and needs.
Setting positive expectations
Teach your students to believe in their goals. After all, you only get out of life what you expect, not what you want. The difference is that if you simply want a certain life for yourself, you will wish your life away, while if you expect a certain life for yourself, you will do what it takes to meet those expectations. We’ve all heard the expression, “I’ll believe it when I see it.” The problem with this mindset is that it doesn’t allow you to believe in your aspirations or goals. If your students don’t believe in their goals, they aren’t very likely to achieve them.
Self-talk is important in becoming assertive because it produces your expectations. In order to “see it when you believe it,” you need to picture the way you want things to be. Practice seeing these things in your mind until they become your beliefs. Eventually, your habits will begin to match your thoughts, bringing your expectations to life. Self-talk will transform your students’ dreams into reality.
Thanks for tuning into our series on teaching interpersonal assertion to your students. If you want to learn more about developing or teaching soft skills, sign up for a free soft skills webinar here.