thief of time

Wednesday, June 09, 2004

Assertiveness

Why is it that some people are born assertive, while the rest of us are like limp rags and give in, no matter how much we don't want to?

I've read a bit about assertivness and I understand the principles, I think, but to actually exercise it in real life situations is a different thing. I find it very difficult to say a flat out "No", while if I can think of a plausible excuse, then I feel that I've managed to weasle out with a bit of face. The trouble is that I can usually only think of my best excuses after the fact, and once I've given my word I feel obliged to carry through.

I thought it was supposed to get easier when you got older, but I haven't noticed a real improvement so far. The best thing for me is usually when I already have a conflicting prior arrangement.

Maybe one day I'll grow up and learn to say a simple "no" with conviction. Until then, maybe I should just prepare a mental template of excuses and be ready to whip them out at a moment's notice.

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