There are times when we become too passive due to our inability to express ourselves. Or things become too aggressive at other times. Eminent Psychiatrist Dr. Devendra Save tells you to assert yourself, in such situations.
Dr. Devendra Save says, “Communication problems arise when you’re too passive (not speaking up for yourself) or too aggressive (yelling, criticizing, or other expressions that are disrespectful or hurtful to others). Neither passive nor aggressive communication gets your message across or your needs met. If you’re a people-pleaser, you probably tend toward being too passive and/or passive-aggressive. You have trouble saying no, are agreeable and compromise your own needs to make others happy. You stay quiet to avoid conflict. But sometimes, anger and resentment build and that’s where passive-aggressive behaviors show up. It’s an indirect way of expressing anger, such as the silent treatment, that we use when it feels unsafe to directly express ourselves.”
He continues, “Assertive communication, on the other hand, is direct, calm, and respectful. It allows us to directly express our feelings in ways that don’t hurt or violate the rights of others. At times, assertiveness comes across as thinking too much about ourselves and often as selfish too; especially by people, who are passive by nature. They feel that expressing themselves and their true feelings will make them look like a person who only thinks about himself. However, this is what needs to be changed. Assertiveness is the middle ground between passive and aggressive. Using ‘I statements’ is a good method of assertive communication. For example: ‘I feel disrespected when you’re late to our meetings. I’d like you to arrive on time.’ When you start a sentence with an ‘I feel’ phrase, it sets the stage for others to listen to you without becoming defensive.”