19 Phrases Confident People Use When They Want to Be Assertive But Not Rude

Whether you are working in a group to solve a problem or you’re simply trying to improve your confidence in communicating with family members, it’s important to use respectful, assertive language that won’t offend others. These 19 phrases will allow you to politely communicate your perspective without being rude.

“I Understand Where You’re Coming From”

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According to Psych Central, “the chief difference between assertiveness and aggression is how well you take your needs, and someone else’s needs, into account.” By using this phrase, you show the other person that you empathize with their point of view and encourage a two-way conversation.

“I See It Differently”

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By sharing with others that you hold a different view, you encourage diversity of thought and open up the floor for everyone to share their own perspectives or beliefs. This creates a feeling of mutual respect, even when you disagree with one another.

“Let’s Find a Common Ground”

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When you face disagreements or differences with someone, finding common ground is a good foundation to allow you to collaborate on joint projects or problem-solving. It also helps to keep the conversation positive by focusing on solutions rather than conflict.

“I Appreciate Your Effort”

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Acknowledging the hard work and contributions of others, even if the outcome isn’t as you had imagined, is an important part of creating a respectful working relationship. This sets a positive tone before you offer any constructive feedback and strengthens your relationships by valuing others’ input.

“I Respect Your Opinion”

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Validating others’ perspectives helps to foster mutual respect and a stronger connection between you. According to Masterclass, “respecting the person you are communicating with often leads to a collaborative solution and a win-win scenario with both sides getting what they need.”

“I Would Like to Add”

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Great collaborative relationships encourage different viewpoints to build on each other’s ideas and work more effectively together. This phrase is assertive and allows you to add in your ideas as another perspective to consider, rather than disagree with or contradict others.

“Let’s Look at the Facts”

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When conversations get emotional or tense, this phrase helps to shift the discussion to objective information rather than personal opinions. By taking it back to the facts, you’ll encourage a rational, informed approach to decision-making.

“I Believe We Can Both Agree That”

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This phrase is a great way to identify common ground as a foundation for a discussion, and it reduces defensiveness by highlighting a shared belief or goal. SkillPath says that ‘I’ statements keep assertiveness polite, and “saying ‘I think’ or ‘I don’t agree’ sounds less accusatory than ‘You’re wrong’ or ‘You need to do your share of the work.’”

“My Understanding Is”

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Clarifying your perspective or understanding of an issue will assertively bring tense or emotional conversations back to the facts without dismissing others around you. This allows for correction between you or redirection within the conversation to a more constructive topic.

“I Suggest We”

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Offering a solution or proposal in this way will assertively direct the conversation to collaborative decision-making without imposing your thoughts on the group. It encourages others to consider your suggestions and work to solve problems collectively.

“Can We Explore This Further?”

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Showing interest in a conversation topic is a great way to help build stronger connections with others around you. This phrase signals that you want to learn more and encourages free dialogue, demonstrating your open-minded approach to problem-solving.

“This Is What I Need From You”

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By clearly communicating your needs or expectations, you ensure others understand what you’re asking for in a respectful manner. CABA says that being clear is an important part of being assertive. “This involves asking for what you want in an open and straightforward way. State your feelings clearly without directly or indirectly demeaning somebody else.”

“I’m Open to Suggestions”

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It’s important to show others respect by listening to them and actively considering their ideas and opinions, and this phrase shows you are open and willing. This helps to create a participatory environment, allowing others to share their ideas freely.

“Thank You for Sharing Your Thoughts”

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When you’re working in a group setting, it’s important to show appreciation for others’ contributions and perspectives. This creates a positive, collaborative environment that encourages open dialogue and idea-sharing between all participants without fear of their thoughts being negatively received.

“Could You Elaborate on That?”

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This is another great way to show a genuine interest in someone’s perspective or ideas. By demonstrating you want a deeper understanding of their point of view and inviting them to further explain or clarify their thoughts, you encourage a more in-depth discussion.

“Let’s Prioritize Our Goals”

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Conversations in a group setting can sometimes get tense or overwhelming. By suggesting you prioritize your joint goals, you focus the conversation on your common objectives. This encourages others to align their efforts and helps to navigate through minor disagreements by focusing on the bigger picture.

“How Do You Propose We Move Forward?”

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When disagreements become tense or an issue becomes seemingly too much of a problem, this phrase assertively asks others to concentrate their minds on problem-solving, shifting the focus from the issues to solutions. It also demonstrates that you are open to leadership from others.

“I’m Confident That”

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When working together, it’s important to listen to everyone’s points of view, but when you are completely confident in your own thoughts, it can be helpful to assertively let others know. They may choose not to act on it, but by expressing your confidence, you’ll positively communicate your opinions without being overbearing.

“Let’s Agree to Disagree”

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When working collaboratively, it can be hard to move past some issues, and when that occurs, this phrase is a great way to assertively acknowledge the differences and allow the conversation to move forward without having to find a consensus on the issue.

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