Watch the video above to hear Amy Cuddy talk about how our body language can shape who we are.
Body language affects how others see us, but it may also change how we see ourselves. Social psychologist Amy Cuddy argues that “power posing” — standing in a posture of confidence, even when we don’t feel confident — can boost feelings of confidence, and might have an impact on our chances for success
Most people have at least one area in their life where they lack confidence. For some, it could be speaking in public, for others it could be meeting new people and developing relationships.
The steps that follow will help you identify that specific area in your life right now.
1. It’s important to identify a goal that you’d like to achieve.
2. Identify where you lack confidence in terms of achieving this goal. I assume you lack confidence in this area because if you didn’t, you’d have achieved it by now. So identify what that blockage is:
If you’re an entrepreneur, maybe you lack confidence in presenting proposals or networking.
If you’re feeling lonely but you lack confidence to join a club or volunteer.
Maybe you are in a relationship and you‘re not happy with the behavior of your partner, do you lack the confidence to talk to them about it?
3. Write at least one paragraph that describes your confidence block and your state of mind when you think about facing it.
Rate yourself on a scale of 1-10.
You must be the person you have never had the courage to be. Gradually, you will discover that you are that person, but until you can see this clearly, you must pretend and invent. Paulo Coelho
To use myself as an example, I’m lacking confidence when it comes to standing in front of an audience and teaching or speaking. =I’ll need to overcome this fear if I’m to grow and develop professionally.
I want to do it, I‘m just lacking confidence and fearful. I get anxious, sweaty, heart palpitations. I think I’ll forget everything or won’t be able to answer a question.
Think: Imagine yourself in this situation of low confidence, what comes up for you. Are you anxious, nervous, upset, etc…
Describe your state as accurately as possible.
Now that you’re aware of your confidence blocks, you can begin to smash through them.
Next: Define one action you can implement ASAP that moves you towards your goal.
If you have a fear of speaking, your activity could be to rehearse a 10 minute speech in front of the mirror. This is something I’m doing to get used to the sound of my voice. I’m also slowing down my speech and focusing more on breathing and enjoying the experience.
I’m also saying yes to speaking and teaching opportunities. The more I do it, the more confident and competent and I’ll become.
If you want to join a group or volunteer in your community then set yourself the goal of reaching out to your local volunteer or information centre and see what opportunities are out there.
Try something you enjoy or inspires you. And if it scares you then all the more reason to try it!
Write a commitment to practice this new confidence building activities every day for the next 30 days.
If you really want to commit to this, find an accountability partner and perform the activity with them so that you have a witness.
At the end of 30 days, reflect on where you are at in terms of confidence.
Rate yourself on a scale of 1-10
Repeat until you reach a level that you’re satisfied with.