Do you have crippling self-doubt? Do you struggle to hold your head high in social situations? Are you looking for tips on how to carry yourself with more confidence?
Confidence is essential to cultivate if you want to feel fulfilled and successful in life. It can open doors, bring new opportunities, and help you succeed in almost any field.
But how do we build confidence?
According to professionals, the following are effective ways to carry yourself with confidence:
Confidence and Transformation Coach
Confidence is made up of self-management skills
Do you wish you had more confidence? Maybe you want the type of confidence that silently oozes from you and lets you feel empowered and fearless.
By understanding the elements that contribute to confidence and working on continuously improving those skills, you can improve your confidence.
What is confidence?
Confidence is the ability to trust your own abilities, qualities, and judgment. It is a state of mind and a belief about yourself. Confidence needs to be tended to and worked on throughout your life and comes from accepting yourself and your skills.
Confidence is made up of the following self-management skills:
- Interacting with other people
- Managing your emotions
- Managing a personal crisis (painful situation)
Improving your skills in each of these areas enhances and improves your overall confidence.
Mindfulness is the foundation of confidence-building skills
Mindfulness is being aware of what you are thinking and doing at any given moment by raising awareness about your mental and emotional state. It is the foundation of all other confidence-building skills.
To practice mindfulness, try these three steps:
- Observe what you are feeling, seeing, and experiencing, but don’t hold onto it. Observe with compassion, not judgment.
- Describe what you are feeling or seeing and acknowledge the experience. Name your feelings, or acknowledge your thoughts. As with observing, try not to judge or say, “I should/should not feel this way.” Focus on what you are experiencing at that moment.
- Participate in your experience wholeheartedly by doing one thing at a time and letting go of distractions. It may help if you say the action out loud, such as “I am brushing my teeth,” “I am putting toothpaste on the toothbrush,” etc.
Set boundaries and build healthy relationships
To build confidence in interacting with other people, such as social events, focus on building skills such as setting boundaries and managing relationships.
Here are four tips for setting boundaries:
- Define your boundaries and stick to them.
- Know your limits and values— what are you willing to compromise or not compromise on?
- Be assertive — ask for what you want.
- Learn to say “no” (Hint, it’s okay to say no! Saying no means you are saying yes to you).
Here are four tips for a good and healthy relationship with anyone:
- Know what you want and ask for it.
- Observe or find out what the other person wants.
- Negotiate and compromise so you can both get some of what each of you wants.
- Give what you can regarding what the other person wants, but remember your boundaries and stay true to yourself.
Manage your emotions
As you improve your skills in interacting with others, you will also want to continue managing your emotions. In relationships, emotions such as anger, joy, sadness, and fear/anxiety are sure to come up. How you manage your emotions determines your confidence.
Here are four tips for managing your emotions:
- Face your emotions and feel them, but do not react or let them take over your mood.
- Be aware of your emotions. Name them, but don’t shame them. It’s okay to have feelings.
- Be prepared and aware of triggers such as stress, fatigue, hunger, overstimulation, demands, upsetting topics, etc.
- Practice self-care and mindfulness, such as deep breathing, engaging in a favorite activity, or distracting and pleasant thoughts.
Manage a personal crisis (painful situation)
We all encounter personal crises that seem insurmountable or difficult to accept. Pain is part of life, and trying to avoid pain only creates more problems. Being able to manage a personal, painful situation improves your overall confidence.
A large part of managing a painful situation is radical acceptance. Radical acceptance is the realization that you cannot change a situation, but rather you accept it as is.
Accepting a situation does not mean liking or agreeing with it. You are just acknowledging the painful situation, and you stop trying to blame things or people for the occurrence.
When you practice radical acceptance, you reduce personal suffering and increase your inner peace.
Here are four tips for managing painful situations and practicing radical acceptance:
- Distract your thoughts with enjoyable activities, helping someone else, or by using distracting physical sensations such as holding an ice cube or taking a hot (or cold) shower.
- Engage your senses (seeing, hearing, smell, taste, and touch). Look at something beautiful, listen to music, smell your favorite scent, taste something delicious, and touch something pleasurable.
- Change your thoughts by imagining your favorite place, finding the positives in your current situation, engaging in prayer or self-reflection, changing your facial expression and relaxing your whole body, or focusing on being entirely present at the moment.
- Thinking of pros and cons by asking yourself, “what if I avoid the pain by engaging in unhealthy activities (drugs, alcohol, etc.)?” or setting a goal to experience the painful situation, knowing it won’t last forever, and realizing you are stronger than you think you are.
Now that you know the specific actions to improve your confidence, it’s time to put those skills into action!
Life gives you many opportunities to practice building your confidence, so the next time you are faced with setting boundaries, managing a painful situation, managing your emotions, or the opportunity to practice mindfulness, refer to one of the steps above and carry yourself with confidence.
