Assertive Resistance

Overcoming obstacles in business and in life with an aggressive, passive and assertive outlook.

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A challenge will only become an obstacle when you surrender to it – when you accept that there is nothing you can do to get past it. When you get to a bridge-of-life that’s under construction and decide to turn back instead of completing it, you are never going to know what’s on the other side.

Don’t get me wrong, sometimes a detour could lead you to wonders you never thought you’d see, but it’s not just continuing your journey that is important – no. It’s the experience of building that bridge that counts for something and will come in hand later.


In Business:
Let’s apply it first from a business aspect: You own your own business and you have some staff that is less than motivated. You have the standard 3 prong approaches: aggressive, passive and assertive. We discussed something like this about shop owner Jack in my fishing post a while back.

Aggressive: Terminated or disciplinary action. It’s easy and direct. In some industries you may have a wide variety of qualified candidates waiting to get in. This could leave you with little reason to develop loyalty to your employees with the feeling of ‘i can find someone else’. That is always true, no one is indispensable, but it may not be a revolving door you want your business to become.

Passive: Doing nothing or letting it slide. I know what you’re thinking – why would anyone do this because it would absolutely hurt their business? To that, let me ask you: how often you have had to carry the weight of a coworker who wasn’t very invested? You know, that guy who takes extra long cigarette breaks and is always on vacation. We’ll call him Brian. Doing nothing only costs you as an employer if someone else isn’t picking up the slack.

Assertive: The most difficult ground to discover, and it varies for every associate in every industry. Performance bonuses have diminished much with many companies. Raises maybe competitively based leaving a guaranteed number of workers without any yearly raise. What can we do to keep people on track? Start simply – praise. Every one likes to hear they are doing their job well, especially when they are. Say thank you – for doing their job. They could’ve been Brian. There is a laundry list of personalities that don’t want to be bothered, but contests can be fun like ‘whoever has the most sales gets a best buy gift card’. The only wrong approach to being assertive is to become passive or aggressive, keep experimenting until you find what works for you and your crew.


In a Relationship:
I’m sure most have been involved with or witnessed both very successful or stressful relationships. The difference can be as simple as chemistry or as complicated as a reality show. You might be surprised or else stunned by it’s redundancy, but communication can go a long way. Let’s dive into it.

Aggressive: Ever been or seen a couple screaming at one another? That’s a keen example, but it’s not limited to raising your voice. The examples they might be throwing at each other, from things that happened years ago, are falling on the same deaf ears. They are aggressively pushing their point and ignoring their partner. It can be fueled by nothing but principle and break up families if we aren’t patient enough to address it.

Passive: The couple who doesn’t speak. Each has their own obligations to fulfill to be able to survive, but they don’t engage in the issues. They are as much alone as they are together. One partner, let’s call her Ana, hates when her husband doesn’t do the dishes after she cooks. So she does them and is angry he doesn’t help. This of course might sound trivial, but it happens every night and drives her crazy. She bottles it up and even if she never erupts over it, it certainly takes away from happiness and the relationship.

Assertive: Communication is a great start. If we were only so open and honest with the people we love as we are in other aspects of life, there might not be such a high divorce rate. Make a list when you have a clear mind and before you are in the conversation. Bring up somethings that you would like to see differently with some ideas on how to get there. Remember this communication is going to be a two-way street so be open minded. If you have been bottling things up for a while, your partner may have been too. Be patient, go slow, and be open to changes.  You are talking to the one who holds your heart after all.


I hope this finds you well and that it has given a more conscious eye on even the trivial aspects of day to day. Feel free to message or comment with you challenge and how you overcame it.

With love,

M.C. Grimm


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