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I'm Kelly - the founder of She Is Fierce! and your host on our blog featuring stories and wisdom from fierce women all over the world! 

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6 Ways To Build Confidence, Without Being Arrogant

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Self-confident people are typically looked up to and considered to be inspiring individuals by others, especially in the business world, where many of our leaders are typically ultra confident individuals. So of course for the rest of us, such confidence is a very desirable trait. Furthermore, since most of us are in client facing roles for the majority of our day/week, believing in ourselves and our abilities is critical, we can’t expect others to to have confidence in us if we don’t feel it within ourselves – least of all paying clients…

Avoiding crossing that fine line into the realms of arrogance is equally critical, no-one likes an arrogant consultant. Your colleagues who have to spend a great deal of time with you will tire of you quickly, and while your clients want your opinion and expertise, they certainly don’t want a know-it-all with an arrogant attitude.

Real and authentic confidence is built gradually and comes with experience and time, it’s not an overnight process. You can fake it till you make it, but that genuine deep down confidence you aspire to will take time. So, here are 6 things you can incorporate into your daily routine and interactions with others to build confidence (but avoid arrogance!):

1 – Think & Speak Positivity

Don’t verbalize anything about yourself that you don’t want to become a reality. We’re not suggesting that positive thinking alone can make you a confident person, but it’s one part of the process, and a big step in the right direction. Highly confident people will tell you that they think a lot of positive and optimistic things about themselves and their lives. So don’t hesitate to remind yourself of what you have achieved, what your strengths are and what you are capable of.

Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement. Nothing can be done without hope and confidence. – Helen Keller

2 – Drop The Pointless Comparisons

Comparing yourself to others and their achievements or failures is one of the worst things you can do for your confidence. What you see of others is never the full story, it’s not the complete picture, what you see is only what that person chooses to project – a surface level truth of their reality. Re-focus instead on yourself, know what your strengths and objectives are and spend your energy working on them.

When you are content to be simply yourself and don’t compare or compete, everybody will respect you. – Lao Tzu

3 – Adjust Your Body Language

By body language we mean your posture, your smile, the amount of eye contact you make and also your speech. The way your physically present yourself can have a very real impact on what people think of you. Body language expert Susan Constantine for example states:

“It’s reasonable to assume that a sloucher is disinterested or lacks confidence, that someone leaning back is lazy or cocky, and that someone sticking out toward you is aggressive and may make others uncomfortable. Eye contact helps establish a connection, people have many reasons for not making eye contact; perhaps they’re bored, lying, nervous, or not confident”

Making a few small and simple adjustments can make the world of difference and in the world of consulting, anything you can do to build a better relationship with your clients is worth a try. Try smiling a little more, perhaps pushing your shoulders back a little and making sure you look directly at people when they speak to you rather than around the room. All of these things will not only give others the impression that you are a confident person but will also make you actually feel more confident inside as well.

4 – Remember: A Loud Voice Does Not Equal Confidence

Generally speaking we tend to view those who are the loudest and most forthcoming as confident and successful, however this isn’t always the case. Think about all the best leaders you know, either personally or because of their ‘celebrity’ status, do they ALL blow their own horns the loudest? Sure, some of them do, but some of them are also the super humble and sometimes self-effacing people.

It isn’t about who talks the most or the loudest. It is about the demeanor and attitude he brings. – Mark Cuban

Similarly, too much noise and self promotion can take you across the line into the category of arrogance. So tread carefully. 

5 – Surround Yourself With Positive And Confident People

Evaluate your inner circle of people, those you spend most time – and ask yourself whether those you spend most time with are positive and confident people. This is hard, especially if you spend a lot of time with close family and friends, but it really is crucial to consider distancing yourself from those individuals who are negative, bring you down, and do nothing to help boost your confidence.

You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with. – Jim Rohn

If a complete break from someone is too much to handle, consider a temporary break, or perhaps just reducing the amount of time you spend with them, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at just how much difference it makes.

6 – Be Fully Committed

Commit yourself to building your self confidence, and we mean really commit. Be mindful everyday of what you can do to build your success, write actionable items into your to-do list, put a reminder on your calendar, tell someone close to you that you are working on this, whatever you need to do to be reminded and stay accountable for your own success.

With confidence, you have won before you have started. –  Marcus Garvey

Good luck! Don’t procrastinate, get started today and see how quickly you experience a boost in confidence. It will likely be an uncomfortable process at times, and if it isn’t you probably aren’t doing enough!

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