Ketan Parmar, MD, MBBS, DPM
Counseling Psychologist | Psychiatrist and Mental Health Expert, ClinicSpots
Believe in yourself
Confidence starts with believing in yourself. It is important to have faith that you are capable of doing whatever it takes to reach your goals and be successful. Having a strong belief in yourself will help you stay motivated and energetic, despite any obstacles or challenges that come your way.
Related: How to Believe in Yourself More?
Make sure that you recognize your own strengths and capabilities, as this will give you the confidence to face any situation head-on.
Have positive self-talk
It’s important to talk to yourself positively when it comes to carrying yourself with confidence.
Speak kindly to yourself; don’t belittle or criticize yourself for making mistakes or not achieving something right away. Instead, recognize your efforts and use positive affirmations or mantras to help you stay focused on the task at hand.
Dress to impress
The way that you present yourself is important when it comes to carrying yourself with confidence. When dressing for an event or for everyday life, make sure that you pick clothes that fit well and reflect your unique personality.
Additionally, make sure that your hair and makeup look put-together; this will give off a sense of confidence and show others that you are capable of taking care of yourself and looking good in the process.
Make eye contact
Eye contact is an important part of carrying yourself with confidence, as it shows that you are engaged in the conversation and paying attention to what is being said.
Make sure that you make strong and meaningful eye contact when talking with someone, as this will create a sense of trust and respect between both parties.
Additionally, maintaining eye contact while speaking indicates self-confidence, so it’s important to be aware of how much eye contact you are making.
Take time for yourself
It’s essential to take some time out of your day for yourself; this can involve reading a book, doing yoga, or even meditating. Taking some “you” time helps to relax and calm your mind, recharge your batteries and give you a chance to think about what it is that makes you unique and special.
When you take time for yourself, your confidence will naturally increase, and you’ll be ready to tackle anything that comes your way.
Ask for help
If there’s something that you don’t know how to do or if there’s something you need help with, don’t be afraid to ask for assistance.
Asking for help doesn’t make you weak; it demonstrates that you are smart enough to know when you need help, and it shows that you care about doing the best job possible.
Practice body language
Your body language speaks volumes about how confident you feel.
A good way to make sure that your body language is sending the right message is to practice in front of a mirror. Check your posture, smile, and ensure that you are making eye contact with your reflection.
Additionally, try speaking in front of a mirror as this will help build up your confidence for when you have to speak in public or when talking with an important person such as a colleague or boss.
Related: How to Get Rid of Social Anxiety?
Stay true to yourself
Finally, it’s important to stay true to who you are and not let anyone else dictate your decisions. Don’t allow yourself to be influenced by the opinions of others, as this can take away from your own sense of confidence.
Be sure to believe in yourself, and don’t forget that everyone has strengths and weaknesses; accept yours and work on them instead of trying to fit someone else’s mold.
Fake it till you make it
If all else fails, it’s okay to fake it till you make it.
Even if you don’t feel particularly confident in a situation, try your best to act as you do. Put on a brave face and focus on the positives; this will help boost your actual confidence over time until it becomes something that comes naturally.
Remember, having confidence doesn’t mean being perfect; it simply means having faith in yourself and believing that you can handle whatever life throws at you.
Focus on these tips and let them guide you when feeling doubtful or unsure about something — with enough practice, carrying yourself with confidence will become second nature!
By following these steps, you will be able to carry yourself with confidence no matter what situation you find yourself in.
CEO and Founder, MEvolution
Confidence. We all want it. We all know when someone has it. They have this unshakeable conviction that you can feel in their energy, their tone, the look on their face, and the way they carry themselves.
Yet, it can seem elusive, especially for those that get sucked into the spiral of self-doubt.
But where does confidence come from? Well, it all starts with the freedom to be yourself. Because true, authentic confidence starts from within. And if it does not come easily to you, don’t worry! It is a learnable trait.
Know who you are
While we may have many values, your personal core values are those three to five words that describe who you want to be and how you want to show up. They provide a compass to guide your behaviors and decisions consistently.
Core values set the foundation for confidence, as when you are aligned with your core values and create a life that exemplifies them, you experience internal harmony.
To define your core values, you can look at the traits that you admire and dislike in others, and you can look at past situations where you felt heightened negative emotions.
In these moments, if you peel back the layers, you will likely find that one of your core values was contradicted. This is because our values impact how we feel.
When anyone, ourselves included, contradicts our personal core values, we can feel heightened negative emotions such as shame, guilt, frustration, disappointment, or anger.
For example, if you get angry when someone tries to tell you what to do, a core value may be freedom. The good news is that you can define your core values and who you want to be and that you are in control of living them.
Practice strategic communications
Communicating with confidence requires clarity of thought. Our thoughts alone can be decorated by emotions and assumptions, all of which can cause us to appear muddled, unsure, or less confident in what we are saying.
A quick hack you can use is to visualize what you are saying as statements with periods in the end. As you read the sentence in your mind, you will sound more confident due to the falling intonation.
However, in the long term, to increase your confidence when you want to state your opinion, share ideas, or have a challenging conversation, you can work through your thoughts beforehand.
Asking yourself questions such as “why do I believe this?” and writing out the answer will help you communicate with conviction and clarity.
