It can be difficult for people to understand their rights, thoughts, feelings, needs and desires… and then set these limits with other people without “feeling bad” about having these needs. People trying to lose weight often struggle with being assertive about their new lifestyle.
In order to develop your assertiveness, you must learn to value yourself and your rights. Your rights are just as important as anyone else’s.
- Recognize your rights and protect them.
- Believe you deserve to be treated with respect and dignity at all times.
- Stop apologizing for everything.
Identify your needs and wants, and ask for them to be satisfied:
- Don’t wait for someone to recognize what you need. This may never happen.
- Understand that to perform to your full potential, your needs must be met.
- Find ways to get your needs met without sacrificing the needs of others in the process.
Acknowledge that people are responsible for their own behavior.
- Don’t make the mistake of accepting responsibility for how people react to your assertive statements (anger, resentment, etc.). You can only control yourself.
- As long as you are not violating someone else’s needs, then you have the right to say or do what you want.
Express negative thoughts and feelings in a healthy and positive manner:
- Allow yourself to be angry, but always be respectful.
- Say what’s on your mind, but do it in a way that protects the other person’s feelings.
- Stand up for yourself and confront people who challenge you or your rights.
Learn to say “NO” when you need to:
- Know your limits and what will cause you to feel taken advantage of.
- Know that you can’t do everything or please everyone. Learn to be ok with that.
It can be difficult to begin to assert yourself, but with time, you will feel so much better emotionally and psychologically… freed up to think more clearly and live within your own potential and your own desires!
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