Become More Confident Today!
While it's nice to receive external validation such as compliments and affirmations to make you feel good about yourself—those good feelings—which often translate to experiencing a bout of confidence, is really an inside job. Relying on someone else to build you up and make you feel adequate, can be problematic. Why? Because the day the compliments stop, you deflate like a ballon whose air has been let out.
I'm not saying it's not wonderful to hear nice things. I love hearing flattering things about my work, my paintings, my music, etc. But I don't stop feeling confident if I don't receive those validations.
I've often heard, "I was fine until he left. Now I don't have any confidence. He took it with him." Really? How is that even possible? No one can take your confidence unless you willingly give it away.
It's in you to be confident whether or not you receive external approval. It's important to get to the point where you feel fine about yourself—the person you are—regardless of what others think of you. Remember, everyone is going to have an opinion about you. Good, bad, or indifferent. So what?
How can you become more confident? Below, I've delineated a few ways that can help you be the best version of yourself. Simply by taking a few easy-to-implement steps, you can start to feel more confident in no time (without anyone's else's validation).
You're going to pretend you're an actor going on an audition. In order to get the part, you need to act like a "confident" person. Think about what that looks like. While you're thinking, here are the things you'll need to do.
1. Groom yourself. That means, look your best. Have clean hair, clothes, teeth. When you feel clean and put together, you feel more confident. It's automatic and easy to do.
2. Dress confidently. I know sweats and lounge pants are comfy, but try dressing up. Nice, casual is fine. It makes a huge difference on how you feel. You can perform this test personal test: Go to the store wearing sweats and tennis shoes, then go again the following day nicely dressed and put together. Notice the difference in how you feel, in how you present yourself to the world.
2) Stand up straight!
Good posture is very important. If you walk around slouched over, it's almost like you're trying to hide yourself. If you want to feel confident, check out your posture. Try this little test: stand in front of a mirror and slouch. How do you look? How do you feel? Now, stand up straight. Shoulders back, chin up. Do you see the difference? You won't only see the difference, you'll feel it too.
No one thinks much of a sloucher. So stand up straight and proud.
It goes a long way. It will make you seem approachable and friendly. No one wants to talk to someone with a big frown on their face. And did you know smiles are contagious. If you smile at someone for say, seven seconds, they can't help but smile back. Try it sometime.
4) Eye contact
When you meet someone, look them in the eye. It makes you appear honest and forthright. Don't stare intensely right at them; that could seem creepy. Just a nice, interested gaze will do.
5) Body language
Make sure your body language makes you approachable. Look through some magazines. See if you can spot body language that's open and approachable, then contrast it with a closed body style.
Also, when you're in a group situation, don’t hide in the corner with your arms crossed. Or sit looking down at your phone, browsing through your Social Media pages. That's off-putting and will keep most people away, seeing as you're more interested in what's happening elsewhere in the virtual world than you are in what's happening in real life.
6) Stay updated on current events
You’ll always have something to talk about.
Make sure you know what's going on in the world. Keep yourself informed; that way you'll always have something to talk about. For example, "Did you hear about what happened to Tiger Woods? Terrible accident; he's fortunate to be alive!" Look through the news feed. You'll always have something interesting to say.
7) Ask lots of questions.
It makes people feel like you’re interested.
Asking questions makes people feel like they're interesting. "Hey, what do you think about..." Or "What is your favorite thing to do on the weekends?" Come up with your own. Or check this out, 57 Killer Conversation Starters So You Can Start A Conversation With Anyone, Anytime.
Feeling confident is your for the taking. It really only requires a little effort. And once you've built up that confidence, no one can take it away, not unless you let them.