Worry less about what other people think
People often over-worry about what others may think about them, stifling them from bringing their ideas or true self forward. Removing the shackles of this concern is incredibly liberating. To do this, it requires a two-pronged approach.
Related: How to Not Care What People Think
Firstly, you need to adjust your internal measurement system, as comparing yourself to others is a futile task that wastes precious mental capacity that could be used in a much more meaningful way.
Instead, measure yourself by your value system and how well you are living in accordance with it, as well as if you yourself are progressing and better than you were before.
The goal is progress, not perfection.
If you are using yourself as your measurement post, then you are less likely to waste energy on worrying about the thoughts of others, which you simply do not control.
Secondly, you can train yourself to process feedback in a healthy and productive way. When someone gives you feedback, first take a pause to understand their intent.
Many people do not know how to communicate best, and sometimes the words they use may trigger you to have an emotional response.
Once you understand the true message, you can see how relevant and prevalent it is.
Does it appear in other areas of your life? Have you received similar feedback before? Once you have analyzed this, you can make the decision as to whether or not you need to take action.
Relinquish your internal blockers
Our experiences from the past form our belief systems, which in turn impact how we feel and the choices we make. Understanding where your beliefs may be limiting you will help you uplevel your confidence and empower you to bring more of yourself to the table.
Whether it is an overly critical inner voice, the negative spiral of rumination or a need for external validation, getting clear on the patterns of behaviors that get you stuck and working on reframing these thoughts and retraining your mind will enable you to unlearn these destructive patterns that make you question your abilities and potential.
Related: How to Get Rid of Negative Thoughts?
When you feel your confidence wavering, you can start by asking yourself what you are fearful of and why? When you are fearful of failure or fear the inevitable stumbles that you may make in life, you are less open to risk.
By challenging your fears and assumptions, you will soothe negative emotions, quell unnecessary worrisome thoughts, and open yourself up to more opportunities.
As you move forward, understand that confidence is not always being right. It’s not always being completely sure; it’s knowing that you are true to yourself and trusting that no matter what happens, you will be ok.
After all, you have already successfully navigated 100% of your worst days so far.
Keynote Speaker | Founder, Empowerment Through Movement LLC
Start paying attention to your body
Paying attention to how we stand, sit and walk helps us improve our mood and instill confidence in those around us.
Our mindset is tied to our body consciousness and reflects how we feel inside. It’s hard to disguise our true feelings; our facial expressions and posture will always give us away. Poker players call it a ‘tell.’
They purposely look for signs that will let them know when someone is bluffing or feeling good about their hand. It could be as simple as noticing a player holding their breath or sitting up a little straighter, which will give other players insight into the hand their holding.
We all subconsciously judge body language when meeting people for the first time. It’s part of our fight or flight response to determining friend or foe.
So we watch how a person greets us; are they smiling, frowning, or looking annoyed? Do they seem uneasy or shy because they’re not making eye contact, or do they come across as sure of themselves by shaking our hand and looking us in the eyes?
In a matter of seconds, we’ve decided on our first impression of our new acquaintance.
The problem many of us face is how we confidently carry ourselves if we doubt our capabilities. The answer lies in starting with our body.
The beauty of pulling our shoulders back, lifting our heads, and standing tall, reduces our anxiety. This position for our body tells the mind that we are self-assured and strong. Believe it or not, the mind will not argue and will gladly play along.
In addition, trying different stances will yield a mood change.
For example, put your hands on your hips and stand as if you’re a superhero, or raise your arms over your head as if you had just won a race. These simple moves do wonders to help boost your self-esteem.
Watch how you walk
If you want to feel energized, pick up your pace, keep your head lifted, and smile. Walking with purpose will give you a sense of determination, reducing any stress or nervousness you may feel.
By the time you’ve reached your destination, a networking event, or a job interview, you’ll radiate positive energy throughout the whole room.
Everyone is always looking for a friendly, uplifting face that will make meeting someone new pleasant. You’ll be that face. Instead of waiting for our minds to tell us we’re confident, we can take a moment and check our posture.
For example, are we slouching with our heads down? Are we walking slowly as if the whole world is on our shoulders? Or are we standing tall, shoulders back, head lifted, and smiling?
It sounds too easy to work but try it the next time you’re not feeling your best. You may surprise yourself and notice an attitude change for the better.
Certified Health, Life, and Spiritual Coach | Founder, Collective Healing San Diego
Observe yourself as you enter a public space. It can be a company party, coffee shop, or family gathering. Notice if you tend to puff up or shrink.
Puffing up can mean you feel like you have to put on a persona to be bigger than life, or at the very least, be bigger than where you actually are at this moment in order to feel like you matter.
Puffing up can signal a need to armor up as if you are not safe and accepted as you are. It can also indicate the need to please people or present a disposition to be accepted.
The opposite is also true in the tendency to shrink. Both have underlying narratives of “not enoughness” but are expressed differently.
Shrinking can feel like everyone else is more handsome, beautiful, successful, or loved than you are. It can make you feel lonely in a crowd.
Shrinking can also present when you feel like you have to dim yourself to make others feel better around you. As if what you possess as a person is not valuable or unappreciated.
Confident people have self-awareness that these dynamics are going on within them. It allows them to gently climb down the ladder from a puff up, or climb up the ladder out of the pit of shrinking.
They can then recalibrate and decide that they showed up to participate as they simply are.
Confident people have practiced this process so frequently that it integrated into them, where puffing up and shrinking become very minimal in their experiences going forward.
Allow curiosity to lead by asking questions of those around you
You seldom see confident people too preoccupied with themselves. In most cases, they allow curiosity to lead by asking questions of those around them and tend to possess great listening skills.
By striking up conversations to know more about the people, location, or function, they are a part of, this trait of curiosity demolishes any pressure to know everything.
That doesn’t mean a curious person is not knowledgeable. In fact, they tend to know a lot because they’re curious. The difference is they are aware enough to know when or not that knowledge is beneficial for the moments they are in and have no desire to “one up” anyone.
They’ve learned curiosity makes their experiences more engaging, interesting, and adventurous.
Confident people know their limitations
This is a hot word in the world of wellness. Boundaries can be explained at many different starting points, but the simplest way to process this is to ask yourself: Do I honor my “yes” and “no”?
Confident people know their boundaries. They don’t over-promise, under-deliver, or allow guilt to lead. They understand life has nuances. They are all in on their commitments and cannot be swayed by FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out) in regards to their no.
Because of this, they are proactively communicative if plans have changed.
Unforeseeable situations happen, and confident people communicate not to leave anyone in the dark. This proactive communication will also result in taking responsibility if they’ve dropped the ball in any way.
The toolkit for confidence comes from having a rich vocabulary
Instead of saying the word awesome over and over, make sure you have other synonyms available to use—for instance, fantastic, breathtaking, astonishing, magnificent, and others.
We feel more confident when we have the words to fit the situation. It is as simple as finding a few synonyms for our most commonly used words.
Have you ever seen someone walk into the room carrying themselves with total confidence or step on a stage looking cool, calm, and collected?
After working with hundreds, even thousands, of executives and business owners over the years, I can let you in on a little secret. Most of those people are not nearly as comfortable as they appear. Instead, they are confident in their why.
When we know our why for doing something, our real why we carry ourselves differently, we carry ourselves with purpose.
The next time you are heading out the door, remember why you are going where you are headed. Is it to a meeting or to the grocery store? Ironically, both of these could have the exact same why.
It’s not just to attend the meeting or to grab a gallon of milk. Instead, perhaps for you, it is to provide a better life for your family.
When we look at the why, we walk with more purpose, we carry ourselves with more purpose, and our confidence shines through.
We are not just logic-based beings, we are biologic. Our brains are magnificent computers. Our bodies are a marvel of ever-changing cells. How we use both of these is key to showing up confidently.
If we don’t think we belong somewhere or fit in, we will shrink down. If we are concerned that someone will find out we don’t know something, we retreat in our presentation.
Think back to being in school, when you didn’t want to be called upon, you put your head down, pulled your shoulders in, and slinked lower in your chair. We all know how to hide. Yet few of us know how to stand strong.
I have quite a story of learning how to stand strong. I literally had to learn how to stand and many other things after an accident. That is when I learned how much physiology matters.
Pull your shoulder back, stand strong, and put a smile on your face.
Forget faking it til you make it
Faking never works. Fraud is always found out. Instead, I encourage you to “act as if”.
If I were a successful leader, how would I carry myself, what would that look like, and what would I do or say? Then do it. If I were a confident speaker, how would I carry myself, what would that look like, and what would I do or say? Then do that.
If I were a professional doing x, y, or z, how would I carry myself, what would that look like, and what would I do or say? Start behaving that way. If you don’t know how someone in the role you want behaves, do something audacious. Pick up the phone and call someone who does it. Ask them for input. Worried they will say no?
A lot of people who have reached success are more than happy to share with those truly interested in finding success too. Yet, if asking them is too bold for you, observe them. Watching what they do will get you started.
Motivational Speaker, Certified Law of Attraction Life Coach, and Meditation Teacher | Founder, The High Vibes Lounge
Confidence is an energy that you cultivate
Confidence is a feeling that you can generate through the belief that you have the ability to figure things out and take action from that place.
People often think that confidence is something one just has. But the truth is, it’s a skill that you get better at through the action steps you take. The problem is that most people do not take action steps as a result of past experiences of rejection, embarrassment, and so on.
The way to overcome that is to cultivate the belief that whatever happens, you have the ability to figure things out along the way, and each step you take is a win-win.
To cultivate that belief, one needs to get super clear about what one wants and the why behind it. One must also be willing to be flexible and adaptable along the way.
The next process is to let your body know that it is safe to take those steps and get out of your comfort zone.
When you are left with experiences that hurt you, your nervous system stays in fight or flight mode and protects you from getting hurt again. So your body will remember the feelings that you felt when you were disappointed or rejected in the past.
That’s why it’s so hard to feel confident. Your body stays in the past feelings, making it harder to believe that you have what it takes.
One way that I encourage my students to overcome that is to create a safe container within their bodies to match the belief that they can figure things out. Start by taking a deep breath in through the nose and exhale slowly through the nose for 90 seconds.
Ride the waves of emotions coming up. When you feel the negative emotions come in that activate the fight or flight response, breathe into it, let your body feel it, and release it through the breath.
From that place, you will begin to feel better and take action from an inspired place rather than from a place of limitation.
The key is to stay consistent with your breathing and control it as you release the tension and energy that has been stored in your body as a result of those past hurtful experiences.
I believe that it doesn’t matter what you’ve been through; confidence is a skill that you can get better at the more you get out of your comfort zone using the process I just described.
Confidence is an energy that you cultivate. The more you take action steps towards your goal, the more you will be able to carry yourself with confidence.
Work on connecting with your talking points
Often, when people don’t carry themselves with certainty (i.e., confidence), it’s because they’re feeling uncertain, possibly anxious about what they’re going to say in an upcoming meeting, interview, presentation, or even on a date!
Here are a few speaking solutions that will easily build confident communication and a confident stride and stance:
- Identify and write out your talking points for the upcoming meeting. Let’s say that it will be an interview.
- Next, rank orders your talking points in order of importance.
- Edit talking points to just the essential words. This should be no more than three sentences.
- Speak your talking points out loud and listen to the tone of your voice. How does it sound? Confident or uncertain? If confident, great.
If uncertain, try this:
- Stand up, and reach out your arm while holding your talking points (on a piece of paper, not on your phone).
- Next, lift your arm up about five inches.
- Now, repeat your talking points while standing.
- Practice several times.
When we have to ‘reach’ a bit with our voices, we automatically sound more confident. When we are looking down at a piece of paper, the energy in our voice is usually not as dynamic. Practice again and listen for a confident tone.
Work on connecting with your talking points, and when speaking, connect with your authenticity and speak with purpose about what it is that you’re saying.
Confident communication starts with being a good listener. Being an intent listener in your meeting will add to your confidence because you’ll be able to converse and answer questions with certainty.
Often while people are ‘listening,’ they’re actually thinking about what they’re going to say next/how they’re going to respond rather than simply listening.
These techniques will improve the way you carry yourself both into and from the meeting.
Building that inner dialogue (talking points) ahead of time, focusing on listening vs. talking, builds a connection with your listener and leads to increased confidence in how you speak and in your presence.
Certified Life Purpose and Confidence Coach
Speak personalize affirmations
Many of us have been taught that when we speak affirmations to ourselves that it will boost our confidence. But general affirmations are just that, general. They do nothing for our personal confidence.
So instead of speaking general affirmations to yourself, speak one thing that’s true for you and add a general affirmation to it.
Instead of saying, “I am powerful,” say, “My beautiful smile is powerful.” It makes a difference when we speak truth into our being, and it will unleash our confidence.
Dress in clothing that makes you feel good
It is no secret that when we get up and get dressed that it can boost how we feel about ourselves. But it is an actual scientific fact.
According to research by the University of Hertfordshire, people dress the way they feel. Therefore, if you dress in clothing that makes you feel good, your confidence is built.
So when you’re not feeling your best, make an extra effort to dress in confidence, and the feeling will more than likely follow.
Learn something new
Our confidence is greatly boosted when we do something that we perceive as difficult or take time to learn new things.
Once we accomplish new goals, it gives us the confidence to accomplish something else. This deepens self-esteem and provides us with a greater sense of self-worth.
And when we feel worthy on the inside, confidence has no choice but to show up on the outside.
Licensed Therapist, Career Counselor, and Well-being Expert | Executive Counselor, Eddins Counseling
Don’t be afraid to speak up for yourself
There are many times in our lives when we are faced with an uncomfortable situation in which someone makes us feel small. Whether intentional or not, it can cause negative impacts like diminished self-esteem.
If we were to speak up for ourselves more, it could help greatly with our confidence and how we carry ourselves on a daily basis.
It’s certainly not easy to speak up, especially if you have more introverted tendencies, but it really does help to give you a confidence boost and to not allow people to walk all over you.
It helps to socialize more often to give you the courage to be able to speak naturally with others. If you can carry a conversation with a stranger, then you can speak up for yourself when you feel you are being belittled or talked down to.
You might find yourself in these types of situations with those who are familiar to you, such as coworkers, friends, or family, or it can happen with strangers too.
If someone says or does something that makes you feel embarrassed or ashamed, simply say it outright to the person.
More often than not, the person will apologize and acknowledge what they did or said. They may not even know they offended you, so it’s important to call people out, so they don’t do the same thing again to others.
Speaking up for yourself often will make it easier to do so each time, and it will show others that you have confidence, and therefore they will leave you alone.
