Friday, September 30, 2011

Don't Be Aggressive - Be Assertive! Part One

Within every relationship, whether we realise it or not, there is always an underlying  struggle for power.   Strange though it may seem, power doesn't rest with the person who tries to dominate.   True power is your ability to stand up and speak up for yourself.   Power is being able to assert yourself, not being aggressive!

There have been a few concerns amongst my Facebook mums about their child being bullied, or whether their child will be bullied at kindergarten or school.   When you have an aggressive tiny tot then he or she will just try to bully anyone and everyone.  This tendency does change though, so that by about age 8 or 9 (say, third class) the bully targets their victim/s.  I have seen this described as engaging in a "kind of shopping process to find people they can control".

Unfortunately, victims of bullies seem to be those who come across to others as being vulnerable, and who are unable to defend themselves.   This is one major reason why bullies get away with it - they pick on people who are not able to stand up for themselves, or defend themselves.

Sadly, when people radiate this air of vulnerability it does make others feel uncomfortable, and this is apparently a reason for the fact that when someone is being bullied nobody comes to help them.  The victimised child or person has not learned how to assert themselves, which is an essential skill to get us through our lives.

I believe we all need to have or develop the skill of being assertive, so have decided to do a series of small blogs about how we can teach ourselves to be more self-confident and more assertive.   I know from personal experience that lack of self-confidence, low self-esteem, insecurity, anxiety are all traits that we must overcome in order to become assertive.

Finally, for this first blog of a series, remember that being assertive does NOT mean being aggressive or threatening, it just means that you have the confidence to approach others, to speak up for yourself, and to stand up for yourself.

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