Unlearn the behavioural patterns of being told to ‘be a good girl,’ without feeling rude?
Knowing your needs but not feeling allowed to express them is one thing. You are allowed. But thinking it’s rude or impolite to communicate your needs is another thing entirely. Younger women generally don’t have too much problem with the ‘I don’t want to be a bother but could you possibly – ’ (you fill in the blank.) It’s the older generations, women who were brought up in the 40’s, 50’s and even the 60’s who have problems with their right to be heard. Often because they have been told time and time again that it’s impolite or rude to complain or ask for something they need or want.
There is a rude way and a polite way of asking for what you want.
If you asked June Dally-Watkins she would say one way is unacceptable, the other way is admirable.
The wrong way is aggressive, lay blame, be loud and obnoxious. It’s tempting not to ask politely because the loud and obnoxious seem to get the service they demand.
The level voice, peppered with please and thank you seems to get you nowhere.
It is right to be assertive when telling a restaurant manager that the food is not good. It is wrong to get angry and blame the waiter. It is wrong to snap your fingers at the waiter. Or shout across the room to get service. It is impolite to loudly insult the food. It is never right to call anyone a name.
But what do you do if your friend, husband, wife, or child behave that?
You gently explain the alternative to them. Let them know that aggressive attitudes make life unnecessarily difficult for all.
Calm down, trust their complaint will be heard.
Learning how to speak up and express your needs or wants is a good thing.
People Pleasing is not a good thing.
If you’d like to hear more about how the art of shutting down your needs and People Pleasing is not doing you any good, pop over to the Podcast with Cynthia Morton as we ask the question: how much of our society’s attempt at “people pleasing” is actually pleasing people?