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Stress Management Health Center

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Action Set
Stress Management: Reducing Stress by Being Assertive

Poor communication is one of the biggest causes of stress at work, school, and home. Being unable to talk about your needs, concerns, and frustrations can create stress. Being assertive helps you communicate without causing stress to yourself and others. Assertiveness is a skill that you can learn and put into practice.

In most cases, being assertive works better than being passive or aggressive. With passive communication, you may not express your opinions, feelings, and needs. With aggressive communication, you honestly state your opinions, feelings, and needs, but you do it at the expense of others.

  • Assertive communication means speaking up for yourself in a thoughtful, tactful way. Being assertive helps you express yourself about things that matter to you. This reduces stress by helping you feel more in control of a situation.
  • You can use the steps below to help you define a problem, describe it to others, and express your feelings.
  • Write out your plan to be more assertive, and get comfortable with it. Practice it out loud so you can hear what your assertive statements sound like.
  • To be more assertive, you focus on what you say and how you say it. Using the right body language helps you communicate more assertively.

how.gif How can you be more assertive?

Up Next in This Action Set:
ByHealthwise Staff
Primary Medical ReviewerKathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical ReviewerSteven Locke, MD - Psychiatry
Current as ofMay 3, 2013

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: May 03, 2013
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

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