Confidence is trusting your inner value, worthy intentions, capacity to think and act effectively, and ability to accomplish your stated goals and those of others. When you carry yourself with confidence, others around you notice.
Use body language to convey self-respect
A confident person uses body language to convey self-respect, such as sitting, standing, or walking with appropriate posture, dignity, and speed; maintaining cleanliness; or dressing appropriately for the circumstances.
You smile easily and extend a warm welcome through a handshake or with a hug where there is a closer relationship. What you choose to wear can communicate confidence if the clothes are attractive, clean, and fit well. Your walk is upright, and you convey an openness to experience life.
The inner work
You practice confidence effectively when you:
- Demonstrate belief in yourself and the worth of your actions, trusting that you can handle whatever problems or circumstances arise and maintaining the same belief and trust in others.
- Use your talents and abilities to benefit others and yourself.
- Know your principles, opinions, and beliefs and act on them consistently and courteously.
- Assertively make thoughtful decisions and initiate action as appropriate while being aware of the wisdom of consulting and collaborating with others and making unified decisions.
- Pursue worthy goals individually and with others.
- Try something new, trusting that you will learn from the experience, or succeed at accomplishing a goal.
- Seek to overcome personal and group challenges.
- Attempt to understand and overcome doubts and fears, recognize when they are invalid or excessive, and think positive and constructive thoughts instead.
It can be easy to let confidence slip when someone directs criticism toward you or there is a life event that is discouraging. Building and maintaining confidence is a day-to-day effort that takes regular practice.
Social Media Influencer
Let go of who you once were in order to become who you now want to be
I’ve struggled with confidence throughout each phase of my life, and I always thought it was for different reasons, but I finally realized that it was because I didn’t know who I was or what I wanted.
I would act as if I had everything figured out, and it looked that way on the outside, but on the inside, I was shaking. It wasn’t until I stopped running and turned to the mirror that everything changed.
I took off the mask, faced the real me, and accepted what was there. Now that I’ve made it through, I’m writing this to help you do the same.
If we desire to carry ourselves with confidence, we must first understand what that means. What is confidence, and how can we embrace it in our daily lives? What happens if we don’t?
Confidence is the ability to trust one’s self and exist freely beyond the limitations of judgment. Many people think being confident is something we do, but it’s really just something we become as we travel through life and evolve.
It’s not about forcing anything or pretending to be something we’re not; it’s about knowing who we are and what we’re capable of. It’s about approaching every experience with an open mind and a willingness to adapt.
It’s about expressing ourselves authentically while operating from a state of love and faith, as opposed to fear and doubt. It’s about letting our light shine, even in the darkest of places or times.
Reaching this point on our journeys requires awareness and an understanding of one’s inner world, which means it’s necessary to spend time in a state of self-reflection in order to learn and grow.
- Who are you deep down?
- What are your patterns?
- Why don’t you trust in yourself and your abilities?
- Do you react to situations, or do you pause, breathe, and respond?
These are just some of the shadows that need to be observed on the path to liberation.
Know yourself and know your limits, then stretch them even further so you’re prepared for any situation which may come your way. By cultivating this type of wisdom, you’ll begin to move through the world without hesitation while inspiring others to do the same.
If this seems impossible, think about the opposite path. Would you rather live in joy while you explore the world or be caged by illusions that are powered by your own mind?
The choice is yours. Let go of who you once were in order to become who you now want to be.
Founder, Don’t Do It Yourself
As an expert in your field, you have a lot of knowledge that you can use to help others. But it’s not just what you know; it’s also how you carry yourself that makes an impression.
Here are some tips on increasing your confidence when dealing with clients and customers:
Dress the part
The way you present yourself physically is often the first thing people notice about you. Choose clothing that makes you feel confident, and keep it clean and well-fitting to project an image of professionalism and competence.
For example, if you’re in a business suit, you’re more likely to carry yourself like a professional than if you were wearing ripped jeans and a t-shirt.
Project confidence in your body language
Avoid bad posture, slouching, or fidgeting when meeting with clients or customers; instead, stand up straight and keep your arms relaxed, as moving them around too much can seem like nervous tics.
Don’t forget to smile, too — it not only helps you feel more confident but also shows others that you’re approachable and friendly, making them more likely to buy from you or refer others to your business.
Speak with authority
Your voice is another key factor in how people perceive you, so use it to your advantage.
Keep your tone confident and clear when speaking with clients or customers, making eye contact when they look at you and smiling about the topic at hand (even if you don’t feel like smiling).
Eye contact is a powerful way to show that you’re engaged, attentive, and interested in what the other person is saying or asking.
Be proactive and prepared
While you can’t control everything that happens, you can prepare yourself for any situation by going over potential problems in advance.
Some examples include researching your clients to be sure you understand their needs, coming up with solutions ahead of time for unexpected issues, and writing down your own questions and requests to make sure you get everything you need.
Have a positive attitude
Being confident doesn’t mean that nothing can faze you or throw you off balance — it just means that regardless of what happens, you choose to stay focused on the positive aspects of the situation and move forward with a positive attitude.
