Assert Yourself! - Body Language

Being assertive isn't all confined in what we say. It's also in how we say it. Our body language has a lot to do with communicating whether we're confident, aggressive, or passive in the message we're sending. Here are 3 key things to keep in mind when practicing assertiveness: Eye Contact

Ever notice someone is much more believable when they're looking you directly in the eye than if they're looking off to the side when speaking? Direct eye contact communicates to others, "I believe what I'm saying and you can too."  

Body Stance

Folding your arms or turning away from a person when speaking gives the impression that you're "closed off" or disinterested in speaking with them. To communicate assertively, keep arms open and to the side, turn your body toward the person you're speaking to and lean in toward the person when your topic is specifically important.

Face It

This concept can be one of the most crucial ones to master. It's very important for your face to match exactly what you're saying. Communicating two different things will leave others confused and you misunderstood. If you're upset, then your facial expressions need to match appropriately. If you're sad, then your face needs to match sadness. Nothing could be more confusing to another person than to have someone smiling as they're telling how angry they feel. Make sure your feelings and face "match".

There are many more ways we can assert ourselves in our daily lives. Please check back in each day this week as we dissect the different ways we can be confident in our communication!

Written by: Tamara Portee MA, LMHC, LCAC

*Tamara enjoys doing marriage counseling, individual counseling, & couples counseling  at Imagine Hope. We also specialize in family counseling, child & adolescent counseling. Imagine Hope serves the Indianapolis area, including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Noblesville, Zionsville, Westfield & Fishers.