5 Simple Confidence Boosters

Sep 7, 2019

Do you always feel on top of your game? That “I’ve got this!” feeling doesn’t come naturally to everyone. Many confident individuals have down days too, but they could be better at hiding it. So I’ve created a short list of activities that anybody can practise to help exude confidence. One or two of these techniques should be enough for some; others may want to try all of them. I use them all randomly when I need a quick hit of confidence.

Power Posing

Professor Amy Cuddy of the Harvard Business School has created a wave of power posers around the world. If you haven’t yet watched her on Ted Talks, please do so (after reading this). It’s the ultimate long-term solution for those who feel powerless. When we stand with our arms in a V or with our hands on our hips, our brain sends a message to our endocrine system to release higher levels of testosterone (the dominant hormone). It also reduces the amount of cortisol and adrenalin in our blood (stress hormones). If we practise power posing for just 2 minutes in private (no longer or it may have the reverse effect), we feel more powerful and that leads to assertiveness. So find a bathroom stall or an empty stairwell and strike a pose.

Sternum Up

I distinctly remember watching Anthony Robbins on stage many years ago in Sydney. He demonstrated how vital it is to lift your sternum if you want to hold your own. If you locate your sternum or breastbone and lift it by just 2mm, you change your physical appearance. That makes an impact on whoever you’re speaking to. They see somebody who is self-assured. They notice! Watch yourself in the mirror and then practise it when you’re in a crowd. It’s all about the 2mm.

Positive Self Talk

Lisa M. Hayes wrote, “Be careful how you’re talking to yourself because you are listening.” If we cannot say good things about ourselves and are often self-deprecating, it doesn’t bode well for how others view us.  Why not create a written inventory of all the things you’re good at? List skills, qualities and personality traits. You may surprise yourself how long the list is. Don’t hold back. You may also want to add those things that you are grateful for, as that never hurt in the confidence arena. And when you receive a compliment, say thank you graciously and add it to the list.

Be Pals

We all require human contact in more or less degrees. This is key to survival. Often loneliness can become so overwhelming that its impacts our self-esteem. So why not call your bestie or close friend to have a chat? We have the technology to reach people across the globe. We simply need to make the effort.  It’s amazing how just one short conversation with somebody that we trust can help alleviate feelings of loneliness and anxiety.

Practise Confident Communication

Assertive people speak clearly, positively and simply. Be clear. Don’t be afraid to ask for exactly what you want. Instead of saying, “It would be nice if you could sometimes notice how bogged down I am” say, “I want you to take the time to check in with me every week.” Be positive. People like people with energy and who make them feel good. Use phrases like “Let’s work through this…,” “How about we…” It also helps to use active sentences like “Please finalise and send me that report” instead of “That report needs to be finalised and sent to me.” Speak simply. Make your point in as few words as possible. You don’t need to embellish your message. If somebody doesn’t understand they will ask you.

With practice, these behaviours eventually become second nature and your so called ‘state’ will remain forever changed.