Skip to main content

DBT Interpersonal Effectiveness skills are a set of tools designed to help you navigate challenging social situations and build stronger relationships with others. Three key skills in this category are DEAR MAN, GIVE, and FAST.


  • D: Describe the situation, what you want, and why.
  • E: Express your feelings and needs.
  • A: Assert yourself and ask for what you want.
  • R: Reinforce the value of the relationship or the positive aspects of the request.
  • M: Mindful of the interaction and the other person’s perspective.
  • A: Appear confident, remain respectful, and avoid being aggressive or demanding.
  • N: Negotiate if necessary, and find a compromise that works for both parties.

The DEAR MAN skill is used to communicate effectively in a way that is assertive but also respectful and mindful of the other person’s perspective. This skill can be used in a variety of situations, such as asking for a raise, requesting help, or resolving a conflict with a friend or family member.


  • G: Be Gentle and non-judgmental in your approach.
  • I: Interested in the other person’s perspective.
  • V: Validate the other person’s feelings and needs.
  • E: Easy manner and use an easy, non-confrontational tone of voice.

The GIVE skill is used to build stronger relationships by showing empathy and understanding towards the other person. It can be used in situations where you want to improve a relationship or resolve a conflict, by validating the other person’s feelings and showing that you are interested in their perspective.


  • F: Fair: Be fair and objective in your communication.
  • A: No Apologies or Excuses: Speak confidently and avoid making apologies or excuses.
  • S: Stick to the facts: Stay focused on the situation at hand and avoid getting sidetracked.
  • T: Truthful: Be honest and direct in your communication.

The FAST skill is used to stay focused and effective in high-pressure or emotionally charged situations. This skill can be used in situations such as job interviews, important meetings, or performance evaluations, where it is important to stay calm, focused and assertive.

It’s important to remember that the DBT interpersonal effectiveness skills are not meant to be used in isolation, but rather in combination with one another. These skills are intended to help you communicate effectively and build stronger relationships, while also being respectful and mindful of the other person’s perspective.