Upgrade Your Body Language
How to look and feel comfortable, confident and cool. Not wimpy, shy and meek.
The main difference between those who get what they want and those left wanting often comes down to one thing: confidence. People who think (and truly believe) they can do something—start a business, run a marathon, score a date with a stranger, beat out the competition for that promotion—well, they tend to do just that. "Our mind is a very powerful tool, and the impact of our thoughts and words cannot be underestimated," says life coach and author Susie Moore. "Our thoughts create our emotions. Our emotions create our actions. Our actions create our life." Here are seven things that those enviable confident men bring to their daily life that you can incorporate into yours to reap the same rewards.
Why spend time doubting your ability? Confident people expect good things to happen to them, and often, as a result of keeping their eye on the prize, they're able to work towards their goals and achieve them. Ask any elite athlete about their pre-game preparations and you'll inevitably hear something about visualization. Expectation can be a very powerful and positive force. People who are self-assured allow their language and actions to be in line with their outcome.
When you believe in yourself and trust your instincts, you won't wrestle with the debilitating effects of self-doubt. Having the courage of your convictions is what separates leaders from pretenders. If you listen to other people (no matter how well meaning), you can often err on the side of caution. Confident people listen to other people but do not let their difference of perspective take them off track.
Self-deprecation has its place, but realize that your words matter, especially when talking about yourself and your abilities. Note the difference between these two statements about a guy starting a podcast. The confident guy says, "I've always loved vintage cars, so I recently started a podcast speaking with other auto enthusiasts. Check it out and if you want to come on and talk cars, I'd love to have you be one of my guests." But the other guy says, "I'm trying to start a car podcast, but I doubt anyone's listening to it," punctuating that statement with a nervous laugh.
When faced with a difficult task or unfamiliarity, men who lack self-confidence can easily become intimidated. But the confident man will face the challenge and even if he has setbacks or failures, he will see those as paths to eventual success. "If something's not hard, it's not worth doing," says Bill Beckler, co-founder of travel startup AllTheRooms. "There have to be obstacles that have kept other people from going that route, when we confirm it's technically challenging enough to scare everyone else away, we get excited and we pursue it to completion."
You say a lot before you even speak, says Boston-based dating coach Nick Notas. And poor body language can make you appear less self-assured. He tells all of his clients to stand tall, with your shoulders back and head held high. Confident men smile easily and they maintain strong eye contact when speaking with someone.
You can't feel good about who you are and what you stand for if you don't actually feel good physically or mentally. Which is why confident men make sure to take care of themselves so they can be in peak condition. For some, that means daily meditation, others might make sure to keep up a diligent fitness regimen. It provides you with stamina, energy and a certain self-appreciation that ensures you don't look to others for approval.
There's a fine line between being confident and being an arrogant asshole. Whether in business or personal relationships, you don't need to boast or put others down to build yourself up. You can believe in yourself without bragging about your accomplishments. Confident people let their success speak for itself and don't need to vocalize it.