If you’re more likely to be laid back rather than assertive, I think the answer to this question is on more occasions than you’d think! Here are 5 times being assertive makes sense:
- When advocating for anything pertaining to your health: Do your research, understand your symptoms, understand any test results – then write down all your questions and make sure you get all the answers you need to fully understand how the treatment should work and also what you can do for preventative care once you feel better. Ask about diet, exercise, hydration, when to take medicine – every little detail that will help you at home. Be assertive about gaining as much knowledge as possible and getting the right care. If you feel you’re not being heard or getting answers, find someone else to talk to.
- When drawing boundaries around your time, be kind yet assertive: If you find yourself saying yes to everyone just to be nice, practice being kindly assertive. As an example, let the other person know that the particular activity they are inviting you to sounds appealing and you appreciate their thoughtfulness in inviting you, but you have other commitments.
- When taking the time for self care: Being assertive about taking time out for yourself is an extension of drawing boundaries around your time. It is important to be intentional about carving out time in your schedule to focus on what energizes and brings joy. This could be anything from taking the time to read a book to spending time to having lunch with a friend.
- When negotiating a job offer: Check on competitive salaries offered for your experience on websites like salary.com. Negotiate up from your first offer after you’ve established the range you’re working within. Most companies will be expecting you to negotiate so don’t feel embarrassed or shy about speaking up in these instances.
- When saying no to yourself: This sounds funny but sometimes your internal self talk needs to be assertive as well. If distractions or temptations are taking over your headspace, then be assertive about unplugging from whatever is self sabotaging for you. Stop doing what you’re doing and switch to working on your priorities instead.