Confidence is a necessary skill both in life and in business if you want to be successful. Besides helping you feel more capable of attaining your own goals, it can inspire others to go after theirs, too.
So what do you need to know or do in order to strengthen this ability? To find out, we asked members of the Young Entrepreneur Council for their secrets to feeling more confident, and these are some of the habits they said helped them and can help you, too.
The practice of detachment is critical to my confidence—I approach each situation without attachment to an outcome. Think of how many times considering an outcome elicits a state of fear: What if I fail? What if I make a fool of myself? Act without worrying about imperfect results, and you’ll find you feel more confident with every step forward.
2. No Ego and Constant Learning
Shakespeare said, “A fool thinks himself wise, but a wise man knows himself to be a fool.” Remaining open to learning new things and understanding that there are always ways to get better can create true confidence. This is because you approach each new situation as a learning experience. You bring your own expertise with you, but that can always be built upon and improved even further. This leaves no room for insecurity!
3. Positive Self-Talk
My secret to having confidence is to catch myself when I’m having negative thoughts and to actively think the opposite. When my mind thinks that I’m not able to do something, I talk myself out of it, and that gives me a boost of confidence and the energy I need to complete the task successfully.
4. Positive Body Language
There is a great deal of science that backs up how standing with your feet wide and hands on your hips makes you feel and exude more confidence, and I can vouch for that. Before I start work or meet with a client, I hold a positive and confident posture for a few minutes, and I feel more open and able to tackle any situation that might be thrown at me.
5. Celebrating Wins
When we experience failure, our brains release cortisol, which affects our physical health, causes depression and saps confidence. Contrarily, when we win, our brain releases endorphins, dopamine and serotonin. By writing down our wins as a daily reflection, no matter how small they are, and focusing on the steps that got us there, we can trigger positive physical benefits and spike our confidence.
6. Focusing on Others
Insecurity comes from focusing on yourself and your flaws, so turn the tables and focus on others. Being genuinely interested in other people and giving sincere compliments makes you more likeable and improves your relationships, which will also help build confidence in yourself.
7. Recognizing What Makes You Unique
There’s no one who does things exactly the way you do. Think about all the things that wouldn’t be in the world if you had never put them out there—and treasure those qualities and strengths in yourself and your business.
8. Tracking Your Progress
I believe that making small improvements in my life has drastically increased my confidence. We are so used to thinking of things in broad strokes, and it’s easy to lose track of your small wins. I like to keep a journal where I write down the things I’m thankful for and my wins every single day. It’s easy to see progress being made if I look back months or even weeks.
Faith comes in many forms and practices, but having faith, and doing exercises to further it, can be the most powerful thing in the entire world. When you know there’s something bigger, it’s hard to even sweat the small stuff.
Humility is an essential part of how you build confidence. People who boast a lot give the impression that they are hiding insecurity. The reason is that when you have many accomplishments, they will speak for you. Never sell yourself short, but when you are humble, you let people focus on your success and not on you. That will build up your confidence and people’s image of you.
11. Shifting Your Beliefs
True confidence is not the result of changing your motivations, thoughts or daily affirmations. If you want real, lasting confidence, you have to work at the deeper level of your beliefs and change what you believe about yourself and the world around you so that it is empowering. You can do this by questioning negative thoughts and where they come from, and shifting those beliefs positively.
Read next: How to Become Truly Confident
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