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Welcome to the show notes for Episode 74 of the Leading From Alignment Podcast. Today, we want to explore the positive impact assertiveness has on our health.

One thing many leaders (especially Christian leaders) don’t know about anger is they have permission to express it properly. If Jesus expressed anger in certain moments, it means we’ll have moments where anger, properly expressed, is right and appropriate.

There are essentially three ways to express our anger:

  1. Aggression
  2. Passivity
  3. Assertiveness

Before we tackle these three avenues, it’s important to understand some basics about anger:

  • Anger is a secondary emotion
  • Anger can be a devastating emotion

Three ways to express anger:

Aggression

Aggression can include inappropriate language or a demeaning tone; yelling and screaming, or getting physical with people.

Passivity

Passivity means shoving our anger underground. Submerged anger leads to bitterness, the nursing of grudges, difficulty granting forgiveness, and eventually, struggles with anxiety and/or depression.

Assertiveness

Assertiveness is telling a person who’s taken something from you how their behavior negatively impacted you Assertiveness embodies both truthful and gracious speech.

  • It’s the middle ground between passivity and aggression. It tells the person you’re angry with how you really feel-but does so with love and respect.
  • It speaks in a way that honors the person you’re talking to, and in a way that honors Father God, and in a way that keeps you healthy—all at the same time! Ephesians 4:26 says: “In your anger, do not sin.”

Why is assertiveness so important? If you don’t learn assertiveness, anger will end up running . . . and ruining your life . . .and your leadership

Next steps: If your default response to anger is either to explode or submerge – find a mentor, or a coach, or a counselor who can help you figure out what’s fueling it in your life. Then, work with them on a practical plan to grow in this most important area

John Opalewski

Author John Opalewski

John Opalewski is a graduate of Oral Roberts University. He served as a pastor for fifteen years. He has worked in the business world for nearly two decades, serving in multiple leadership roles. John's experience as a leader in both the church and business arenas has made him a sought-after international speaker, coach and mentor.

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