Assertive Behaviour Spotting

Assertive Behaviour Spotting


Recognising Assertiveness, Non Assertiveness and Aggressive Behaviour


Non Assertive Assertive Aggressive
Wavering Steady and firm Very firm
Tone may be singing or whining Tone is middle range, rich and warm Tone is sarcastic sometimes cold
Over -soft or over warm Sincere and clear Hard and sharp
Often  dull and monotone Not over-loud or quiet Strident, maybe shouting, rises at end
Quiet, often drops away at end Medium, but continues same volume throughout Very loud, gets louder at end



Non Assertive Assertive Aggressive
Hesitant and filled with pauses Fluent, few awkward hesitancies Fluent, few awkward hesitancies
Sometimes jerks from fast to slow Emphasises key words Often abrupt, clipped
Frequent throat clearing Steady, even pace Emphasises blaming words Often fast



Non Assertive Assertive Aggressive
‘Ghosts’ smiles when expressing anger, or being criticised Smiles when pleased Smile may becomes ‘wry’
Eyebrows raised in anticipation (e.g. of rebuke) Frowns when angry otherwise ‘open’ Scowls when angry
Quick – changing features Features steady Eyebrows raised in amazement/ disbelief
Jaw open frequently Jaw relaxed Jaw set firm, chin thrust forward



Non Assertive Assertive Aggressive
Evasive Firm but not a ‘stare down’ Tries to stare down and dominate



Non Assertive Assertive Aggressive
Hand-wringing Open hand movements (inviting to speak) Finger pointing
Hunching shoulders ‘Measured pace/ hand movements Fist thumping
Stepping back Sits upright or relaxed (not slouching or cowering) Sits upright or learns forward
Covering mouth with hand Stands with head held up Stands upright head ‘in air’
Nervous movements which distract (shrugs and shuffles) Calm movements Strides around (impatiently)
Arms crossed low for protection Arms uncrossed Arms crossed high (unapproachable)

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