Learn to Be Assertive Respectfully

Learn to Be Assertive Respectfully


Excuse me?……. learn to be what ?


Not sure what you mean there?

Well let us  back track to class some 2 days ago…….


It was hand in day for an assignment and a normally good student did not have her work done.  She did not lie …like the dog ate it kind of thing but told me plainly that she just did not have it done.


As I had given the work to the students one week previous and every one of the other students in a class of 23 had their work finished I was concerned as to what was happening.


This  class are studying Personal Development and the student in question did not mind me making a demonstration out of her situation for the rest of the class to analyze so we proceeded to question her as to the reasons why her work was not complete .


As we started our analysis it turned out that the student in question was working for 40 hours a week in a clothes shop to make some money.  The manager had left the shop  and the shop owner was pleading her to work longer to manage the shop.

The result of this was a student who  left college each day ,went straight to the shop and walked in through the door of her house at 10.00 pm each night. No wonder she  had fallen behind in her work.

 As we continued to ask her questions it became obvious that the shop owners were using Quilt to motivate the student to work longer and showing no regard or respect for the fact that she was enrolled in a full time course at college .

Of course the blame can not be laid at the feet of the shop owner as he  is running a business for profit and will look at all the resources to do that.

Where the problem lay was the inability of the student to be assertive and say “No “ respectively that in her given circumstances it was just impossible to work those hours. If she continued then her course at college was going to suffer which was already starting to happen.


Not only was this a case of quilt  holding back this student from being assertive but also a readjustment of the responsibility for running the shop from the owner was passed over to the student .


All of this culminated in a considerable amount of stress in the overload of work commitments.


As we analyzed further we were able to offer suggestions that the student could make to the owner that she could train someone else and maybe job share. However when we were told that this had already been suggested and turned down because of finances it became very apparent that by not being totally assertive about her other responsibilities in her course this student was heading down the path of overload and it was only a matter of time before  she was going to start failing and would drop out of her course.


Sometimes in life no matter how hard it is to assert our decision it is something that we have to do and something we have to do with respect. It is important to remember that Life will still continue and the shop will not collapse if she is not there.


Waking up to the realities of where not being assertive will take this student is probably her main motivator.

Dropping out of her course, failing to move onto University, failing to become a midwife and failing to do the job she has always wanted to do.

As we concluded the lesson it was obvious that a future prognosis of this student’s progress was not difficult to make and the effect of the lesson was to let her see  exactly where she was right now and the consequences of her non assertiveness on the future of her career.

 An assertive person will make sure that his or her thoughts are expressed clearly. A person can be assertive while still being sensitive to other people’s feelings and needs. Assertiveness is important in happiness because some circumstances will push the person to the ground, just like what was happening here. Assertiveness will let oneself and the whole world know that he or she is not happy with something. Assertiveness is doing something about things that need to be changed.

If you have enjoyed reading this article then why not pay us a visit  here


Develop the skill of Gratitude

 Just today in class we were doing an exercise in Personal Development and discussing the skills we have in life now as we start our course in Health and Social care. We journeyed through numeracy, literacy, being a team worker and all the usual skills that would come to the mind of a teenager or young adult.

Just to make life interesting I threw in the word “Gratitude”  and  was not surprised when I got a sea of blank faces… .eh what ?…….what is she on about now?

What´s that ?

Now in all honesty I did not expect them to throw themselves fully into this discussion but what I really wanted to do was plant a seed of though that feeling “gratitude” is a skill  that they should look at and one that they could grow over time .

The ability to be grateful….it´s quite simple really …… We are grateful for what we have.

My purpose in throwing this skill into the discussion is to try and show teenagers that if they stop looking at the blocks and the limitations they place on themselves they can develop a more open view of people of life in general and the world we live in.

In our western society where happiness and contentment are assumed to be connected to wealth and fame it is difficult to main focus and attention on developing this skill of gratitude but it will grow if we can maintain our focus. We are bombarded daily with stories of the rich and famous in the media so its not surprising that children grow up assuming that money somehow makes us successful and happy.

As the discussion in class moved forward and we all started to add the aspects of life we are grateful for it was enlightening to say the least and fun as well  !

We looked at all those aspects in life that we take for granted in our western Society.

Free Health care, a home to live in, feeling secure in our homes and getting a good education were a few that were mentioned.

So does being grateful make us happy?

I cannot give you the answer to that as it is something you have to ask yourself. ……. but I can tell you  a story .

The happiest people I have ever met where the children from the remote African Villages where we grew up in Northern Uganda. They had no shoes on their feet and most of the time had little clothes.

 So what made them happy?

 The rim of a bicycle wheel and a stick to roll it along the ground…..

     Learn to be Grateful!

Free ebook- The Power of Gratitude

Enhanced by Zemanta