zandax online course logo
Info, Blogs, Contact & Login

Why You Must Teach Your Children to Be Assertive

From the ZandaX Assertiveness Blog

Articles to help you be assertive and self confident

Home  >  Blogs Home  >  Development Blog  >  Assertiveness Articles  > 
Why You Must Teach Your Children to Be Assertive

Why You Must Teach Your Children to Be Assertive

A post from our Assertiveness blog

      Written by Riley Mitchell
Childhood is a valuable time for life lessons. Alongside the regular school curriculum of maths, English and science, we learn key social skills that help us navigate our way through adolescence, into adult life. We teach our kids to "play nicely", to share with their friends and to be polite. But, just as we learn the language skills of English or French, there's a subtler social language that underpins all of our interactions and that many of us aren't taught; assertiveness.

Many kids aren't born assertive, and the skills that go along with it aren't introduced or nurtured at school or at home. This can have two behavioral outcomes; a) our child becomes quiet and shy or b) they take on more aggressive traits, without a proper steer, and they bully others to achieve their goals. As parents, neither one of these outcomes, the bully or the potentially bullied, is what we would want for our child. Both have the potential to profoundly influence their later life and lead to unhappiness. So, as we support our kids through their homework so that they can achieve in their school life, as we take them to the doctor and dentist to ensure that they grow up healthy, we have a duty to support their emotional and behavioral development through the teaching of assertiveness skills. Where do we start then?

Want to Be More Assertive?

We have online courses with full 12-months' access.
RRP from $59 – limited time offer just $12.00

What does a passive child look like?

Lots of kids are shy when they first meet new people. And many of us would probably prefer a quiet child over a bully. But one of the potential repercussions of being "quiet" is that kids don't learn how to articulate their boundaries and stick up for themselves, thus making them a target for children who only know how to express themselves aggressively. The bullies.

Both aggressive and passive personalities have trouble with self-expression, on opposite ends of the spectrum. Where a playground bully might shove and snatch to get what they want, a passive child won't be able to express the fact that this isn't OK. It might not always be obvious that you have a passive child on your hands, so here are some of the things to look out for [1].

●      Your child might seem dull, or lethargic: Passive kids tend to lack the high energy levels of their assertive or aggressive counterparts. This might present itself as laziness, or a lack of imagination in finding things to occupy themselves with throughout the day.

●      They might appear to lack "zest for life": Passive personalities, in childhood or adulthood, tend to have trouble expressing themselves through active body language. This can present as an expressionless face, a lack of excitement and enthusiasm, no twinkle in their eye or difficulty laughing and smiling.

●      They have trouble maintaining attention: A passive child often gets lost in their own thoughts. They drift off and lose focus on a task in hand.

●      They're less creative: Kids tend to love expressing themselves creatively, through crafts, drawing, painting or dressing up. But passive children find these activities boring and often won't engage in, or maintain play with, them for long.

●      They struggle to mix with others: Passive kids are withdrawn, around other kids and even around their parents. They don't enjoy playing with other children, preferring their own company, and they may even lack affection towards you, your partner or their grandparents.

●      They enjoy puzzle solving: Because passive personalities prefer to live in their own heads, they enjoy activities which involve deep, solitary, thinking. Puzzle games and problem-solving computer games, for example.

●      They might not enjoy their food: This could be because of the generally social nature of eating family meals together, at a table. Or it could just be because there's a tendency for passive kids to be fussier, since they haven't been able to work through their likes and dislikes fully, but passive children often gain little enjoyment from eating.

●      They enjoy sleep: Passive kids like to sleep long and deeply. Theirs is often a more sedentary lifestyle, so the accumulated lethargy of the day might be to blame.

●      They can seem invisible to others: At school, around other kids or in any other social situation, those with a passive personality tend to be overlooked. This is trend which continues into adulthood, if not nipped in the bud.

Like all habits, if these behaviors go unchecked for too long they can become deeply ingrained. And it doesn't take much of a stretch of the imagination to see how damaging this lifestyle could be for a child's development. Passive personalities struggle to engage with their peers which means that they'll have a great deal of difficulty forming close bonds with other people and the impact that this has on later life is obvious.

