A few tricks on how to handle assumptions and status
ABOUT THE WORLD OF ASSUMPTIONS
If you are not that assertive, and would like to be more, you will inevitably hit that road. But what is an assumption? An assumption is a belief about something without having had any evidence of it. Let's make an example:
You get the courage to speak up about something and then your mind tells you “what if?” – "If I tell my manager that I’m not 100%, he might not trust me to carry on that project. Or if I tell him I am not happy, he will fire me". And you think this is your future/destiny and an absolute truth.
What if it’s all an assumption? You might be ready to be surprised, and actually find yourself with a new opportunity: there are indeed rewards for those who speak and open themselves. You just don’t know them because you haven’t tried. How about trying?
Let’s do this exercise - either in front of the mirror or writing it down.
Think of something that you have always wanted to tell someone, either at work or professionally.
Imagine the scariest thought possible and write it down on a piece of paper or say it out loud. For example: I have a constant back pain and the doctor told me to work from home for a week. I fear that if I tell my manager, he will say NO or worse, will say yes but will secretly exclude me from the current project.
Now imagine your boss is there, elaborate your fear and be honest. Say: "I want to carry on this project and I have invested my energy and time on it. I would not like my health situation to interfere with that, however it is true that working from home would reenergize me. I hope you understand and this won’t change things. I’d like to keep transparency on this".
How does it sink in? Do you feel you have the right to speak? Of do you feel a "status" problem?
This can happen.
ABOUT STATUS AND ASSERTIVENESS
How is status affecting our ability to be more assertive and authentic as well? Well it is, and we do not realize it sometimes.
First of all, what is status? Status is the position of an individual in relation to others. This position can be perceived as higher or lower.
Many of us, especially at work, or with people we consider smarter or more beautiful or with more power, behave like we have no right to talk or to express ourselves. We go like “ who am I to give my opinion about a certain topic? I don’t have a PhD or a big job?” and this keeps us under the surface for a long time. And can place us in a position of not having anything to share, despite our inner richness. We believe in our own words and stop being assertive, as if we had nothing to give.
On the other hand, if we feel superior to other people or in a position of power like management, and we feel that we are entitled to say more just because, even though we have nothing to say, this can trigger an internal crisis. If we don’t mean the things we do and just use our position to manipulate other thoughts or behavior, sooner or later our own awareness will get back to us, asking for the truth. It can come in a form of a depression, physical pain, headaches, simply being tired.
Here an exercise for both situations. Take a pen and paper. If you think that your status is lower, if you think you have nothing to say, write 12 times and repeat it for 4 days in front of a mirror:
I have the right to exist. I’m not here on earth to meet someone else’s expectations
If you think your more than others, please write down and remember the following:
Since there is no one like each one of us since the beginning of time, each one of us incomparable. Not more, not less.
Stay assertive! I hug each one of you!
You can watch this very tutorial on this youtube link, and learn how to manage assumptions and status related issues: