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Too scared to speak up? How to be more confident

https://www.theguardian.com/science/2017/oct/26/too-scared-to-speak-up-how-to-be-more-confident

theguardian.com

Too scared to speak up? How to be more confident
Some people exude self-assurance, while others dread putting themselves forward. But is lack of confidence societal or genetic, and what tricks can we use to overcome it?

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Confidence

Confidence

Confidence is hardwired into us from birth. The environment of where we grew up in and how we were raised affects our confidence.

Academic self-confidence is 50% nature and 50% nurture. It is important that we have a strong grasp of who we are and what we can be because the perception of ourselves greatly contributes to our self-esteem.

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The difference in confidence between men and women

Men and women have differences in biological makeups and it also involves their difference in confidence. Women have a biological tendency to seek acceptance and avoid conflict, while men tend to take more risks under pressure. This shows that women might appear to lack inner confidence.

However, despite being perceived as such, studies show that if both given a scientific quiz, men and women provide the exact same results whether they underestimate themselves or not.

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The correlation between social classes and self-confidence

The correlation between social classes and self-confidence

Confidence has much to do with space - with how much room you feel able and allowed to take up.

A child that grows up with an affluent family has a different perception of himself than of the child who grows up in a one bedroom home with a single parent that could hardly provide sustenance for the two of them.

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How to exude confidence

Building one's confidence and self-esteem does not happen overnight. Like any other skill, it takes time and consistent practice.

Here are some ways to help build confidence:

  1. Be honest with yourself and know what you need to improve on
  2. Do not worry about what other people think of you - focus on yourself and the opportunities you have
  3. Practice courage daily.

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With stress, the mind and the body are intrinsically linked. You can view stress as something that is wreaking havoc on your body (and it can) or as something that is giving you the strength and energy to overcome adversity.

Exposure to Stress

Regular exposure to stress in small quantities can prepare us to handle a big stressful event in our lives. Prepare yourself for stress by self-education about the stressful event, by doing some physically stressful activities like completing a marathon, or something you dread, like giving a speech.

Repeated exposure to mildly stressful conditions can alter your body’s biological response to stress, making you manage stress in a better way.

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Putting your knowledge and skills in perspective

Putting your knowledge and skills in perspective

When you're feeling notably uncertain about a something, take the time perform an audit, in the objective terms possible.

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Playing the part

Competency requires practice. It doesn't get easier overnight.

Playing the part doesn't mean to just fake it, even if there are some benefits to that, too. Instead, by diving in and doing the work even if you don’t feel 100% prepared, your skillset will start to improve as you get more practice.

Clarifying questions in uncertain situations

When you’re really unsure, asking questions may be last thing you'd want to do, because it could feel like turning on a spotlight when all you want to do is go unnoticed. But masking uncertainty tends to amplify it.

In many situations, questions are an important tool: the more comfortable you get asking for clarification or help, the smoother the path is down the road.

Stand tall

A tall, correct posture is the outer sign of confidence.

A study showed that a tall, expansive posture helps you feel and consequently act more powerful than more drawn-in stances.

Listen to bass-heavy tunes

Researchers found that listening to bass-heavy tunes may have the ability to make you feel more confident.

Recall a time you were powerful

Remember the small moments where you were confident. It can make you feel (and as a result, act) more confident.