|“You” Message||Reworded as an “I” Message|
|You talk too loudly.||I have sensitive hearing.|
|You should send out an agenda.||I’d like to know what we’re going to discuss in the meeting tomorrow, so I can bring the necessary information with me.|
You can use this same type of message when you are giving feedback about someone else’s behavior. Again, the feedback should be non-judgmental, but it should be specific.
There are four steps to this message.
Remember: When you are stating feelings, state feelings directly, not evaluations or solutions.
Now that you have the tools to improve your assertiveness level, you may be pleasantly surprised at how readily others accept and respect your assertiveness. You must be prepared, however, for the occasional tough cookie who responds aggressively with verbal attacks, put-downs, or demands. When this happens, here are some techniques you can use to respond to the situation:
Speak assertively, but with empathy, to show the other person you have received their message.
Repeat your assertion by repeating your original response, while also responding to legitimate points made by the other person.
Use active listening and open questions to clarify your understanding of the other person’s position.