Stop Being Passive Aggressive

Photo by Ray Hennessy on Unsplash

Stop being passive aggressive. Be aggressive. There’s way too many people around this world that can’t say what they want, get what they want, and strive for more than just their basic needs. Assertiveness is a trait that has lost its way, and instead in its place are people who lack conviction and confidence.

Recently I ran into someone who had something to say to me, something they wanted me to change. Instead of asking me directly, he just proposed a question that may seem polite at first, but was really more annoying and an indirect way of expressing his feelings. In the past, I would have answered it and been as respectful as I could (which I still tried to do). However, it bothered me that he wouldn’t get at what he was trying to say, even though I know exactly what he wanted to say. So I waited. I stared him down, patiently awaiting his continuation in silence while he stumbled over words. I eventually answered, but it was after a long and somewhat awkward exchange of no speaking. I wanted him to say what he needed to say, but he couldn’t.

Passive aggressive behavior takes longer to solve problems, is more unhelpful, and is actually less polite in the long run. When you try to go around what you want to say, you begin repeating that in the rest of your life and begin a life of indirect motives. In a way, it’s a life of laziness.

You should be aggressive. You should speak the way you need to in life to get what you want and act the way you want. Your presence should display confidence and assertiveness without being disrespectful or rude. It is a balance, a different way of viewing aggressive behavior. Think of being aggressive less as being a ravenous wolf killing animals, and more as a hungry leader who does what is best for himself in his environment. Good leaders take charge and make decisions for what is best for everyone involved around them.

Now to clarify, you don’t necessarily need to respond the way I did to passive aggressive statements. You can speak right away and guide the person to what they want to say to you. You don’t have to be direct 100% of the time, although I will say it helps in most situations. Saying what needs to be said solves conflicts quicker and gets to what you want in life on a straightforward highway instead of a windy backroad.

At the end of the day, it is up to you to decide who you want to be. Some situations may call for a less direct tone and a bit more of a polite edge, but I think you’ll find that a lack of assertiveness will cause a lot more problems than benefits. If you don’t take your life for yourself, someone else will.

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I am a writer, teacher, and lifetime kid. I post 2–3 articles every week on self-improvement and inspiration. Check out my writing and book @ paul-keefer.com

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Paul Keefer

Paul Keefer

I am a writer, teacher, and lifetime kid. I post 2–3 articles every week on self-improvement and inspiration. Check out my writing and book @ paul-keefer.com

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