People will notice and appreciate your attitude, which can help you stand out from the competition as someone who truly cares about their work and clients.
Certified Personal Trainer | Founder, Muscle and Brawn
Learn to be assertive and take a stand
Assertiveness is a characteristic of those who know how to be sure of themselves. That’s not to say that even an insecure person can’t learn to be assertive.
It’s all about getting involved. Always saying yes and punctually indulging others doesn’t help our self-esteem and, above all, makes us appear like soft people without nerve, people who don’t take a stand and have no personality.
Self-confidence can’t grow if we do things that make other people judge us in the same way, like acting in ways that hurt the respect we should have for ourselves and our freedom to choose and do what makes us happy.
We don’t have to like everyone, and we don’t have to like them. It is useless to please anyone.
Learning about what we are worth also means that declining an invitation, request, or order is not as impossible or unthinkable as it seems.
Learn to be happy about wins and glad about losses
How many people downplay a win because they don’t want to seem arrogant, expect some payback, or are superstitious?
And how many people, when they lose, spend more time thinking about what they’ve lost, all the hopes they had that were dashed, and the disappointment they would have caused in others instead of appreciating what they can learn from losing?
With a bit of healthy irony, let’s ask ourselves what all this is for, if it is for anything, and, most importantly, why it helps us always worry about other people. Certainly not to be more self-assured.
Business Growth Strategist
Focus on what you have, not what you lack
- Focus on what you have, not what you lack.
- Don’t compare yourself to others.
- Don’t let fear and anxiety hold you back.
- Be true to yourself, and don’t allow other people’s opinions of you to influence your behavior.
- Be aware of negative self-talk.
Practice positive affirmations
Positive affirmations are positive statements about yourself that you repeat to yourself to reinforce your strengths and abilities.
They can be as simple as “I love my hair,” “I am a kind and generous person,” or “I will succeed at what I set out to do.” It’s important to stay positive, as others can feel your energy.
To start practicing positive affirmations, pick a few that resonate with you and say them out loud in front of a mirror each day until they feel natural.
If it helps, write them down and carry them with you so they’re always available when needed.
Over time, add more affirmations until they begin to form the foundation for how you view yourself in the world—a self-image based on positivity rather than negativity.
CEO and Founder, Bullseye Locations
I think confidence in the workplace and in the world of business is eventually a double-edged sword.
There is a genuine kind of confidence that comes from experiential learning, and then there is another kind of confidence that you initially have to fake. The former pertains to the type of confidence that you simply cannot attain without stepping into the professional world and making those first moves.
For example, let’s say you have always been passionate about being a football coach.
However, you simply cannot be confident coaching a professional team without having experienced the learning curve whereby you first manage amateur teams and learn the tricks of the trade there.
This is the kind of learning that helps you confront many fears, such as imposter syndrome, etc.
Street smartness and faking it till you make it
Secondly, however, I also want to shed some light on the opinion that no matter how highly qualified you become in your line of work, there are always going to be instances that are novel, decision-making dilemmas that are unprecedented.
In such scenarios, since you do not have prior experience, there you are bound to feel sensations such as those of doubt, fear, and underconfidence. This makes it necessary to show up confidently still, even if you have to fake it after having made a decision in order to be able to stick by it.
To have the inner resolve to see through a process and decision. This is especially needed when you have other stakeholders who are also directly involved or potentially influenced by the choice you propose in front of them.
Mind you, this does not justify being complacent or secretive about decisions. It takes for granted the idea that prior research is conducted to the fullest.
Founder, Grab Your Happy
As a high-earning copywriter, online entrepreneur—and a single mom—I’ve experienced the value that comes with confidence.
Building confidence is what enabled me to claim my value with clients, grow my income, and live a fulfilling life on my
That said, I know that confidence doesn’t always come naturally. For many people (and women more often than men, unfortunately), confidence is a trait that needs nurturing in order to bloom.
Push yourself outside your comfort zone
Moving through life with confidence starts with self-awareness. The first step to becoming more confident is to start trusting in yourself and your actions. That takes bravery.
I like to think of bravery as muscle. And here’s the good part: It’s a muscle that is easy to bulk up quickly!
Start today by pushing yourself ever-so-slightly outside your comfort zone.
Start with something really small if you need to (like deciding what you’re going to eat at a restaurant without waiting to see what your friend’s order—or taking a small, decisive action at work without consulting with anyone else).
Then keep taking actions and/or making decisions every day that continue to push your boundaries of comfort.
The more you trust and rely on yourself for answers and guidance, the more confident and self-aware you’ll become. Pushing yourself out of your comfort zone is scary at first. But the results are addicting. Stick with it, and you’ll start seeing exponential results.
Soon enough, you’ll be carrying yourself with confidence—and reaping all kinds of unexpected benefits.
Embody confidence physically to both feel and appear confident
Confidence is eight parts body language and two parts communication. Humans are ultimately social creatures. We all learn conscious and subconscious strategies for reading other people from a young age.
Confidence is purely about expression and assertion and comes naturally to some of us while requiring practice from others.
