It has taken me a while to finally learn how to be direct and straightforward in life. I always thought that to be direct meant you had to be rude. If you want to get anywhere in life you have to be direct in order to convey your feelings, get what you want, etc. There are many ways you can do this without coming across as being rude or mean.
Here are three ways you can be that more direct person you've been striving to be in 2019:
1. Have confidence
Confidence means that you are sure of yourself. You stand up for yourself and don't let anyone boss you around. You know your worth, so draw your confidence from that knowledge. Are you a timid person? Are you afraid to speak up to your colleagues or boss at work? It's scary, but if you don't feel like you understand something or whatever the situation may be, it's always good to speak up for yourself and ask questions. They would rather you ask 100 questions than to take a guess and do something wrong.
2. Be firm, but also polite
Whenever I try to be firm with people, I feel a wave of guilt wash over me and I immediately apologize. In order to be firm, you have to be assertive in the way you speak, but just not in an aggressive manner. Let's say that you have been on a few dates with someone and you don't think you like them romantically and you don't want to hurt their feelings but you also want to be honest with them. How do you go about that? The best way to do this is to say "I want to be honest. I just haven't been feeling a connection with you romantically and I'd rather not lead you on or make you feel bad". It's a clear answer, it's honest, but it's still polite.
Practice with your family or friends. If someone is asking you to do something that you don't want to do, learn to say no. I find that it is always easier to practice with your loved ones. If you don't feel comfortable doing this, practice saying it to yourself in the mirror. Imagine someone is asking you to do a favor for them that you don't feel comfortable doing, politely decline. You're not obligated to do everything for everyone.