>On Being Assertive

>If you want to be less depressed this winter, try some assertiveness!
Some of us even behave as if we need to apologize just for being ourselves!
While we want to be friendly, diplomatic- we also want to let people know how we
feel,  and what we want and need.

Here are some assertiveness tips from Jay Cleve, PhD in his book: Out of the Blues:

1. You have a right to your feelings. Feelings do not have to be justified. As long as you
do not blame others for your feelings, you have a perfect right to feel confused, ambivalent,
and inconsistent.
Feelings are not right or wrong, good or bad, they just are!
2. Give yourself permission to feel things, even if they are negative sometimes, you need to
3. Take responsibility for your feelings by using “I” statements: ” I feel upset when you
say nasty things to me.!”
Don’t say- ” You make me angry!”
4. Make an honest attempt to get in touch with your feelings. Acknowledge them, explore them- do not deny or  suppress them
5. Be willing at times to be spontaneous in your expression of feelings, but not in an attempt to attack or change another person
6.  Be willing to risk rejection in order to experience and verbalize unacceptable or unpopular feelings.
When you are honest- you own  your feelings
7. Always remember that you have a right to your feelings, beliefs and values.

8. Recognize that there is always going to be some conflict in all relationships!

Taken in part from: Cleve, J (1996) Out of the Blues: Strategies that work to get you through the down times. New York, NY. Berkley Books