One of the most important social skills that you can ever learn is how to stand up for yourself. If you don't know how to stand up for yourself, not only will this make it hard to get what you want in life, but other people around you will be confused about your goals and motivations.

Standing up for yourself doesn't mean that you have to stop being kind to other people. There's definitely a difference between being assertive and being a jerk! If you know how to stand up for yourself, you'll actually end up being less of a jerk because it's easier to be nice to people when you're not walking around with a lot of unfulfilled needs.

What Is Standing Up For Yourself

silhouette of a woman raising her hand

Image via pexels

When you stand up for yourself, all this means is that you're being a clear communicator. It's about more than getting what you personally want; it's about doing the right thing, even when other people disagree with you.

What Being Assertive Means

two employees discussing

Image via pexels

  • Knowing where your boundaries are and being able to tell people
  • Letting people know what you're willing to tolerate and not tolerate, and truly enforcing that
  • Being honest about what you actually want and need

What Being Assertive Does Not Mean

Man getting angry easily

Image via pexels

  • Getting angry easily
  • Being a jerk
  • Taking whatever you want whenever you want
  • Walking all over others
  • Ignoring people's needs

Knowing how to stand up for yourself means that you're not afraid of other people's opinions. You simply do what's right for you--and what's right for the people in your life--out of principle more than out of the desire to be liked.

Being assertive and learning how to stand up for yourself means that you have a sense of self-worth. You know that you deserve to be treated with respect and you show that to other people through your actions, not just through words. Standing up for yourself means enforcing the boundaries that you've set no matter what.

For example, let's say that you have a boss at your job who is unfair to you. Perhaps she micromanages you and calls you in on your days off. Perhaps she even demands that you do things that are against company policy in order to meet deadlines or make her job easier. Standing up for yourself would mean putting your foot down in this kind of situation and telling her that you simply won't give in to her demands. If someone is being unfair, it rarely pays to indulge them. Not only will they walk all over you, they'll feel braver about walking all over the next person they come across.

This means that sometimes you might find that knowing how to stand up for yourself will put you in an awkward situation. Indeed, there may be times that you have to take social risks to be assertive. You could lose friends or lose favor with someone in a position of power. You'll have to ask yourself, though: is being liked by one unreasonable person worth the headache of having your boundaries crossed again and again?

Over time, you might be surprised to find that people actually like you more if you stand up for yourself.

Why Is It Important To Know How To Stand Up For Yourself?

camera focused on woman's ring

Image via pexels

It's important to know how to stand up for yourself because otherwise, you're unlikely to get your needs met. Most people are not mind readers, so if you simply hang around waiting for them to know what you want by dropping hints, you probably won't get what you want.

This is especially true if you're dealing with a bully or someone who is making all kinds of unreasonable requests. If you don't stand up for yourself early on in your relationship with someone abusive or difficult, whether it's a personal or a professional relationship, you're slowly training the person to not respect you. Their behavior will just get worse because you're basically giving them permission to treat you badly by not defending yourself.

7 Tips On How To Stand Up For Yourself

bearded man looking up

Image via pexels

Like any other skill, being assertive takes practice. You may not know how to stand up for yourself or you may be out of practice. Luckily, there are a lot of practical ways that you can start to cultivate assertiveness in your professional and personal life. Here are some tips that you can implement right away:

1) Look Inside Yourself First

2) Try To Be Objective

3) Be Clear And Specific

4) If Someone Pushes Your Buttons, Tell Them The First Time

5) Remember That “No” Is A Complete Sentence

6) Fill Your Life With Assertive People

7) Remember That Standing Up For Yourself Means Being Your Authentic Self


Confident man raising his hands to the sky

Image via pexels

Knowing how to stand up for yourself can take many forms, and it's a critical skill for both your professional and your personal life. If you're too afraid to be assertive, then you may find yourself trapped in a life that you didn't choose for yourself. The people around you will always have opinions, and some of those can indeed be valuable, but the person who should ultimately decide where your life will lead is you. Don't be so afraid of conflict that you're afraid to be yourself!

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This