Confidence is one of the things that most of us wish we had more of. No matter how successful we are, or how sure we are of ourselves, there are times when we all feel anxious. Maybe we’ve been asked to give a speech to 500 people at an industry trade show. Or perhaps our boss has assigned us an unfamiliar task—something we’ve never done before. There are all sorts of situations where our confidence may flag, and need an immediate boost.
Fortunately, there are a variety of things we can do to boost our confidence—whether we need a major dose, or just a little bit. Here are 7 ways you can gain the confidence you need to take on any task or deal with any situation—quickly and easily.
1. Be positive
Being confident starts with having a positive outlook about your future—and yourself. Be an optimist—someone who believes that things will generally work out for the best—instead of the person who always looks at the negative side of things and expects the worst.
2. Don’t broadcast your biggest personal goals
We all have big goals for ourselves when it comes to work and career. We work hard to impress our boss and to earn a promotion or raise. We do a great job on a project so that we’ll be given even greater responsibility on the next one. We have to be careful, however, that we don’t tell everyone around us what are biggest personal goals are. When we do, we put pressure on ourselves to perform, and that may actually create more anxiety and less confidence.
3. Confide in others
While you shouldn’t broadcast your biggest personal goals to everyone you meet, you should be open to the people who are already your greatest supporters. If you’re worried about a project that’s going off the rails, then don’t hesitate to disclose this to your spouse or significant other, and to close work associates. They will provide you with a vital sounding board that you can use to test out ideas—and build your confidence in the process.
4. Start small
Instead of trying to take on an impossible project or task all at once, divide it into smaller pieces, and then complete those smaller pieces one by one. As you succeed in achieving these smaller goals, not only will you eventually achieve your impossible project or task, but you’ll gain confidence that will propel you forward in the rest of your work and career.
5. Stand up straight
Research shows that posture has a huge effect on your confidence—or lack of it. When you stand up straight and act confident, people will naturally assume that you are confident. They will respect you more and listen to what you have to say—which will boost your confidence even further.
6. Be prepared
I personally know that the most-powerful way for me to gain confidence when I’m getting ready to take on a new project or meet a prospective client for the first time is to be as prepared as I possibly can. When I’m getting ready to meet a prospective client, I visit their LinkedIn page to get a better feel for who they are and what companies they have worked for, I visit their current company website to fully understand what their business does and how they do it, and I read any news articles I can find about them. By the time we get on the phone, I am confident knowing that I am fully prepared for our conversation.
7. Act now
Confidence is not something you can wait for and hope it arrives. Confidence comes from taking positive steps in the right direction, and it comes from taking action now—not later. The sooner you start doing things that will build your confidence, the sooner you’ll be more confident. Try it and you’ll see.