By Eric Santos
Confidence is the key to becoming successful at pretty much anything in life. This includes approaching women, giving a killer presentation, and starting a business–just to name a few. Reason being that women want to date guys who are sure of themselves, people only want to listen to presenters who sound like they know what they’re talking about, and investors only want to invest in companies run by competent leaders.
Confidence is not necessarily something we are born with, but definitely something everyone can obtain. I had very little of it when I was younger, but through various stressful experiences and interactions, I was able to gain greater faith in myself. Many times I am asked, “How are you so confident?” Truth be told, although I’m a very self-assured guy, I exude even more confidence than I really have. Here is how you can come off as ridiculously confident, even if you aren’t…yet.
Guys who are insecure often worry about “over-dressing,” while confident guys never fear such a thing. These men understand that dressing sharp is a way to project power, and so are not concerned if people think they’re trying too hard or not. You should always strive to be one of the best dressed men in the room. Fitted clothes reflect maturity and style. But be sure to learn the difference between dressing sharp and dressing flashy.
The ability to speak clearly and assertively is a sign of confidence. If you are doing it correctly, then you shouldn’t have to repeat yourself often, but also make sure you don’t come off as overly “loud.” Be concise. Rambling only makes you sound unsure of the subject of discussion. While you should do your best to expand your vocabulary, you should also be selective about which words you use.
Unapologetic Body Language
Many times your body language can say more about your confidence level than any form of verbal communication. Always make eye contact; not looking someone in the eye shows insecurity. Walk confidently and maintain good posture. Give firm handshakes and tight hugs. Lastly and most importantly, smile. The way you literally carry yourself can exponentially increase how much confidence you project.
Don’t Come Off As Inexperienced
Never let your inexperience show, even when you are. The first time you get in the end zone, act like you’ve been there before. If you’re dating a girl who’s totally out of your league, act like you’ve dated plenty of women like her. When a client asks if you can deliver on something you don’t exactly know how to do, say you can deliver and learn how. There is nothing wrong with a little “faking it till you make it.” Just work on learning how so you really can deliver on your promises.
Arrogant guys brag excessively. Confident guys do it just enough, and they do it humbly. If you have an accolade that you want to mention in a conversation, ask a leading question that will introduce the topic. You want to talk about your awesome job? Ask the person of interest what they do for a living so that they can ask you the question in return. I like to say that I’m not bragging, I’m simply answering questions.
Listen More Than You Talk
Talking too much is a sign of arrogance and/or insecurity. Listening more than you speak projects confidence for two reasons 1.) You’re confident with your word choices and don’t need to say too much 2.) You’re confident enough to let the other person speak without having to immediately jump in. Be careful to not be too quiet; if you don’t speak enough you may come off as hesitant or scared. Say enough to make your point and nothing more.
Close The Deal
Whether you’re approaching a woman at a bar or you’re making a sales pitch, always try to close the deal. Or else, what’s the point? I’ve seen too many of my friends successfully approach a woman but get too nervous to ask them for their number. I’ve received terrible sales pitches where they didn’t even try to make a sale. If you approach a woman, ask her out to dinner. If you’re giving a sales pitch, ask them how much they want to order.
Failure Is Ok, But Only After You Have Tried
Whenever you go to close the deal, you should act as if failure isn’t an option. Of course we all fear it, but we sure don’t have to show it. When I’m out and I ask a woman to dance, I act as if I’m already sure they will say “yes” (and of course, if they say “no”, I exit gracefully). And if you’re in a job interview, act like there is no candidate better for the job. Failure will be always be a possibility, however it’s much more likely to happen if you let it be an option.
This article originally appeared on AskMen. For more like this from AskMen, try: