Confidence may not be innate in all of us, but the great news is that it can be acquired. Confident people are successful, they take risks, they live life to the full and they don't let setbacks knock them down.

It’s no wonder we all want to know their secret.  Just like any other skill though, confidence can be learned.  A little daily practice is all that is required and, before too long, self-confidence can become your default setting.  Here are seven steps towards mastering the art of gaining confidence (and inspiring it in others too!):

1. Adjust your body language and presentation

Sitting straight and standing tall are two of the simplest tricks in the repertoire of confident people.  A slumped posture indicates defeat, so pull back those shoulders.  Equally important is eye contact, a firm handshake, a warm smile and a purposeful stride.  Speaking slowly sounds sincere and helps others to understand your points.  Looking good goes hand-in-hand with these measures.  Wear clothes that are freshly laundered and that complement your frame, whatever the occasion.  Keep your hair clean and cut, and pay attention to details like polished shoes and neat fingernails.  You will feel better, knowing you look your best, and you will radiate self-confidence.

2. Say farewell to failure

Negative thoughts can lead to giving up.  If you allow yourself to think that you are not clever enough, attractive enough, talented enough or athletic enough, those mantras create a self-fulfilling prophecy.  Instead of focusing on what cannot be done, switch your thoughts to what you can achieve.  There is a solution to all problems, and with a little extra effort, you can find a way to conquer adversity.  Never say never!

3. Stay away from negative influences

Unfortunately, some people have the habit of pulling us down in their interactions with us.  They may be critical, judgemental, harsh or dismissive.  In other words, they always want to “rain on your parade.”  These sorts of relationships can destroy confidence, and lead to self-doubt and a negative mindset.  These people either need to be avoided altogether, or, if necessary, treated with positivity and enthusiasm.  Negativity can be contagious, so don’t catch it.  You may need to weed out some friends and contacts if they continue to dampen your spirits.

4. Preparation is paramount

It is a lot easier to feel and be confident when you know what you’re doing.  Whatever your occupation or goal, learn as much as you possibly can about it.  Keeping an open and enquiring mind is essential for empowerment and growth.  Being well-prepared and well-informed is a huge asset in almost anything you undertake.  Time spent in preparation will pay dividends in accomplishment, and the satisfaction this brings will only add to your ongoing confidence.

5. Be thankful

A gratitude diary – a daily reminder of all the good things that have happened, however small, and all the reasons to be grateful – is a habit that is kept by many highly successful people.  It’s a life-affirming and confidence-boosting record.  Even on a bad day, when everything seems to have gone wrong, you can still give thanks for a beautiful sunset or a tasty meal.

6. Maintain your health

A balanced diet, exercise, restful sleep and fresh air are all well-known necessities for a healthy life, but they can often be neglected, particularly when we are busy or stressed.  Self-neglect in any of these areas is not beneficial, so take good care of yourself.

7. Random acts of kindness

Freely giving up your time and effort in order to help others is guaranteed to provide powerful feelings of satisfaction.  Consider volunteering, or simply go out of your way to smile and say hello to a stranger.  Being kind and generous does wonders for your self-confidence and spreads positivity.

If you need extra support to help build your confidence, call us now on 07872040309 to arrange your free initial consultation.

Gemma Rolstone

Gemma Rolstone

Helping good managers to become great leaders