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Assertiveness Training

What is assertiveness?

Assertiveness is about getting over to other people what we want them to know.
It does not mean that we always get our own way, although generally we do end up getting more of what we want. The aim is to get to a point where the other person has understood and responded to what we want.

Becoming more assertive involves learning a variety of techniques for doing this - there are always various possible ways of handling any situation assertively. And it is more than this; the aim is for you to actually feel more assertive and self-confident and feel able to use the techniques.

Assertiveness means handling things appropriately, from your point of view. It is not possible to be “over assertive”, that is like being “too appropriate”. Often what people see as being “over assertive” is not assertive at all, it is aggressive behaviour.


Who are these courses for?

The courses are for anyone, men and women, young or old of any background or ability. The courses are entirely suitable both for people who want to be more assertive in everyday situations and people who want to apply the skills in professional contexts. The more varied students are the better the course.

Anyone who has not been on a long (e.g. weekly sessions, 20 – 40 hours total class time) holistic assertiveness training course can benefit from this training. If you have participated in, for example, day or weekend courses or courses that only focussed on techniques you will find there is much more to learn on Donington Training's courses.

Although these are serious courses on which students learn a lot, reading and writing are not required. If you know anyone who may have difficulty reading this who might like to join the class, please tell them about it. If they are at all uncomfortable about this they can contact the tutor in confidence to discuss their needs.

Course content

  • The differences between assertive behaviour and non-assertive (aggressive, manipulative and passive) behaviours
  • Our needs and wants in particular situations
  • Choosing what to assert
  • Developing a range of more assertive ways of handling situations
  • Assertive rights
  • Assertiveness and emotions
  • Ways of responding to emotional behaviour in others

Together with the issues that students bring to the course, probably including:

  • Saying no
  • Asking for what we want
  • Dealing with criticism

Learning approach

These are practical courses: students work with issues from their own lives. In most sessions there is time for students to discuss their own experiences of trying or wanting to be more assertive.

The courses are also about personal development, students will be learning about themselves as part of becoming more confident and assertive.

The courses are light, friendly and supportive. No one is criticised or judged. Everyone is accepted as being equal - including the tutor!

Everything personal is kept confidential, so that students can discuss whatever issues they choose - and only what they choose.

Recommended reading

Not essential but for anyone who likes learning from books Anne Dickson's A Woman in Your Own Right: Assertiveness and You is perhaps the best book there is on assertiveness. Although written for women, it is an excellent book for men as well. They get some insight into a woman's perspective and the have the additional learning experience of working out how it applies to them as men (it all does).


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