Category: Presilient Communication

Assertive Courtesy: A 21st Century Technique for Managing Conflict

I’m sure at some stage in our lives, we’ve all been told that we need to “stand up for ourselves” and not let anyone push us around. Likewise, we’ve all likely been told to be polite, choose our battles or “go with the flow.” In the field of verbal self-defence (alternatively called conflict management, verbal de-escalation, tactical communication, or any other buzz word that suits you) there is an ongoing dichotomy between two of the most common pieces of general advice offered.

1)   Treat the other party with respect

2)   Don’t be too soft! Set your boundaries!

So which is it? Should we be telling everyone to “STOP RIGHT THERE! LEAVE ME ALONE!” or should we apologise for the inconvenience of our presence? Clearly, neither is appropriate in every situation and a middle ground should be established. This article is about that middle ground and how we can use it as a foundation stone of our modern approach to conflict management. read more