How to be more assertive
Being assertive doesn't have much to do with being an introvert. Assertive communication helps you get your message across in a clear, respectful, and direct manner regardless of being an introvert or an extrovert. Assertive communication is a valuable skill to have. It helps you lead with confidence and enables groups to work more effectively as a team. Additionally, assertive communication reduces stress, anger, and depression. Good communication skills provide mental clarity and better relationship with others. Assertive communication can be important in all aspects of life, not just work. Here are some tips to help you feel more assertive.
Understand your value: what benefits do you provide to your organization, and why do they matter? Create a detailed list and be ready to offer it up if requested. Highlight your strengths and weaknesses, be realistic, and avoid internal criticism. If you want to be taken more seriously, you need to know your value.
Expect discomfort: to set proper boundaries you won't always be comfortable in the process. Don't give in, some might use your discomfort to take advantage of the situation. You don't have to step back because of someone's negative reaction. That could very well have more to do with them than the boundary being set.
When you know that being assertive is tied to your self-worth and self-esteem, you can then start to move forward and think about your needs and boundaries and if they line up with your values.
There is also a fine line between being assertive and being aggressive. Being assertive is about being respectful to those around you while still valuing your thoughts and opinions and finding harmony between the two while standing your ground. It's not about taking full control, micromanaging, and disrespecting those around you. Stating you disagree with an idea and explaining why you got there is a much more effective way of communicating than calling someone's idea stupid, crazy, or dumb.
Personal growth will also lead you to be more assertive. The more you learn, grow, and practice, the more understanding of your character you will gain, allowing you to draw attention to your value. This will give you more confidence to speak when appropriate, appropriately.
Remember to give yourself time to adjust and be patient as you learn to be more assertive and set boundaries.