8 Simple Ways to Be More Confident - This is the Life! - Build the Life of Your Dreams

8 Simple Ways to Be More Confident

May 16, 2020

confident woman

Some people are just born confident. The world seems to smile at them and they get everything they want - the job, the amazing opportunity or the promotion, even if they're not necessarily the best candidates.

Why is confidence important?

Imagine you are lost in the woods with two people and you're trying to find your way back. One of them says, "It has to be that way, I'm sure!", while the other person says, "I think it's the other way but I'm not really sure, I could be wrong..." Which person and path do you think you're more likely to follow? The person who seems most sure of what they're saying, of course!

The truth is confidence instills trust in others - it makes other people believe that person is great at what they do and is ready for challenges/opportunities. 

Why, you ask? Because confident people don't seem to have any doubts about their worth!

There's also the fact that confidence will make you feel more positive and in control of your fate - which can help you be happier.

Am I doomed, then?

If you aren't a naturally-confident person, I want you to know that this is something that YOU CAN work on and improve.

I'm not that kind of person either, but human beings can learn and develop skills - that's what makes us such an advanced species!

Below you will find a list of 8 simple things that I find are the most important things that have helped me build my confidence:

1. Preparation

Being well prepared for whatever you're going to face helps you feel like you’re in control of the situation, because you know what to expect and you've rehearsed that moment.

If, for example, you have to make a presentation at a meeting and you practice your talking points and answers to potential questions that may be asked, you'll go into the meeting feeling more confident about your capability to do a good job.

And the simple fact that you feel that way will show! People can tell by your body language and your tone of voice that you know what you are doing.

But if you're nervous, it'll also show - you might fidget or not be able to stay in your spot, you may talk too fast or your voice might tremble...

All of this will deter from the message that you are trying to get across and make your audience feel uncomfortable. Besides, if you're calm and collected, you'll be able to get your points across more effectively, allowing the quality of your work to shine!

So definitely prepare as best as you can for any task you need to tackle.

2. Practice getting out of your comfort zone

Are you guilty of running away from challenges or opportunities because of your lack of confidence?

If your boss came to you and told you to lead a meeting, would you be happy to do it and agree immediately and excitedly or would you cringe inwardly and try to get out of it because you hate being in the limelight and think you're going to bomb it?

If you're the second one, I feel you... But at some point you've got to stop throwing yourself under the bus and start putting yourself out there!

Start saying yes to challenges and taking every opportunity to get out of your comfort zone.

It might be nerve-wracking for a little bit but it's so empowering to face your fears and achieve something!

In time, it will become easier and you will start feeling more comfortable in these situations.

3. Be presentable

Feeling good about the way you look is an instant boost to your confidence. Is it superficial? A little bit, sure - but it works!

So whenever you want to feel more confident, pick an outfit you feel good in.

Opt for something comfortable too because if your clothes keep itching or you can't walk comfortably in them, you will probably feel very awkward.

If you like, you can do your hair or wear a little bit of make up, too!

In short, if you’re feeling elegant and comfortable, you will get a much-needed confidence boost and that will definitely show in your body language!

Some people might also see this as a sign that you are serious about your task if you view it as an occasion to wear something more formal or to be well-dressed.

4. Improve yourself

There are a lot of reasons why you may lack confidence - try to pinpoint and list them. I'm sure there is a way for you to improve in all of them!

So, for example, if you're not a very good speaker and you want to be able to speak more confidently in front of your peers, colleagues or even a public audience, you could work on your public speaking skills!

If you are a bit socially awkward and you'd like to know how to network, how to meet people and make friends by engaging in interesting conversations, develop those skills and learn the best tips and tricks on those subjects.

If your confidence issues stem from body image issues, you could probably do with some techniques on how to overcome these issues, namely how to not care about other people's opinions so much and not to talk down on yourself. However, if you just need a little boost, you could explore how to look elegant and put together!

There are lots of online courses for learning and developing all sorts of skills and there will never be a shortage of books in this world. 

Learn the secrets of confident people.

Pick one area to improve in and start applying what you learn as soon as you can!

5. Learn the magic tricks

Often, our lack of confidence comes from not knowing what other people are thinking and being afraid of not knowing how to act if someone does or says something unexpected.

Things like body language and social cues are very important to be able to read situations better, so try to learn how to look out for these signs and interpret them.

If you can read situations accurately, you will probably notice little things that tell you what to expect and give you a better idea of what to say when faced with them.

You will also appear more confident to other people if they see that you know how to steer a conversation in a better direction and if your body language is showing people you are confident.

6. Know your worth

List all the things that you’re good at. Seriously. Don't sell yourself short and recognize that you do have value. 

Ask someone else to name a few things you're good at if you need to.

Read it over a few times if need be to engrave that in your mind. Stick that list somewhere where you'll see it every day. 

I know I'm being a little aggressive with this point but honestly, why do we forget about our qualities and our valuable skills so easily?! It's infuriating that we do this to ourselves!

Realizing - or remembering - that you have great qualities and a set of valuable skills that not everyone else has will make you feel less insecure.

Admire these traits of yours and make sure you don't forget them!

7. It's not a crime to pause and think

One thing I've struggled with is fear of having those moments when your mind goes blank and you forget what you were saying or you start to question your whole reasoning.

However, the more I observe other people who put themselves out there, the more I notice that they're not perfect either and they need to stop and think or to correct themselves sometimes. Their speech isn't fluid and unwavering at all times. 

And when I'm watching other people giving a speech or a presentation and they stop to think about what they're going to say next, I don't really find it as dramatic as I do when I'm afraid of it happening to me.

The truth is it's not a crime if you pause to think about your next sentence or about how to answer a question...

So don't be too hard on yourself and realize that other people don't really notice or think much of those things that you spend so much time overthinking or being embarrassed about...

8. Adopt a "whatever happens, happens" mentality

I'm not saying not to care about anything.

But if you 'do your homework' and prepare yourself for whatever task you're going to tackle, you've done all you can do. All that's left for you to do is to go with the flow.

Small awkward moments happen, technical issues happen, people disagreeing with your opinion happens - don't take these things too seriously.

If something doesn't go great, there will be more opportunities! You did what you could and you put yourself out there, which are the most important things. You will also have gained a learning experience and next time around you will be armed with more knowledge and experience.

There's something empowering about this mindset - it doesn't mean you don't care, it means you're not going to let external things dictate how you're going to feel about yourself.

Ultimately, this will help you be more confident because you're not risking your self-worth every time you put yourself out there.

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Over to you! 
What do you find hinders your confidence the most? 
Have you tried applying any of these tips?

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