So much of our internal confidence and external facade is shown by our body language. From the way we stand to the expressions on our faces, our physical demeanor not only affects how we’re seen by others but also how we project our own internal feelings. There are subconscious inklings that give rise to how we come off to someone for the first time.
The way you think of yourself portrays how others think of you. If you think of yourself as awkward, timid, or shy, you subconsciously feel you need to live up to those expectations. Why not flip that on its head? If you think highly of yourself, you have no choice but to live up to those expectations. And this is where self-confidence tips prove to be useful.
“Confidence is contagious. So is lack of confidence.” —Vince Lombardi
According to Albert Bandura, confidence refers to the strength of belief. To instill confidence, you need to have convictions in your own belief. Rosabeth Moss Kanter, author of Confidence: How Winning Streaks and Losing Streaks Begin and End, writes, “Confidence isn’t optimism or pessimism, and it’s not a character attribute. It’s the expectation of a positive outcome.”
You need to expect things to fall the way you want, and you instill that through consistent belief and positive self-talk. There are also tiny habit changes that can intrinsically give you the boost you need to walk a little more upright.
Body language plays a critical role in projecting confidence. If you’re nervous or indecisive, you don’t want to come off as such. A wide stance and open palms show honesty and openness, whereas putting your hands in your pockets indicate that you’re nervous and feel uncomfortable. Crossing your arms may indicate to the person speaking that you are disinterested or closed off.
The way you choose to stand may actually be a gigantic indicator of how you are perceived. Leaning back in your chair may show that you are relaxed and confident, according to one Harvard psychologist.
Here are a few quick self-confidence tips that can help you not only project an air of confidence to others but also give your internal monologue an encouraging boost. None of these are particularly revolutionary, nor will they take care of everything by themselves. Pick and choose the ingredients that work for you. Give a couple a try, if they work, stick with them. If they don’t, try others.
1. Stop Caring About What Other People Think
The most common self-confidence tip is to stop caring about what other people think. People don’t care about you as much as you think. They’re too busy thinking about what other people think about them. Now, isn’t that liberating?
The first thing you do when you wake up in the morning should be to smile. Dr. Eva Ritvo, a psychiatrist and the co-author of The Beauty Prescription: The Complete Formula for Looking and Feeling Beautiful, suggests smiling at yourself in the mirror because it not only helps triggers something called “mirror neurons,” but it can also help us calm down and re-center if we’re feeling anxious.
3. Be Aware of What Your Body is Saying
Research says that posing in certain positions is beneficial for boosting your mood. The “Wonderwoman” stance with legs spread and hands and hips tends to show the biggest post. Overall, having a good posture helps improve confidence.
4. Pay Attention to Your Hands
Other than our face, our hands are one of the most expressive parts of our body. Actors pay special attention to their hands in scenes because they know that certain hand gestures can express emotion without a word being spoken.
5. Alter Your Look
Getting a new haircut may provide a temporary boost in your self-esteem, but it can also give you that pep in your step for a first date, a speech, or just going over a friend’s place. You could also have your clothes tailored, even if it’s as simple as hemming that pair of jeans to your ankle.
6. Change Your Physiology
Tony Robbins says that the way to change your state of mind is to move your body. Changing your physiology is an often overlooked self-confidence tip. Experiment with changing your physiology with hot or cold contrast in the shower to elevate your immune response and jack up your energy.
7. Use Positive Self-Talk and Visualization
Before bed or first thing in the morning, close your eyes and relax your body completely. Stay connected to positive thoughts and feel the sensations of those things happening in your mind’s eye.
Self-confidence is something that can be built up with time, effort, and consistency. The key is to find the self-confidence tips that work best for you and stick with them. By projecting an air of confidence, you not only improve your interactions with others, but you also improve how you feel about yourself overall. So go ahead, walk a little taller, and see how it changes your life.