“Health is the greatest possession. Contentment is the greatest treasure. Confidence is the greatest friend.” ― Lao Tzu
Have you ever wondered what highly confident people do differently?
How do they manage to have a busy life, face fears, confront situations and still maintain a natural core of confidence?
It is not that highly confident people are born confident or have genes that make them different but they engage in habits and structures that enhance and sustain their sense of confidence.
What are some of those habits or structures? Let us take a closer look…
1. Understand and Believe In Themselves No Matter What Others Tell Them and Have an Internal Compass of Approval
“Nobody can make you feel inferior without your consent.”- Eleanor Roosevelt
Confident people have a good sense of understanding of who they are and what makes them tick and do not deviate very much from that set point of confidence.
Highly confident people value themselves and believe in their own natural abilities and skills. Regardless of what the world is telling them, they strive to maintain an internal compass of approval and appreciation.
Self-belief also gives them the ability to self-correct and accept failure and take it in their stride. It is the difference between going on and giving up too soon.
Confident people also realize that events will pass and maintain the mindset Of “I Am Good Enough.” As such, they feel compelled to become and express more of themselves and do not experience much cognitive dissonance between who they are and what they want to be.
People with an internal sense of well-being and confidence feel empowered in their lives and approach life and situations with that sense of empowerment.
Confident people respect and trust themselves and their skills. They do not under or oversell themselves.
Develop an internal compass of approval and appreciation.
Believe and trust in yourself and your innate abilities and skills.
2. Take Responsibility For Their Realm Of Influence
“You must take personal responsibility. You cannot change the circumstances, the seasons, or the wind, but you can change yourself. That is something you have charge of.” – Jim Rohn
Highly confident people take 100% responsibility for their life, actions and their future. They do not seem to be in a rush to delegate this highly important aspect of their lives to others and outer circumstances.
Taking resolute responsibility for their life gives them wings to fly and something to look forward to and move towards. It gives a sense of internal and external power and control.
Highly confident people also know that they need to act and stay within their realm of influence. They understand the aspects of life that they have no control over and are more willing to let them go.
Confident people make it a habit to act with integrity and keep promises to themselves and to others. Keeping their word with themselves and with others and tying up loose ends and completing incompletions gives them a great surge of confidence.
Take complete responsibility for all of your life right here and right now!
Understand and act within your realm of influence and power and let go of the rest.
If you take responsibility for yourself you will develop a hunger to accomplish your dreams.-Les Brown
3. Are Not Quick To Make Assumptions And Choose Wisely And Decide Quickly
“It is tempting, if the only tool you have is a hammer, to treat everything as if it were a nail.” ― Abraham Maslow
Highly confident people understand that opinions and judgments are quite often based on unsubstantiated assumptions. They listen to different opinions but do not fall prey to debilitating assumptions very quickly because they test everything out for themselves.
Confidence also comes from keeping choices open and not tunnel visioning them into one or two solid opinions and ideas. When you have a bit of choice and wiggle room to make better decisions, you will feel a natural surge of ease and confidence.
Confident people are also highly decisive once they weigh all their options carefully. They do not suffer from the burden of overthinking or excessive analysis, or what is commonly called analysis paralysis.
Bust through any assumptions that you may be making and test them out for yourself.
Keep your choices open and make decisions rapidly.
4. Realize That Excessive Blame And Criticism Do Not Accomplish Much
“To avoid criticism say nothing, do nothing, be nothing.” ― Aristotle
Highly confident people do not spend their precious energy and time blaming and criticizing others. They may be quick to point out what is wrong or how to improve but usually do not dwell in that for very long and do not frame it as a criticism.
Self-Confidence makes it possible to make the key distinction between an event and a person. Confident people understand that blaming someone does nothing and accomplishes little. Confident people come up with solutions and allow for more chances to succeed.
They are not easily unhooked from their path by little setbacks and do not play the blame game. They implicitly understand that blame and criticism shuts others off and activates their flight or fight response.
Unhook yourself from the unnecessary drama of excessive blame and criticism.
Provide solutions and do not be caught up in the blame game.
5. Nourish Their Body, Mind and Spirit and take care of their External Environment
“The human body is not a thing or a substance, given, but a continuous creation.”― Norman O. Brown
Confident people have a daily or weekly practice that includes activities that nourish the spirit, mind and body. They understand that taking care of themselves is a necessary prerequisite for optimal confidence and performance.
Highly confident people dress sharply and exercise regularly.
Even if it means going for a little walk and having great eating habits, they prioritize them over other distractions and are highly invested in nourishing their bodies.
They understand the importance of sleep and rest and schedule in ample down time between their busy schedules.
They understand the relationship between energy, fitness and confidence. Even though they understand that confidence springs from inside, they do not allow the external to be slovenly.
They keep their surroundings clean and functional and this allows them to feel good as they participate in their environments.