To appear more confident:
- Take up space.
- Make a giant ‘X’ with your body before an important meeting or presentation.
- Pose like Wonder Woman.
We must embody confidence physically to both feel and appear confident. Keep your chin up, watch your spinal posture, and be mindful of where your hands go when you’re talking to someone.
Folks with confidence use their hands to speak and emphasize talking points. They don’t pick at themselves or their appearance when speaking, and they keep eye contact comfortably.
It all takes practice, especially when it feels counterintuitive. But the reality is that each of us deserves to take up space confidently. We should believe in ourselves and show that in how we carry our bodies.
Having self-respect and respect for others is, above all, demonstrating confidence in yourself.
Frequently Asked Questions
What creates confidence?
Building confidence involves a combination of factors, such as:
• Self-awareness: Understanding your strengths, weaknesses, and values allows you to recognize your abilities and work on areas that need improvement.
• Practice and preparation: Gaining experience and refining your skills through practice helps you feel more equipped to handle various situations, ultimately bolstering your confidence.
• Positive self-talk: Encouraging yourself with positive affirmations and replacing negative thoughts with empowering beliefs can nurture a confident mindset.
• Goal-setting and achievement: Setting realistic goals and working towards achieving them helps build a sense of accomplishment, fostering self-confidence.
• Surround yourself with support: Engaging with positive and supportive individuals who believe in your abilities can strengthen your self-esteem and contribute to your overall confidence.
What are the signs of confidence?
Signs of confidence can be observed in a person’s behavior, body language, and communication style. Some of these signs include:
• Maintaining eye contact during conversations indicates engagement and self-assurance.
• Standing tall with good posture projects strength and confidence.
• Speaking clearly and assertively without being overly aggressive or submissive.
• Being open to feedback and willing to learn from mistakes shows self-awareness and a growth mindset.
• A strong sense of self and an ability to express one’s thoughts, feelings, and opinions without fear of judgment or rejection.
Why am I unconfident?
There are various reasons why you might be feeling unconfident. Some of the common factors include:
• Past experiences: Negative experiences, such as failure or rejection, can negatively impact your self-esteem and make it difficult to feel confident in similar situations moving forward.
• Fear of judgment: Worrying about what others think of you can hold you back from expressing yourself and taking risks, leading to feelings of insecurity.
• Perfectionism: Setting unrealistic standards for yourself can lead to a constant sense of inadequacy, as you may feel like you’re never good enough.
• Lack of self-awareness: Not fully understanding your strengths and weaknesses can make it difficult to build self-confidence, as you may not know where to focus your efforts for improvement.
• Social comparison: Constantly comparing yourself to others can erode your self-confidence, especially if you perceive them as more successful, attractive, or talented than you.
Is confidence attractive?
Yes, confidence is indeed attractive. When you display confidence, it signals to others that you believe in your abilities, value yourself, and can handle various situations effectively. This magnetic quality draws people towards you, as they tend to feel more at ease in your presence. Furthermore, confident individuals often radiate positive energy, naturally appealing to others.
What sets confidence and arrogance apart?
Confidence and arrogance may seem similar at times, but they are quite different. Confidence is characterized by healthy self-esteem and a belief in one’s abilities without undermining others. It is often accompanied by humility and openness to learning.
On the other hand, arrogance is an exaggerated sense of self-importance, often manifesting as a belief that one is superior to others. Arrogant individuals tend to be dismissive, condescending and lack empathy, which can hinder the development of genuine connections.
How can I project confidence in my body language?
To project confidence in your body language, consider the following tips:
• Maintain good posture: Stand or sit up straight with your shoulders back and your head held high. This demonstrates self-assurance and poise.
• Make eye contact: Engage with others by looking them in the eye, which shows that you’re attentive and interested.
• Use open gestures: Avoid crossing your arms or legs; instead, use open and relaxed gestures that invite interaction.
• Smile genuinely: A warm and genuine smile conveys friendliness and approachability.
• Speak with a strong, clear voice: A firm, well-paced voice communicates self-assuredness and competence.
What are some common misconceptions about confidence?
There are several misconceptions about confidence, including:
• Confidence is innate: While some individuals may be naturally more confident, confidence can be cultivated and developed over time through practice and self-improvement.
• Confidence means never feeling fear or doubt: In reality, confident people also experience fear and self-doubt. The difference is that they acknowledge these feelings and choose to act despite them, relying on their abilities to handle challenges.
• Confidence equates to extroversion: Confidence can be displayed by both introverts and extroverts. While extroverts might express their confidence in more outgoing ways, introverts can also demonstrate quiet confidence through their demeanor and actions.
• Confident people never fail: Everyone experiences failure at some point. Confident individuals understand that failure is a part of growth and learning, and they use these experiences to build resilience and improve themselves.
• Confidence is synonymous with arrogance: As discussed earlier, confidence is rooted in self-belief and humility, while arrogance is an overinflated sense of self-worth and superiority. These qualities are distinct and should not be confused with one another.
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