How can assertiveness help overcome passive behavior?

Assertiveness teaches skills of self-expression and it does so diplomatically. A few ways that assertiveness can help your child express themselves better are;

●      It will help them to identify their feelings.

●      They'll learn how to voice their opinions and boundaries, with diplomacy, respect for the opinions of others and powerful negotiating skills -- remember, what we would never want to do is turn a passive kid into a bully!

●      They'll learn to say ‘no' without the associated feelings of guilt.

●      It will develop their self-confidence, encouraging them out of their head and into interaction with others. This, in turn, will mean that they're not overlooked by their peers.

●      They'll learn how to build strong, supportive, relationships.

How can assertiveness nip bullying in the bud?

We've talked about developing assertiveness to prevent passive tendencies, but it's just as important in preventing aggression in young children. Just like passiveness, aggression comes from a lack of being able to express oneself appropriately. And so in learning to identify their feelings early on, learning the skills of diplomatic negotiation and empathy toward the feelings of others, those children who might be leaning towards aggression can be encouraged out of the trend.

How can you be a role model in assertiveness?

There are many ways that you can contribute to the development of your child's assertiveness. The first, and most obvious, one being developing those skills yourself and transferring them, actively, day-to-day. We've information on assertiveness courses that can benefit you, here. There is also a wealth of information available via online videos and articles, which you can watch with your child and discuss afterwards. You might wish to talk to your child's school about the measures that they take to develop key social skills and whether there's anything that can be done to promote this.

So perhaps start to dedicate some time to brushing up on your own knowledge, then look for ways that you may be able to influence your child's wider social network. Developing this key life skill early on is the best way to start your family on the path to future fulfillment and happiness.

Want to Be More Assertive?

We have online courses with full 12-months' access.
RRP from $59 – limited time offer just $12.00


[1] Transforming a Passive Child into Active Child - Characteristics of a Passive Child:

[gen ref] Building Assertiveness: How to Help Your Quiet Child Speak Up:

[gen ref] Raising Assertive Kids:

[gen ref] Assertiveness:

[gen ref] Teaching our children "empathetic assertiveness":

Back to the Assertiveness blog

Click the button for more Assertiveness articles.

The ZandaX Personal Development blog

Click a panel for great articles on personal development

ZandaX Blog Contents

Want to see them all? Click to view a full list of articles in our blogs.

Online courses to boost your skills
Click a button to see more about each course
Personal Development
Microsoft Software
Leadership & Management
ZandaX online training course logo
ZandaX – Change Your Life ... Today
All content © ZandaX 2022
Close menu element
See how you score on a range of skills that are critical to your well-being and performance
Communication Skill test
Communication Skills
How Can You Communicate Better?
Would you like to see what kind of communicator you are? And how you can improve the effectiveness of your communications?
Likeability test
How Much Do People Like You?
Do you sometimes wonder just how likeable you are? And wouldn't you like to see how you can (genuinely) become more likeable?

Time Management test
Time Management
How Can You Make More Use Of Your Time?
Are you frustrated by how easily time slips away? Do you get frustrated when things don't get done just because you run out of time?
Assertiveness test
Are you Passive, Aggressive or Assertive?
Would you like to know where you fall on the behavior spectrum? Does your response to events sometimes surprise you?

Close menu element
Information & Resources
ZandaX information
Read more about us, our Privacy Policy and our Terms of Service
See how we want to help you, and how we make everything easy for everyone
Callback request
ZandaX Blogs
Articles to increase your knowledge and understanding in key areas of your life and career.
Read our blogs on Personal Development, Business Skills and Leadership & Management

Time Management test
Log In
Log in to your online dashboard
View your courses, review what you want and download your workbooks and certificates
Assertiveness test
Contact Us
An easy online form to get in touch
With options for More Information, Customer Service and Feedback

Close menu element
Learn About:
Personal Development
Leadership & Management
Sales & Presentations
Microsoft Office
Microsoft Project
Microsoft Visio

