“‘Assertiveness involves advocating for yourself in a way that is positive and proactive,’ said Joyce Marter, LCPC, psychotherapist and owner of Urban Balance, LLC. It also means being clear, direct and honest, she said.
For instance, if you’re upset with your boss over your performance review, you’re able to express your opinion in a diplomatic and professional way, she said. Again, this is very different from the other styles. If you’re passive, you might swallow your feelings and become resentful, which can chip away at your self-esteem and boost stress and anxiety, she said. If you’re aggressive, you might curse out your boss and quit. If you’re passive-aggressive, you might call in sick and give your boss the silent treatment, she said.”