I believe assertiveness is important because it allows us take control of any given situation as well as adhere to a set of standards that we set for ourselves. I scored a 40 on the Self-Assessment Assertive Schedule, which seems accurate considering I’ve been told from multiple people that I’m an assertive person.
For example, when COVID started, and people were panicking and buying up everything from the stores; there was an instance where I was buying supplies at our local grocery store. The shelves at this store have no panel in the middle, so you can see the people in the next shopping isle across from yours. In the isle across from mine, I spotted an older lady turn away from her cart to grab something from the adjacent shelf. She had 2 large cases of bottled water already in her cart, that would have required some effort on her part to load into that cart.
While her back was turned, I spotted a younger man 25-30’s run up and take one of the cases of bottled water out of her cart. I immediately ran around the isle to confront him. As he was throwing the case of water into his own cart, I approached him and proceeded to be very assertive with my words and tone. I wasn’t aggressive in the sense of being confrontational, but assertive enough to get my point across. First, about the fact that stealing from a Senior is completely unacceptable; and secondly, that he should take the time to consider someone else’s situation before deciding to put himself in an uncomfortable situation like a fool. Afterwards, I walked with him to return the case of water to the lady.
I know there may be situations where being passive could bear better results, but I’ve known far too many passive people who have been hurt or taken advantage of by others claiming to have their best interest at heart. Since many of our feelings such as love and admiration are positive, assertive behavior can also mean expressing positive feelings. (S.A Rathus, 2019). It’s for this reason I believe that being assertive is almost always a better option than being passive.
Clinical Psychology: A Global Perspective, edited by Stefan G. Hofmann, John Wiley & Sons, Incorporated, 2017. ProQuest Ebook Central, https://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/fit/detail.action?docID=4939411 (Links to an external site.)
Rathus, S. A., & Nevid, J. S. (2019). Psychology and the challenges of life: Adjustment and growth (14th ed.). Wiley Publishing.