The Confidence Trick

By Joe Caplin

Confidence: confidence creators; self confidence; over-confidence, confidence counselling; the con-man. This week we confide in you the secrets to constructing real confidence which we’ve conveniently found through our constant research.

Confidence comes in many forms, but always leads towards the same goal: greater rates of success in your field of choice. Having confidence helps greatly with your powers of Public Speaking, your ability to be Assertive, and deal with Conflicts at Work. But how do I, as embarrassing a wreck of human anxieties as can be, achieve that elusive and attractive quality of genuine confidence?

Schools of thought vary on this subject, from the fake it til you make it crowd, which proposes that to be confident first you must appear confident, who offer 10 Ways to Appear Confident at Work; to the advice we were all given as children, that you must face your fears to banish them, making them seem as Ridiculous as they probably are. A combination of tactics may well be the best approach. Body Language plays a huge role, not only in appearing confident but also in Building real confidence over time.

The biggest barrier to developing confidence is the common Inner Critic, reminding us of our Failures and our shortcomings. No one thinks of us like this. We should instead, as Brene Brown says: “Talk to yourself like you would to someone you love”, because, according to Buddha “You yourself, as much as anyone in the entire universe deserve your love and affection.”

It is easy, however, to allow a developing self-confidence to err into Cockiness, which is in itself a lack of confidence over-compensated by the first school of faking. Steer clear of this if you can, for true love of oneself is the same as the love of another: unjudgemental, accepting and true. This is one of the greatest benefits of developing true self-confidence; as Oscar Wilde puts it:

“To love oneself is the beginning of a lifelong romance.”