Are you wondering how to be assertive in relationships? Is yours struggling, and are you worried that your lack of assertiveness may be part of the problem?
I have built a business around helping people who are struggling in relationships. Unfortunately, there are many people struggling because relationships are really, really hard. More than any other reason, I believe lack of assertiveness is the basis of many relationship issues for both men and women. Fortunately, many of us have learned the skill of assertiveness in relationships and have figured out the best thing to do.
So, let me share with you my secrets about how to be assertive in relationships.
1. Have self-awareness.
People who are assertive in relationship are people who know themselves and know what they want in a relationship.
When I was married, I knew I was unhappy, but I didn’t know why. When we went to marriage counseling, there was always discussion around the nebulous cloud that was my unhappiness, but we never attacked it directly because I couldn’t define what it was.
Since I have become more self-aware, I have realized what happiness means to me – to be noticed, to be heard, to be valued, to be seen. When those things happen, I feel loved and I am happy.
If you aren’t self aware, take some time to develop that personality trait. Take stock of what is important to you in a relationship so that you know what to ask for when the time comes.
2. Be self-confident.
People who are assertive in relationships are very often self-confident. Why? Because to be able to ask for what you want in a relationship, you have to believe in yourself, in your self-worth.
I know many people who are self-aware who know what they want in a relationship, but who don’t ask for it because they don’t believe themselves to be worthy. And if you don’t ask, you don’t get.
Taking stock of why you are worthy, in the world and in love, will get you a long way towards being assertive in a relationship and getting you the love that you seek.
3. Communicate clearly.
So, let’s say you know what you want and you believe that you are worthy of getting it, but you have no freaking idea of how to ask for it.
You are there, sitting across from your person, having a heart to heart, and when the time comes to ask for what you want, you just can’t find the words. And if you don’t have the words to ask for what you want, how are you going to get it?
Are you a good communicator? If you are, great! If you aren’t, find a friend or a life coach, and have them work with you to find the words to ask for what you want. It’s not as hard as it seems – it’s a skill that needs to be cultivated, just like any other.
4. Use your intuition.
My husband used to say that he would never be able to have an affair because my Spidey sense would just know. I used to laugh, but I know that it’s true – it was hard for him to get away with anything, good or bad, because my intuition was usually dead on.
People who have a strong intuition that they can rely on are usually excellent at being assertive in relationships. Why? Because people who are intuitive trust their gut. They trust that they know what they want and believe that their instincts around others are dead on.
By having faith in oneself and one’s perceptions of others, it is easy to speak up and ask for what you want because you truly believe.
If you don’t already, listen when your gut tells you something. If you have a ‘feeling’ that something is off, trust that feeling. Don’t rationalize it away. Speak up!
5. Be resolute.
Being assertive in relationships is simply impossible without being resolute.
Do you know that person who just can’t make up their mind? Perhaps you see them in the mirror.
They know that they want something but can’t quite put their finger on what it is. As a result, when they try to ask for what they want, they fail because there is no conviction behind their words.
How does one cultivate the personality trait of being resolute? Start small. Choose one thing that is important to you and do it, no matter what. Set your intention and don’t let anything get in your way.
Once you see the power of what happens if you set your mind to something, you will want to practice it in all areas of your life.
Learning how to be assertive in relationships is very important and can be a challenge, but one worth meeting.
In this crazy world, we need to identify what it is we want, we need to believe that we are worthy, we need to be able to speak to what those things are, we need to trust our gut and we need to be resolute in making it happen.
Don’t spend your life and love allowing things to just happen, just hoping for the best. Decide what you want in a relationship and go for it.