They do not make erroneous assumptions such as dressing well and taking care of oneself is selfish and shallow. They understand that if they dress sharp and feel high energy in their bodies, they will feel elevated confidence and that will help them serve others better.
They understand the power of positive affirmations and are vigorous advocates of personal development and creating a better present and future.
“Every day, in every way, I’m getting better and better” – Émile Coué
Set up a regular practice that deeply nourishes your body, mind and spirit.
Make sure that you are active and get regular exercise. Of course, if you have a health condition, get the ok from your medical provider before proceeding to change your activity level.
Dress sharp, keep your surroundings clean, clutter free and functional.
6. Have The Ability To Say No and Do Not Hesitate To Speak up
“Words are the voice of the heart.” ― Confucius
Confident people have no problem to speak up and express their opinions because they value themselves very deeply. If others do not want to hear them, they find a tribe or audience that is willing to listen and engage with them.
Confident people also do not seem to have a problem saying no to things or people. They usually believe in under-committing and over-delivering.
Develop the ability to speak up when it matters. Your opinion is important!
Realize that overcommitting and being excessively polite that compromises your well-being and sanity may be a way to mask a lack of confidence.
7. Attempt To Find Meaning And Purpose In Their Work And Connect Them With Their Skills and Strengths
“Your purpose in life is to find your purpose and give your whole heart and soul to it”― Gautama Buddha
Confident people make it their mission to find their “dharma” or purpose in life and seek contentment and happiness in their work and their life. They strive endlessly to infuse their lives with meaningful activities and work that makes them smile.
Confidence comes from developing strengths and skills and employing them in daily work to provide value to others. This is an unbeatable combination that the highly confident deeply understand.
They stand squarely in the confluence of their deepest passions, their best skills and strengths and find creative ways to give meaning and value to others. They actively delegate everything else to others!
The confidence formula: Your Passions + Your skills and strengths + Value to others = Meaning, Purpose and Happiness
8. Focus And Amplify Their Strengths
“In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.” ― Albert Camus
One major quality of confident people is the lack of excessive focus on weaknesses. Confident people understand that everyone has weaknesses but also realize that focusing on them is unproductive.
They understand their strengths and strive to develop and focus on them. They let go of the stories associated with their weaknesses that bring them down.
High levels of confidence can be achieved if you choose to focus on your strengths and not on your weaknesses.
9. Choose To Be Positive And Associate With Positive, Uplifting People
“Keep your face always toward the sunshine – and shadows will fall behind you.”― Walt Whitman
This may have been overused but positivity is still a great confidence booster. Confident people understand that negativity is inherently powerful and sticky and do not allow it to rule their lives.
Confident people also understand that positivity and confidence are infectious and very contagious. Hence they make it an effort to associate with people who uplift them and bring out the best in them. It is said that every person is the sum of his or her five closest relationships.
Confident people have a great energy about them and make being positive, and having uplifting energy and uplifting others a way of life.
Are you being positive or is negativity ruling your life? Replace negative thoughts and actions with positive, uplifting ones.
Do you associate with people who uplift you or those that bring you down?
Do you choose to uplift others?
10. Make Forward Movement And Action A Priority
“A thousand words leave not the same deep impression as does a single deed.”― Henrik Ibsen
This is a big one! Confidence comes from taking repeated action and making forward movement a priority.
Highly confident people are very action oriented and realize that any forward motion is better than doing nothing.
They understand that engagement and practice are the keys to feeling elevated levels of confidence in any field.
They are willing to test things out and take action in the face of fear and failure.
“Do your work, then step back. The only path to serenity.”― Lao Tzu
Are you a big action taker?
A good reminder to stick on your computer or on your fridge: IATBARN or I Am Taking Big Action Right Now!
Practice, practice, practice…even if it means taking small steps!
11. Use Body Language And Posture That Puts Them In An Empowering Mood
“Body language is a very powerful tool. We had body language before we had speech, and apparently, 80% of what you understand in a conversation is read through the body, not the words.” – Deborah Bull
Some body language tips that highly confident people use:
Stand Up Straight and tall
Use open power poses and not closed poses
Look in the eyes of others
Shake hands warmly and surely
Are you using confident body language?
12. Are Secure In Their Opinions And Viewpoints While Letting Others Hold Theirs
“I do not want my house to be walled in on all sides and my windows to be stuffed. I want the culture of all lands to be blown about my house as freely as possible. But I refuse to be blown off my feet by any.”- Mahatma Gandhi
Confidence comes from being secure in your deepest convictions and opinions but also having the willingness and the flexibility to listen to opposing viewpoints.
Confident people are not bogged down by disapproval and do not view opposing opinions as a threat to their ego and self.
Feel, think and act securely in your opinions while giving others the breathing space to express theirs.
Now over to you! Which of these habits resonated most deeply with you? What are some habits or structures that you use to feel or maintain your confidence?
Photo Credit: Star jump by stuart anthony via Flickr Creative Commons