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Assertiveness with LADDER
Merlin Mann | Sep 15 2005
I’ve been enjoying reading The Relaxation & Stress Reduction Workbook, which is a very useful tour of popular methods for getting it together, including introductions to meditation, thought stopping, and deep breathing among many others. It also includes a great little chapter on assertiveness, which—like many people, I suspect—I’ve always equated with acting like a jerk.
Turns out assertiveness is the alternative to either aggressiveness or passivity, in which you learn to stand up for what you want without either being trampled or disrespecting others. It’s a way of having firm, neutral, “fair fight” exchanges with people whenever something is in dispute.
Unfortunately, I’m not picking up assertiveness very quickly—I still tend to oscillate dramatically between aggressive and passive in most of my dealings with people—but I do like the idea of finding fair and unemotional ways to resolve conflict. This Mind Tools page includes a good summary of the LADDER method originated by the Bay Area authors of the workbook.
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