is that it helps you eliminate the fear and stress which still today are present in many of our life and work relationships, be they demanding bosses, angry customers, or unhelpful colleagues. Fear and stress-based relationships create different forms of flight-fight reactions in us. These can take the form of avoiding people, giving in to them, battling them, bullying them, or manipulating them. All these routes lead to unease, disease,and ultimate exhaustion. With Assertiveness skills, you learn that fear doesn't have to exist in any relationship you choose to have, whatever the other person wants. Assertiveness gives you back personal control that allows you to act rather than react and to see everyone else the way you see yourself. With love and respect. In every situation in which we have to work with others, it is primarily our thoughts and perceptions that influence our behaviour. These can centre around positive and winning interpretations of life or negative and losing ones. Winning and losing options seem to be at the very heart of the way we run our societies. Our legal, judicial, political and governmental systems are strongly adversarial. They are about either-or choices. "If you are not for me, you must be against me." Because of this, many people develop conditional winning perceptions of life, ie for me to win, others must lose. These result in aggressive, competitive and manipulative strategies. Others develop losing perceptions of life, ie I'm not as good, clever, strong or popular as he is, therefore he is better than me. These result in non-assertive strategies. Just as you can adopt the body language of an assertive person, and in the process become more assertive, so you can practise the speaking tones of an assertive person while recognizing the tones of someone in submissive or aggressive mode. people state opinions as facts, eg "That's rubbish!; use threats, eg "You'd better get it done."; put others down, eg "You cannot be serious."; praise self, criticise others, eg "I knew I should have done it."; use "must", "should", "ought" excessively; place excessive emphasis on words, eg "Everybody should..."; use eople state opinions as facts, eg "That's rubbish!; use threats, eg "You'd better get it done."; put others down, eg "You cannot be serious."; praise self, criticise others, eg "I knew I should have done it."; use "must", "should", "ought" excessively; place excessive emphasis on words, eg "Everybody should..."; use a voice that is loud, strident, sharp, abrupt, sarcastic and cold. According to Jo Ellen Grzyb and Robin Chandler, authors of "The Nice Factor Book", it is possible to be too nice for your own good. If you are too attentive, too thoughtful, too agreeable, too understanding, it can make you feel you don't have a choice on how to behave. It can leave you feeling persistently put upon and hard done by. This is not to say that niceness isn't important in the right place and at the right time. But if it is done out of fear of offending, of not being liked or of triggering someone else's anger, it is a liability. Too often nice-meaning people come across as ineffectual, invisible, adaptive and powerless with the feeling they've only themselves to blame. There is however a middle ground between being excessively nice and excessively unpleasant and that is the territory of Assertiveness.