Somehow I seem to lack self-confidence. And so things like interviews and finding a date are a real trial for me. Why am I like this? What can I do to increase my self-assurance?
Hi Too Timid!
Lack of self-confidence usually starts during childhood. As parents, teachers and friends whittle it away with their constant criticism. But even if you had the most wonderful upbringing, maintaining your self-confidence is a lifelong project. Because it can desert you even when you seem to have everything going for you.
Start feeling more confident by accepting yourself as you are, warts and all! Because everyone has their unique strengths and weaknesses. So take less notice of what other people say about you.
That is not to say you should ignore all feedback, like from your boss for example, but it is better to measure yourself against your internal standards. It is also normal to feel nervous sometimes, such as when you make a speech or ask someone out on a date. Get around that by always displaying ‘confident body language!’
Using confident body language greatly increases the chances that someone will like you. And you will start a sort of positive feedback that helps you improve your feelings. If you do it long enough, you will become the person your body language is projecting! It is completely true, believe me.
It goes like this: if you smile, people assume you are happy, no matter how you feel. So if you act confident, walking the walk, standing tall, hands relaxed, most of your weight on one leg, looking people in the eye, relaxed shoulders, and a lower tone to your voice, people will think you are confident, because that is how confident people behave.
It does not matter what you are feeling inside. All people see is your cool, calm exterior, and so that is the way they react to you. And as people react well to you, that improves how you feel about yourself. And before you know it, it becomes the way you are.
All the best,