How to Say What You Want Without Upsetting Others

Published by Kym Breeze on

The art of communication: How To Say What You Want Without Upsetting Others.

Communication is an important part of Co-sharing, learning how to say what you want without upsetting others will help you set your boundaries and ask for what you want in your home-share agreement.  It’s best to communicate in an assertive way rather than aggressive or passive way. It takes time to learn a new language, below we have some tools and skills to help you along. If you have any questions don’t hesitate to contact us at

There are 3 main types of communication:

passive, aggressive and assertive.

In every conversation, our communication style either makes it easy or hard for the other person to understand what we mean. Unfortunately, we suffer the consequences if we don’t know which communication style to use. This can lead to accidentally offending people or not clearly conveying your point. So, knowing how to say what you want without upsetting others is an art, as you can see.

Passive communication.

If you are too passive, then you most likely agree with what others tell you, follow the crowd, and are oftentimes perceived as weak. Passive communicators will often lose respect, be underestimated, and receive fewer opportunities.

Aggressive communication.

Aggressive communication, on the other hand, can prevent you from having stable friendships and relationships. Why? Because no one enjoys the company of someone who constantly judges, argues, disagrees, and doesn’t allow others to share their opinions.

You might be using aggressive communication if you ignore people, don’t take their feelings into consideration, talk more than you listen, or use aggressive gestures. This form of communication comes across as disrespectful and often ruins relationships.

But assertive communication is the balance between the other two communication styles.

Assertive communication is what we should all aim for, it allows you to meet your needs and the needs of the other person; everyone ends up happy. It helps you to avoid hurting someone else’s feelings.

Of course, sometimes it can be hard to form this habit and stay away from the other two styles of communication. It takes a bit of self-control. Luckily, there are some smart and simple ways to improve your assertive communication skills and know how to say what you want without upsetting others.

Aiming to be more assertive in your communication and why you should

Better Communication

Your assertive behaviour is great for both parties. If you communicate wisely, you can say what you want and get what you want out of any conversation. This then leaves the other person happy as well. In a home-share situation, this allows you to clearly define what you will accept and what you expect from the other person. It allows you to lay the ground rules for a happy home-share experience without offending the other woman. It also opens up a two-way conversation about her needs and expectations in a safe environment.

Less Stress

Let’s face it, aggressive communication is stressful (as can be passive); one of the people involved generally ends up feeling humiliated or threatened. If you are on the “strong” side, you might end up regretting putting your need to be heard over the other person’s right to speak.

With assertive communication, however, you’re acknowledging the other person’s feelings and desires, while openly sharing yours and trying to find the best solution for the situation. This communication style equates to very little stress.

More Trust

Trust is important in personal and especially in home-share relationships, and being assertive helps you get there naturally. Passive communication often results in others not taking you seriously, while aggressive behaviour tends to lead to feelings of resentment.

Being trustworthy in your communication greatly builds connection and you move forward into the next stage of your home-share relationship more easily.

Now you can see the importance of how to say what you want without upsetting others.

5 ways to build more Confidence in your communication.

Did you know that your assertive communication skills are directly related to gaining self-esteem? Think about it. When you hide your feelings or interact with others without caring about what they think or feel, you’re either lowering your self-esteem or building it on the wrong foundation.

But assertive behaviour, on the other hand, shows that you’re both brave enough to stand up for your rights and you’re in control of what you’re saying (and more importantly, how you say it). You find the balance between clearly stating your needs and giving the other person the chance to do the same and feel equal.

Assertive Communication: How To Say What You Want Without Upsetting Others

Let’s talk about some techniques you can use to develop a more assertive behaviour:

Learn to Say “No” more often.

The place to start is with you. It is always up to us for if we can’t or won’t change then we will never have successful relationships.

For assertive behaviour, you’ll have to let go of the need to please everyone and do things according to their expectations. When you do this, you are often left dissatisfied and become weaker the next time you’re about to try asking for something you want.  Knowing how to say what you want without upsetting others helps you to be confident and satisfied in your home.

Assertive communication means being okay with saying exactly what you want, yet doing it in such a way that it doesn’t hurt the other person’s feelings.

This might mean rejecting things you decide are not a good fit for you, but then explaining exactly why you rejected them. The word “because” is a powerful game-changer in communication. If you give strong reasons and say them with determination, no one will be upset that you gave them a negative answer.

2.  Watch your tone.

The self-control that was mentioned earlier should be used here.

Your voice needs to be relaxed; you should sound and feel calm. This can take practice, just like any other new skill. Be patient and don’t get annoyed if you end up raising your voice without realising or rushing a conversation because you become irritated. Remember to breathe, pause, take another breath then speak slowly and in a soft tone.

Assertive behaviour also means not showing hesitation or harshness through your voice. Keep it friendly and calm. Speaking slowly and using a quieter voice is usually enough to bring balance back to the conversation.

3 Keep discussing until you reach a solution.

When you don’t get the answer you want for some time, it’s easier to just agree and walk away; that’s passive.

Being assertive, on the other hand, means continuing, in a calm and respectful manner, until you have resolved the problem. It might require asking more questions, listening more carefully, or getting creative and exploring more options.

It is often worth writing down the questions and answers in a brain dump exercise. To do this use a large sheet of paper, coloured pens and just dump all your options down. Then work through them and cross out all the ones that don’t work, from there you have common ground to discuss in an assertive manner together.

It is worth your time and effort as in the end both parties feel good, validated and respected as well as comfortable that you both understand what is expected in your home-share agreement.

4. Pay attention to the nonverbal communication.

 Nonverbal communication is body language, eye contact, posture, listening cues, and reactions. All of these should be done without any sense of aggression or passiveness. The former (aggression) will cause the other person to go into defence mode, while the latter (passiveness) will make them feel ignored.

Keeping eye contact helps you stay focused. Also, it’s an easy way to let the other person know you’re invested in and care about what they are saying.

5. Be Fully Present.

Last yet not least, the secret to effective communication and forming better relationships is to be aware of what exactly the other person is trying to say. Listen to hear what they are saying, don’t listen with the intent of answering.

Try not to let your mind get distracted, focus on the here and now.

Mindfulness means being present and not thinking about anyone else who’s not currently around you. Forget about what else is happening around you, look at the person you are communicating with at that moment, and listen actively to everything they are saying.

You are planning on starting a new home-share arrangement, this will be life changing so treat this time communicating with as much respect as you would any other important relationship. This could be the best chance you have to form a real connection with a like-minded woman and enjoy a comfortable life with good company and financial assistance. It is worth taking and making time to communicate in an assertive and positive manner.

Today is a gift- that is why it is called “the present”-unwrap it.

How to Say What You Want Without Upsetting Others

Developing your assertive communication skills can take some practice. Accept it as a challenge. Practice it with family and trusted friends.  Once you know how to say what you want without upsetting others you will see the following benefits.

  • Fewer arguments,
  • A more positive and peaceful atmosphere at home,
  • Less stress,
  • An increase in self-esteem and confidence, etc.
  • Understanding each other’s boundaries
  • Respectful relationships in all aspects of your life.

Then, you can start applying these skills to everyone you meet to improve all your relationships.

By being assertive in your communication, you are making positive changes and increase your success with your home-share partner. Interested in learning more? Join our community today by clicking here. it’s free.

Leave a comment below if you have learned “How to say what you want without upsetting others”.