There are some major benefits to having confidence, and there are proven methods to boost it.
There's a saying that "confidence breeds success." But does it?
Science actually backs this up to a reasonable extent. Confidence can play a big role in how much success you experience in the workplace, in relationships, and even in your health. So let's take a look at how to get there.
1. Give yourself a quick confidence boost by striking a "power pose."
Did you know that something as simple as striking a powerful, confident pose can trick your brain into actually feeling more confident? Well, it can. Really.
Try this: Next time you're feeling nervous about something — like a job interview, for example — try taking a couple minutes right before and adopting this pose: Stand straight up, push your shoulders back and chest out, and place your hands on your hips.
Studies have shown that this pose can lead to a short-term increase in confidence and reduction in stress. How does this work?
"Our nonverbals govern how we think and feel about ourselves. Our bodies change our minds," said Harvard Business School social psychologist Amy Cuddy in a 2012 TED Global talk.
2. Convince yourself you have the ability to improve.
Now, this sounds like one of those "easier said than done" type suggestions, but it's actually not. Think about the things in your life you can't change and those you can. You can't change your eye color or your height, for example, but you can change your physical strength through training.
Ask yourself if your goal is something you have the power to improve upon (even if improving might be really difficult). Is your goal to become a better public speaker? That's something you can improve upon. A better interviewer? That's a skill that can be honed. Have more upper body strength? With training, that's possible, too.
What you'll find is that there are very few things in life truly set in stone. We all have our own limitations, but as long as we can remind ourselves that we're not stuck, we have incentive to stay motivated.
3. Fail. Get up. Try again. Repeat.
You're going to fail, and that's a given. What matters much more than whether or not you fail is how you react to that setback. Do you get up? Do you regroup, come up with a new strategy, and try again? Or do you just throw in the towel?
If we can learn to fail, we can learn to succeed.