Monday, October 3, 2011

3 Simple Steps to Assert Yourself

Ever feel like you are doormat? Tired of people sqeezing the life out you, taking advantage? Do you want to be more assertive? Here is a tried and true assertiveness communication tool you will find is easy to use and very effective!

Use the three step model, U- F- N.

Begin with an UNDERSTANDING statement. This statement is to prove to the person you are speaking with that you understand where they are coming from, what their needs are. Being able to accurately "understand" another person also makes you a better listener and better communicator. But mostly, when people feel understood, they are more likely to listen to you and be open.

Take this example: You need to return an item at a store and you are having trouble with the customer service department employee.

Start here:

I understand you are doing your job....

Second, tell them how you FEEL.... This statement is to keep it real. Tell the other person how you feel about the situation. This could be anything "I feel, angry, frustrated, resentful, etc." What it ISN'T is "I feel you are a jerk." No, really, it needs to be an emotion.

Now, that said, govern your feelings appropriately. With stangers you don't want to use terms like "I feel wounded." You don't want to scare off the waitress you are confronting.

Back to that item you are returning,

I feel frustrated.....

And finally, express what you NEED from the situation or person.

Keep it short and sweet and very clear. Simply say what you are looking for to resolve the conflict.

I need you to give me a store credit.....

So, put it all together...

I understand you are doing your job
But I am feeling really frustrated
And I need you to give me a store credit.

This model is surprisingly simple and powerful. I cannot even tell you how many of my patients and participants at my workshops have had success with this tool. Give it a go and see how simple it is to get your needs met.

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