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Centerpointe Research

Assertiveness versus Aggressiveness

How can you get a point across and not attack the person to whom you are directing the statement?  If you believe that a person has a right to their own opinion (at least in most cases especially the ones that don’t involve life or death issues), you can accept what they say and their right to say it and then give your point of view on the subject.  For example, I might say, ” I can see how you might feel that what I did was unfair but I felt….”  Most arguments are an attempt to “win” over another person to your point of view or your way of doing things.    You usually can’t change another person’s mind by threatening them.  If it is a “winner – loser” type of argument and only one person holds the power to decide the outcome, the other person may concede but they often won’t be convinced.  It can lead to passive aggression.  See previous post, “Got Ya.”  For example, when I am discussing differences of opinion with another person, I only hope that they will listen to me and I will listen to them with an open mind and each of us will learn something new whether it changes either of our minds or not.

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