Level 4

Training and Exercises Assertiveness

The idea of training in assertiveness is to improve interpersonal communication skills and it starts with being aware of the different ways of communicating with assertiveness resting in between passive and aggressive forms of communication. Being assertive for the first time can seem hard but gets easier with practice but people new to this technique may not always practice it in a balanced way.

Training is a skill that can be taught which is about developing control over how individuals respond in certain situations and as assertiveness is situation specific, the skill is in choosing the right approach. The good news is, the training isn’t an all or nothing technique as it can be done a little at a time, tailored to the client’s needs according to whether they are passive (in need of increasing assertiveness) or aggressive (toning down aggressive behaviours while still being assertive). 

Examples – Training for Passive Communicators:
– Develop ways to deal with aggressive behaviours.
– Protecting personal boundaries at work.
– Finding a voice within a personal relationship.
– Saying No to drugs.
– Easing teenagers out of gang related crime, etc.  

Examples – Training for Dominant and Aggressive Communicators:
– Recognise how other people find aggressive behaviour unwelcomed and unpleasant.
– Establish whether dominant and aggressive people want to change.
– Discuss how excessive dominance and aggression are relationship killers.
– Encourage dominant people to allow others to express their opinions.
– Learn how being less dominant and aggressive improves personal communication.

Practice Exercises:
– Say “No” to unfair requests without justifying it.
– Ask for what you want.
– Telling people what you think and where you stand.
– Make a complaint.
– Give a compliment.
– Handling a criticism or insult.
– Give honest feedback.
– Make a demand.
– Deal with a demand.
– Make an apology.
– Encourage someone to speak up.
– Show appreciation.
– Admit to a mistake.
– Decide on something you want to do.
– Stop unwanted attention.

Practice Examples:
– People talking loudly in a library.
– Someone has been rude or offensive.
– A product you bought is faulty.
– Partner keeps coming home late.
– A boss tells you to babysit for them tonight.
– Someone is telling you to do something you don’t want to do.
– A boss keeps giving you extra work.
– Your blamed for something you didn’t do.
– Someone has become angry with you.
– A colleague calls you silly in a meeting.
– Someone denies your rights.
– A manager keeps saying your name wrong.
– Someone asks for a favour that may not be legal.
– Tell your partner something that irritates you.
– Someone keeps talking over you when you are speaking.