Assertive, Aggressive & Passive Communication Styles - aifc

As individuals we often dress, look, communicate and express ourselves in a variety of different ways.  When communicating with one another we might come across to others as assertive but nice, way too nice and trying too hard or just plain aggressive.

In what ways are these communication styles different from each other?

ASSERTIVE COMMUNICATION – Allows us to express our beliefs, feelings, opinions and thoughts in an open respectful manner that doesn’t violate the rights of others.  Assertive communicators use actions and words to express their boundaries in a calm manner with an air of confidence.


The benefits of addopting an assertive communication style are: earning the respect of others and boosting your own self esteem.

AGRESSIVE COMMUNICATION – Quite often people mistake assertiveness for aggression.  Aggressiveness doesn’t hold any respect for others.  It disregards anyone’s needs, feelings, opinions and ideas and sometimes this can compromise the safety of others as well.


Aggressive communicators are easily identified by their demanding.

PASSIVE COMMUNICATORS – Silence and assumption are the hallmarks of the passive communication style. Passive communicators often lack of respect for themselves, disregarding their own opinions, feelings, needs, and desires. Passive communication places one’s own needs and desires below those of others. Passivity takes away one’s power and allows others to decide the outcomes of situations.


Passive communicators hesitate, they might be quiet, self dismissing or put themselves down.  Often they have body language that might include covering the mouth, looking down, avoiding eye contact, crossed arms and placing their hand over their mouth to cover.

Sandra Ciminelli
Cred. Dip.Couns.(Christian)


Studying at aifc

Have you thought about becoming a qualified counsellor? It’s a great opportunity to learn how you can extend God's love and grace to the hurting out in the community.

For those who would like to enrol in aifc’s accredited Christian counselling courses we have two intakes per year for courses commencing around the following months:

  • The beginning of each year in February
  • Mid-Year courses commence in July

Enrolment Season - opens approximately 2 months prior to our courses commencing. Enrol online here during our enrolment season.

We also offer two modes of study:

  1. Seminar Blended Mode - only 13 face-to-face days per year
  2. Online Supported Mode - study online only from anywhere

A Master of Counselling course was introduced in 2018.

Contact aifc

Monday to Friday from 9am – 5pm