Last weeks top tips got a lot of interest. I was chatting on the topic of how to remain assertive when your hormones are raging. It also triggered some questions too, one of which I’ve chosen to focus on this week…
….how to assertively deal with someone else who is being hormonal.
I see why this one has come up. Before you jump to any conclusions though, it wasn’t brought up by a man, it was a number of other women – interesting.
This is a bit of a touchy subject as the question itself is based on a bunch of assumptions. It also questions the frame of reference the ‘viewer’ of the behaviour has as this could taint and squew the perception. Sometimes what you see and therefore interpret is a bit like a mirror – it says more about you than it does about the other person, so it’s important to consider that first and foremost.
Anyway, I’m going to proceed and respond to this question on the basis that we know for sure that the other person is hormonal – either pre-menstrually or menopausally (not sure they’re actual words, but hey! you know what I mean)
Ok so, first tip – remember that the first rule of Assertiveness is consideration. We must sit on the courage until we’ve done due diligence here. If you’ve ever done any NLP (neuro linguistic programming) then you may have come across a term called perceptual positions. It means basically to view the situation through another lens – the other person and then objectively as if you were an observer before returning to your own position. When we do this we see a different perspective and that can alter how we choose to behave when we understand. You’ll be amazed what you notice and how differently you feel. Typically you’ll feel more compassionate and that’s important for tip 2.
Tip 2 is to have clean intent. So, there’s a likelihood that you’re experiencing some difficulty with this person. Maybe you feel they are being dramatic, emotional or irrational for example. The temptation is to say something to them as you think their behaviour is unacceptable (as the case maybe) but here’s the thing….if you’re going to have the conversation to get stuff off your chest and put them in their place then my advice? Turn around sharpish, fuck off somewhere and have a word with yourself and avoid returning until you can show up with the intent of ‘helping’ that person, to speak to them for their benefit ONLY, not yours. You should be coming from a place of kindness and support.
Once you can do that then skip on over to top 3.
Tip 3 is in being skilled with any feedback you want to share. Make this a really curious conversation first and foremost, not going in like a bull in a china shop! It should be two way and you listening a lot. It can be useful to state your intent if you feel a bit wobbly in how skilful your feedback likely is. But when it gets down to it, make sure you’re super specific, that your focused on behaviour, not identity or generalised, big sweeping statements, you share the impact of that behaviour and that you check how it lands and offer to help any way you can. So it might sound something like this…….
“Hey Sarah, are you ok? You don’t seem yourself? (Let her talk)
I noticed in the team meeting today that you got a bit flustered when you were presenting and when Simon asked you some questions you said XXX which was a bit patronising and it’s unlike you – what was going on for you? I’m sharing this with you as a friend and to offer a place to vent or chat if you ever need it, would you like to grab a coffee?”
Now, this is just one example to show how it could all piece together and in this scenario would work if there is an established relationship. It may not suit all scenarios and the tone and intent is critical.
I’d love to get your thoughts, stories and and challenges you’re facing to see if I can offer any help or guidance. Drop me a comment or a DM…..