Being assertive… What does that bring up for you? Here are some tips and thoughts about this topic…
This is a topic that has been coming up A LOT recently – in my own life and in the people around me. I think the keyword that comes to mind when I think of being assertive is TRANSFORMATION… This might surprise you because we don’t associate being assertive with this. And even if we are not going through any life and Self-transformation, we can learn SO MUCH about our Self by exploring how assertive we are… from our life NOW or from our past experiences.
Let me dive in deeper and share my thoughts…
When we are going through life changes and Self-transformation, this is often when we find our Self needing to be assertive…
I often notice that this is when it comes up the most – When we are consciously or unconsciously moving through some kind of transition point… This is often when we can be tested and challenged by the world around d us, to the point where we know that we are being called to show up and/or make a stand in some way. I think when we are challenged and triggered to be assertive, this is actually a great opportunity! As someone who does not find this easy, I know this can be easier said than done, so let me share some things that help me and my clients when this comes up…
TIPS AND REFLECTION QUESTIONS:
✨ Are you going through any changes or transformation in your life – consciously or subconsciously? – Explore this in your next journal entry.
✨ Do you need more inspiration about Self transformation?- Let me share a podcast I did exploring this topic! We explore many tips and inspirations to get through this time!
What are my needs and values in this situation?
Whatever situation you find your Self in right now, return back to what YOU value and need. Sometimes, we can get so caught up and overwhelmed with everything and what other people want that we can often forget what is important to us… And we can also forget to value our own needs fully.
Take a step back from the situation if you can – This is not always possible but if it is a situation where you can take a moment for your Self, I always think it is a good idea. This can be a moment to just connect to your breath at the moment (to calm your mind, heart and body down) and/or this can be some actual space away from the situation. I often find that the initial reaction may not always be the most helpful so asking for space to get back to other people (“Can I get back to you on this?” – “Can we take some time out to think about this?”) can help both sides to figure/digest the situation fully. Obviously, this is different in every situation so I offer this as general ideas.
Your needs and what you value DO matter – Ask your Self – What is important to me right now? Whatever situation that you are finding your Self in, where you need to be assertive, it is time to get clear about what you need and value. Write a whole journal entry on this – explore it as much as you need to. Remind your Self of your worth and why you are being triggered into action right now. This is an opportunity to re-evaluate your needs in a situation, relationship, in your personal or work life etc.
How can I develop healthy boundaries?
When you are clear about your needs and what you value, you can also start to explore what healthy boundaries mean to you – In a situation where you feel you need to be assertive, where have your boundaries been crossed (by the person/situation or by not valuing your own boundaries)?
Healthy boundaries help us respect each other and honour our true Self – If we do not have healthy boundaries, we will most often feel it in some way – For example: By feeling drained all the time, our energy levels might fluctuate, our immune system might be suffering, we feel more stress, our body may hold on to a lot of tension and we might start to feel less confident. Healthy boundaries often affect not just our emotional Self, but it speaks to us through our body and our energy.
TIPS AND REFLECTION QUESTIONS:
✨ What does having healthy boundaries mean to me? – Explore this in your next journal entry.
✨ When was the last time I felt like my boundaries were not acknowledged and respected in any way? – Try using a visualisation meditation to take your Self right back to that moment – Be seated in a quiet space where you won’t be disturbed. Close your eyes and remember that specific moment in your memory. You can ask your Self these questions as you visualise: What do I see around me? What did I feel at this moment? How are my body and mind reacting? How is my breathing pattern right now? Where is my body feeling this (as tension, stress etc)? What is the situation teaching me about my Self?
✨ What are your deepest fears about speaking up and being more assertive? – This may help you see where your own blocks are in having healthy boundaries. Be honest, what are your deepest fears in this situation that may be holding you back from being assertive?
✨ In this situation now, where you need to be assertive, what feels toxic and unhealthy to you? – Ask your Self if you find your Self in an unhealthy and/or toxic environment/situation/friendship/relationship/etc and what is the next action to do.
✨ Do you need more inspiration about healthy boundaries?- Let me share a podcast I did exploring this topic!
How can I practice conscious communication and healthy release?
How often have you wanted to say something but held it in? As empaths and HSPs, we tend to hold a lot within (even without realising it most times). And when something does come up where we know we want to say something and speak out, it can feel safer to hold it instead. What this does can actually be harmful to our Self – We start to build pent up emotions (2nd Chakra) and hold back from expressing our Self and releasing (5th Chakra). We might even feel like our heart space is holding heavy energy (4th Chakra).
What happens when you do finally release what your emotions and thoughts are? I often find that when we have been holding in many emotions, it can actually make it seem and feel much worse. Over time, it builds until maybe the smallest trigger happens and it seems to blow up in an unhealthy way.
TIPS: Finding healthy ways to express our Self and release is important. Let me share some tips:
✨ Get it all out in your journal – If you are feeling anger, sadness, annoyed etc… Let it all out in pen/paper form. Get the initial raw emotions/energy-in-motion out of your system. Your writing does not need to look or sound perfect (no one is reading it – this is your private space). You can free-flow your thoughts on paper… explore whatever thoughts come up and release them on the page. You can be as angry and as rude as you like… again, no one is reading this! The important thing is that you hold space for your Self to let go completely in a healthy private space. Take the edge off the raw emotions and allow them to channel somewhere. After, you might feel better and things might make more sense when it comes to the next step to do.
✨ Release through your body too – If you are feeling like your body is tense, stressed and not open because it is holding on to your challenging emotions… then get physical to release! It will help you ground your Self, get out of your headspace, feel your heart beating and connect to your breath. This is a great time to take a brisk walk, exercise, do yoga, jog, free-flow dance to your favourite music… whatever makes you connect to your physical body and senses again. The last thing you want to do is stay wrapped up in your mind, thinking and going over the same thought cycles that are making you feel bad. Here are some kundalini yoga practices that I enjoy doing to release:
✨ Write a letter to the person – Once you have released some of that energy in your mind and body, it could be a good idea to write a letter as a form of conscious communication. What would you say to that person? How would you express your thoughts and needs in the situation? Sometimes this can be an actual helpful tool to share with others – or it can be a personal tool that we can use to put our words and thoughts together for when we do speak up. A letter can often be good for the person receiving it as they have the chance to digest what you are saying Vs reacting in the moment and not listening.
✨ Having honest and healthy conversations – This is a whole topic and art in itself! Essentially it is the art of holding space, listening and communicating in a way that both sides feel heard. How can you honour your points of view and still listen to the other person? In this situation, do you need a third party to act as a neutral and safe space/person?
Trust Your Self!
A big part of being assertive is getting out of our comfort zone and trusting our Self fully – We need to trust that even when we feel uncomfortable, we can and will get through this. We need to be able to trust our intuition in how we navigate the situation. We need to be able to trust the process and let each step unfold. We need to trust our Self fully in every moment.
TIPS AND REFLECTION QUESTIONS:
✨ What is your intuition telling you at this moment? – Explore this in your next journal entry. Our intuition is a superpower as an empath and HSP. What is it telling you right now?
✨ Where are you being pulled out of your comfort zone? – Bring awareness to which areas and thoughts are challenging you. Often, this is a time where we can break old thought patterns if we observe which ones are holding us back or are not helpful in our own Self-beliefs.
✨ Do you need more inspiration about intuition?- We also have a podcast for this too! Dive in…
I hope these tips inspire and empower you to work on different sides of your Self as we explore being more assertive!