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Be Assertive
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Are you assertive? Are you comfortable speaking up when you need or want something,or do you keep your wishes to yourself? There are several reasons why people avoid speaking up. There are also reasons why it is important for them to be assertive and let others know what they want.

People are unassertive for many reasons. One common reason is that they are afraid of ridicule. Many times, a leader, such as a teacher or manager, will ask for volunteers for a project. A person who wants to volunteer for the project may be afraid to raise his hand, thinking that others around him will laugh at him or criticize him in some way. In that moment of fear, there is one thought that apparently never occurs to him: these people that he works with or goes to school with will only be with him for a short time, but the regret of being unassertive will be with him for the rest of his life. He will go through the rest of his life wishing that he had spoken up and wondering how different his life would be if he had.

On the other hand, if people are assertive, life often turns out very different for them. They often succeed at work and manage to have a long and successful career. Those who desire to be managers or to obtain some other more advanced position usually get what they are after. By getting the job that they want, they are relieved of the stress of wishing for what could have been. They can focus on what is and try to be the best employee that they can be.

Assertiveness also applies in social situations. You might go out to lunch with friends, for example. If your friends decide to order a particular item, but you want something different, go ahead and order what you want. Do not feel obligated to order what the group is ordering just to avoid being different.

Finally, it is also important to be assertive in sessions with your academic advisor. You have one plan in mind: take the classes that are required for your degree, graduate as soon as possible, get a job, and get on with your life. Your advisor has something else in mind, however. He wants to keep you around. To keep you around, he may have you take some unnecessary classes. These classes, while they may be interesting, are a waste of your time and money. If your advisor is putting you in a class that you feel may not be necessary for your degree, say so. Do not just blindly accept it.

How can you be more assertive? Speak up. If a project comes up at work, volunteer for it. The project will give you a chance to learn new skills that will be valuable later. If you already possess skills that will be useful for the project, volunteer them. You will be very valuable to your coworkers and your employer. They will likely turn to you when they need advice or help in this area. Stick with what you want, and do not allow yourself to be manipulated. You will be happier, and your life will be better.


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