You may know a few aggressive people that seem to do well for themselves, but they could be doing even better. Aggressiveness works, to a point, because most people avoid confrontation. However, confrontational people are disliked and suffer in many other ways.
Aggressive people often find themselves alone, disrespected, and unable to reach the highest levels of success.
If you’ve considered adopting an aggressive personality, you might want to reconsider. There are better options.
Consider these disadvantages of being too aggressive:
- You show little respect for others and receive little respect in return. Aggressiveness ignores the rights and interests of others. The message is clear: your needs are more important than those of anyone else.
- As you can imagine, people aren’t thrilled when faced with an aggressive person. They may fear him, but they certainly don’t respect him.
- Your relationships suffer. Your personal relationships are limited to those that lack self-esteem. Anyone else will avoid you as much as possible. At work, you won’t be able to trust anyone. When the only person that matters to you is yourself, you don’t matter to anyone else. Everything in life is better when your relationships are thriving.
- Your self-esteem suffers. Down deep, aggressive people believe they can’t be successful any other way. The only way they believe they can compete is to steamroll the competition. It’s hard to feel good about yourself when you’re treating others poorly.
- If aggressive behavior appeals to you, ask yourself why. How would you rate your self-esteem? Do you think being aggressive would be as attractive to you if your self-esteem were higher? Do the aggressive people you know have high self-esteem?
- Aggressiveness hurts your progress in the long-term. Aggressiveness can be very effective in the short-term, but hinders your long-term progress. You don’t get the support you need to ride to the highest levels. Give yourself all the help you can get by avoiding overly aggressive behavior.
- You’ll be alone. Aggressive people struggle to create and maintain meaningful personal and professional relationships. There aren’t too many people that spend time with aggressive people by choice.
- You fail to develop other skills. When aggression works for you, you fail to develop the other skills necessary to succeed in life and in relationships. You become a sort of “one trick pony.” Think about the aggressive people you know. They’re aggressive in most, if not all, situations. Now consider how others feel about them, too.
- Others will attempt to derail your efforts. Life is easier when others are willing to help you. When you’re aggressive, most people secretly want you to fail. Some are bold enough to make it a point to get in your way. Isn’t life tough enough without having others intentionally sabotaging your efforts? Avoid making enemies.
Assertiveness is a positive and more beneficial option than aggressiveness. Assertiveness is viewed as a confident and agreeable trait. To be assertive, give your opinions, work constructively with others, and practice living a life of integrity. It’s also important to communicate clearly, directly, and to have excellent listening skills.
Assertiveness requires more skill than aggression, but the results are more pleasing and less limited over the long haul.
Aggressiveness has multiple disadvantages. You’re ultimately forced to take on the world alone. No one wants to help you or spend time with you. Those around you resent you, even if you manage to get your way. Consider a more assertive approach in your life. You’ll be more respected, liked, and admired.