Difference Between Assertive and Aggressive

Well, Mannered behavior is a key aspect to maintain a good relationship. The one way to display respected behavior is the way we speak to others.

In the professional as well as personal life, communication is a medium through which a person’s behavior is understood. The way we communicate to pass the information without letting down either of them is considered matured and also valued.

There are a few types of communication pattern which is unknowingly or knowingly gets incorporated in day-to-day life. Two of which are most important to understand, one is Assertive and the other is Aggressive.

Assertive and Aggressive forms of communication are common among people and can be seen in the way of communication all the way. How is it supposed to be used and is it supposed to be used, if at all remains a big question?

Assertive vs Aggressive

The main difference between Assertive and Aggressive people is that Assertive people voice out their opinions in such a way that it does not disrespect others, while Aggressive people state their opinions by letting others down in the conversation, they attack others with words to favor their win.

Assertive vs Aggressive


Comparison Table Between Assertive and Aggressive (in Tabular Form)

Parameter of ComparisonAssertiveAggressive
Meaning/ DefinitionAssertive is being and establishing confidence by mutual respect.Aggressive is being and establishing attacking nature by a determined forceful way
Pattern of SpeakingUnderstands and allows other opinions before speaking. They speak openly.Interrupts others abruptly and talks over
Body LanguageMakes very good eye contact. The expressions are genuine, and it matches the message conveyed.Aggressive people tend to glare and stare at others. Their expressions are intimidating to others as well.
Group DynamicsAssertive people participate in the group by getting their opinions, acknowledging facts and also speaking.Aggressive people seem to control the group. No listening happens. It is most of the time speaking and speaking.
Result of CommunicationThey reach the goals by keeping all others in good humor and harmony.They also reach goals but the process would have hurt others’ feelings.


What is Assertive?

The art of standing up for oneself or other’s rights calmly and positively is called Assertive. Assertiveness is a skill one has to develop to establish good social behavior.

Being assertive shall not hurt others while driving the point in the group. How it is displayed shall not upset others and also the self.

Assertiveness is the skill of making others understand a particular point or a situation without hurting their thoughts or feelings. Indeed, it does not affect the personal self too.

Assertive behavior is all about respecting others and themselves.

It is the respect shown to other feelings, thoughts, belief systems and opinions and also the same for themselves.

Assertiveness is a very important interpersonal skill one has to develop. It helps people behave in inappropriate ways in a group.

Assertive people are regarded as confident and charming. It is also an art of listening and observing thoroughly before voicing out their thoughts on the same.

Assertiveness encourages others to speak as well. There is no event of interruption or demeaning behavior happens in the course of action.

The well-mannered action of voicing out appreciation to others happens through assertive behavior.

It is a fabulous act of being grateful for others’ thoughts too.

Assertiveness brings the humblest aspect of a human across the table. People with assertive nature accept mistakes and also apologize nonchalantly.


What is Aggressive?

Aggressive behavior is the way to voice out opinions and thoughts without even considering other’s feelings and thoughts. Aggressive behavior costs a loss of self-esteem to the receiver.

Aggressive behavior is known to hurt others vehemently at times. How it is displayed is also not acceptable by others, still abide by it for the authority the person holds.

Aggressive behavior is one aspect people should learn to get rid of. It does not display good behavior among peers.

Aggressive behavior disrespects others to the core. It simply puts down others for want of doing something that is instructed.

Aggressive people are considered arrogant and rude.

The aggressive people simply won’t listen to others, it is often observed that they interrupt others while they want to make a point.

Aggressive behavior is devoid of compassion. During a conversation, it is noted that they do not offer a chance to others to talk.

Aggressive behavior is often one way, the instruction is given and it is supposed to be followed. There is no chance for others to speak or voice out any opinion, then where is the point of appreciation.

Aggressive people do not accept their mistakes. Rather, they point out others’ faults to hide theirs. The word Sorry is never available in their dictionary.

I found them saying that it would be added sarcasm.


Main Differences Between Assertive and Aggressive

  1. The key difference between Assertive and Aggressive is, Assertiveness is the art of conveying the information to arrive at an amicable result keeping the self-respect of others and personal self intact. While aggressive behavior is conveying the information to arrive at a result without even considering other’s thoughts and opinions.
  2. Assertive behavior establishes the act of valuing self and others equally whereas Aggressive behavior values only self and not others.
  3. Assertive behavior never hurts anyone. However, aggressive behavior hurts others during the action.
  4. Assertive people are observed participating in the group during any discussion. Aggressive people control the group and have the habit of only talking.
  5. The tone while talking also differs, the assertive person will have a conversational tone while the aggressive person seems to speak a lot loud in the act of controlling others.
Difference Between Assertive and Aggressive



The way to behave plays a vital part in personal as well as professional life. It is seen, being assertive brings a lot of laurels. Right from being called confident till being compassionate in understanding the feelings of others, being assertive is the skill to be cultivated.

On the other hand, watch out for instances where we are aggressive. Observing the act and reducing it one by one will do a world of good for anyone. It is not good to attack others in the process of speaking to get a task done.

The reach to excellence begins with appropriate behavior.

Key Differences Between Assertive and Aggressive (PDF Format)

Download the key differences in .PDF format, to read or print them later:

Difference Between Assertive and Aggressive



  1. https://www.skillsyouneed.com/ps/assertiveness.html
  2. https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/Assertiveness.htm
  3. https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/12/181219075844.htm
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