Assertiveness

By: Sue Dyson

We hear it all the time, we've heard it growing up. You need to be assertive in order to achieve your goals. How important is it, really, to be assertive in your life? It can't possibly be that critical, can it? Well, the answers to these questions are 'very' and 'yes' and I'll tell you why.

Have you ever been in a situation, where someone is doing something you don't like but you don't bother to communicate this to them? It may seem so much easier to say nothing and hold your feelings in. Or it may seem like too much energy to expend.

Have you ever considered the effect this decision may have on the people involved? Are you aware of any feelings of resentment rising either immediately or later? I'll use an example situation of how this may play out in real life.

Monica finally made time to simply sit down and do nothing. She'd been running around all day without a break. As soon as she became comfortable, her friend Suzy dropped by with her rambunctious kids. Normally, Monica would be thrilled to see her friend. Today, after some trying personal events, all she really wanted and needed was some quiet, alone time.

Monica had three choices in this situation.

She could be assertive and state her needs for time to herself. She could choose to remain consciously silent, that is, say nothing and observe her reactions, learning from them. Or she could choose to be unconsciously silent. And yes, making no choice is still a choice.

The problem with the last option, saying nothing and not examining your reaction for doing so, is resentment is bound to build within the relationship. Unless you take care of the energy this resentment creates it will always be there, buried deeper as time passes and this can have detrimental effects on our body, mind and spirit.

Our thoughts are energy. If energy is not expressed, it becomes repressed. It has to go somewhere. In energetic terms, it goes inside and will seek some other way to manifest. It's a force of Nature. When enough repressed energy builds, you may eventually be subjected to dis-ease within your body. This is basically what disease and illness are in our bodies - blocked, unreleased energies.

Referring back to our friend Monica for a moment, if she does not express her feelings to her friend Suzy, as in telling her, gently of course, that she needs time to herself, the energy created by her thoughts will become repressed. This can manifest as illness/disease or even a cold, depression, a bad mood. The energy needs to go somewhere.

Why do we say nothing, anyways? Is it ultimately beneficial to our progression?

We say nothing to avoid pain, to avoid a confrontation. We say nothing to avoid hurting a friends' feelings. We say nothing in a belief that it takes more energy to speak out. We say nothing in a misguided effort to conserve our already depleted energy.

Carlos Castaneda said, "Whether we improve ourselves or stay the same, it takes the same amount of energy." Since neither option saves energy over the other, why not just do it?

We are each in control of our own lives. This privilege comes with a responsibility for our actions. To lead a successful life, we need to challenge ourselves. We need to continuously examine our lives and push our limitations.

We are the only ones who can break through our own limitations. It's our own work to do in this world. So by all means, say nothing, have the appearance of being nonassertive, however, if you choose this path, examine your motiveHealth Fitness Articles, examine your method. Do everything in life on purpose.

Motivation
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