Sigmund Freud (a psychoanalyst born in the 19th Century) said that aggressive and passive behaviours can be viewed as defensive responses; our ‘defence mechanism’ when we feel under attack. He said that defensive behaviour is “…behaviour to protect oneself from a perceived threat or attack.” If we feel under attack, we attack back. Either fight or flight. Fight = Aggressive Flight = Passive
11 signs of Aggressive behaviour
5 signs of Passive behaviour
In part 3 - What level of assertiveness would you like? To control your own choices? Not to control others? To defend yourself? Or all of the above?
You know that feeling when you’ve walked away from a situation and thought “I wish I had said …..” or “I can’t believe I said…..”. Even as adults we often find ourselves responding or commenting in a way which might seem out of character. Sometimes we seem to float between aggressive, passive and assertive as we move into different areas of our lives.
For example, I tend to be rather passive in a restaurant. But elsewhere I'm assertive. And occasionally I might be aggressive. It's not ideal and I'm working on it!
We recognise aggression because the physical signs - shouting/swearing/raised voices – are frightening. Aggression makes our pulses race whether delivering it or when on the receiving end of it. It’s an explosively angry behaviour which can trigger from nowhere and lead to great distress.
If, on the other hand, your reactions to situations would be to become quiet and subdued...
On the website www.businessdictionary.com the definition of manipulative behaviour is: ‘behaviour which attempts to control or play upon others' hopes or fears to attain selfish ends while disregarding their aspirations or well being’.
Young children can learn very early how to 'get their own way' by manipulating a situation. For example, by crying, throwing tantrums, stamping feet, yelling, sulking. We accept this as part of understanding boundaries and learning about right and wrong.
As adults we can also be inclined towards this behaviour in (possibly) more subtle ways to get our own way without using assertiveness skills.
Here are some outward signs of manipulative behaviour:
Recognise anyone you know?
Your assertiveness and enquiring responses will soon squash the Manipulator into more honest behaviour. Want to to know more? Call me on 07763942771 to discuss the Assertiveness...