If you want to boost your self confidence this article has seven tips to help. But as a starting point consider that being an introvert is not the same as lacking confidence, that’s a common misconception. You may also like to read “Are introverts confident?”
Confidence generally, is different to confidence for a specific task. One is about believing more in one’s ability to succeed and meet life’s challenges, the other is about success at something specific. If you wish to be more confident at a particular task, practice it and adopt the points below.
7 tips to boost your self confidence
If you wish to increase your confidence generally, these seven tips will help:
- Your body language: The studies showing only 7% of our message is what we say and 55% is body language (or other varying percentages) are vastly and inaccurately cited out of context. However, there’s an element of truth in that standing tall, making eye contact, and smiling at networking events or work social events make us appear more confident. Appearing more confident is often all we need in the short term (if you already have the knowledge you need). Try the opposite: standing small, avoiding eye contact and being in the corner makes me less confident; how about you?
- Stop judging yourself. Stop judging and comparing yourself to extroverts. The more we accept ourselves the more confident we tend to become. I’ve given up counting the number of clients whose confidence changed simply when they realised their traits were only introversion, that they aren’t the only ones and that this isn’t a problem. How would you answer “What I love the most about my introversion is…”
- Be passionate: I loathe the phrase on CV’s and in LinkedIn profiles, but people who have a passion for something tend to exude confidence on that subject. Linking it to work social events allows confidence to show. Why do you think I talk about Scuba diving so much, on stage and when networking? When we have a passion for a subject even the shyest introvert can talk at length and sound more confident. That tends to have a halo effect and be transferred to the other things we need to discuss.
- Use your strengths: When you stop doubting yourself and use your strengths there’s an amazing transformation. Instead of “Networking doesn’t work for me”, use your Introvert listening skills, people appreciate being really listened to and engaged with and then networking becomes effective – leading to more confidence. Which of your strengths could you make more use of?
- Manage your energy: I know that if my energy drops, I don’t perform well. That isn’t just about sleep, it’s about making sure I have time alone to recharge. When my extrovert friends realised that me disappearing wasn’t because of them they weren’t unhappy about it. As an introvert solitude is a need of yours (just like being around people is for extroverts). It’s easier to be confident when I’m not exhausted.
- Comfort zones: Ignore those who tell you to just step outside of your comfort zone. But stretch your comfort zones gently and without judgement. You’re naturally more confident in your comfort zones, and over time your comfort zones will be very different. Continually growing in this way will increase your confidence as you meet more and more situations.
- Labels are not your destiny: The introvert label can be very empowering as you realise that there’s nothing wrong with you. Labels can help us to diagnose and sometimes suggest short cuts to solutions. But your label is not your destiny, don’t say “I can’t do that because I’m an introvert”.