[NOTE: Mouse over the titles above,
then to visit the website pages you want,
click on the links in the right hand panel]
Our courses
We have everything covered: learn all applications at all levels!
Microsoft Excel courses
Microsoft Excel 2021 / 365
Introduction to Advanced (*NEW*)
Microsoft Excel VBA
Introduction & Intermediate
Microsoft Excel 2013 / 2016
Introduction to Professional
Microsoft Powerpoint courses
Microsoft PowerPoint 365 (2021)
Ultimate all-in-one (*NEW*)
Microsoft PowerPoint 2019
Introduction to Advanced
Microsoft PowerPoint 2013/2016
Introduction & Advanced
Microsoft Word courses
Microsoft Word 365 (2019)
Introduction & Advanced
Microsoft PowerPoint 2013/2016
Introduction & Advanced
Microsoft Access courses
Microsoft Access 365 (2019)
Introduction & Advanced
Microsoft Access 2013/2016
Introduction to Advanced
Microsoft Outlook courses
Microsoft Outlook 365 (2019)
Ultimate all-in-one (*NEW*)
Microsoft Outlook 365 (2019)
Introduction to Advanced
Microsoft Outlook 2013/2016
Microsoft Project
Enhance your project management with our two intensive but very easy-to-follow CPD certified Microsoft Project courses.
Microsoft Project courses
Microsoft Project Introduction
Get a solid foundation in Project software to create solid, resilient project plans.
You don't need prior experience with Project: just be able to use a PC with Microsoft Windows.
Microsoft Project Advanced
The Advanced course takes you to a level that will put you in complete control of your projects.
You should, of course, be fully conversant with the skills and concepts taught in the Introduction course.
Microsoft Visio
Become a Visio master with our two intensive but very easy-to-follow CPD certified Microsoft Visio courses.
Microsoft Visio courses
Microsoft Visio Introduction
Get a solid base for using Visio to create high quality, impressive diagrams.
You don't need prior experience with Visio: just be able to use a PC with Microsoft Windows.
Microsoft Visio Advanced
This course will enable you to use Visio to design graphics at the highest level.
You should, of course, be fully conversant with the skills and concepts taught in the Introduction course.
Take a look at our new Marketing section which we begin with two great books on Copywriting
... there will be more to follow, so stay tuned!
Copywriting books
Copywriting for Results
A two-book set that will give you all you need to write great copy every time.
Get the first book to learn the process, then the second to see how to apply it to all media types.
  • Copywriting for Results: Your Complete Guide
  • Copywriting for Results: Putting It Into Action
Watch This Space
We have more in the pipeline so be sure to check back soon to see what's new!
More marketing books
Take a look at our new Leadership & Management section which we begin with a superb course on Managing Teams
... there's lots more to follow, so keep in touch!
Team Leadership courses
Team Leadership & Line Management
For practical advice on managing teams for results.
Make your team successful and more positive with tons of real-world techniques that work.
  • Team Management for Line Managers & Supervisors
  • Building High Performing Teams (in production)
Watch Out For More!
We have more courses in the pipeline so check back soon to see what's new!
More team leader courses
Great, easy-to-follow courses on how to succeed in sales and presentations
Drive Your Sales to New Levels
Selling Skills course
Learn how to sell more, to more people
Deliver Presentations that Get Results
Presentation Skills course
Build and deliver great presentations
Your Keys to Success are here!
Sales Management course
Manage your team for great results
Great, easy-to-follow CPD certified courses on skills that will change your life!
Learn How to Stop Wasting Time!
Time Management course
Get more out of every day of your life ...
Boost Your Self Esteem: Be Assertive
Assertiveness course
Learn how to deal with bad behavior
Great Communications = A Happy Life!
Communication Skills course
Supercharge your communications
Improve Your Relationships
Building Relationships course
Learn how to be more likeable!
Get a Plan to Beat Your Stress
Stress Management course
Learn how to reduce & manage your stress
It's the Behavior, Not the Anger!
Anger Management course
Control anger in yourself and other people
Site Cookies
We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better.

You can change your cookie settings in your browser. Otherwise, we'll assume you're OK to continue.

I'm fine with this