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How to Become More Confident

7 Steps That Will Make You Super Self-Assured

You’re not the only person who feels insecure, of course.

Everyone does sometimes.

But it’s a worthy goal to want to feel more confident—to want to feel comfortable in your own skin.

Second-guessing what you just said and wishing you’d said something else, and wanting to make yourself disappear gets old and exhausting.

Having anxiety about whether you’re acceptable or lovable sucks up your vitality and takes up the energy you could have been using to do something way more fun and productive.

But it’s hard to know how to get out of the trap of feeling like you’re not good enough, that you’re missing some crucial information that everyone else seems to have, or that you’re just too broken or hopeless to ever feel like you can totally relax.

Becoming more confident will definitely make you more attractive.

Who doesn’t want that?

Fortunately, no matter how messed up you feel or your childhood was, you can become self-possessed and secure.

You can start making yourself confident with these 7 practical steps.

1. Ask yourself how you feel

This sounds so simple, but I find that many women are not well-trained in this, even though emotional brilliance is one our feminine gifts.

We’re geniuses at knowing how we feel and expressing it, but if no one modeled it for you, you may not be tapping into your genius.

That means you’re walking around without the indispensable information you need to honor yourself, which is what confident people do.

Ask yourself how you feel, and then answer with a feeling word, like afraid, sad, hurt, angry, grateful, happy.

It could also be a physical feeling, like tired or hungry or relaxed.

Once you inform yourself about how you’re feeling, it will be a whole lot easier to take care of yourself, which will make you feel more secure.

2. Ask yourself what you want

Most women are not trained in this at all, which is tragic because this is the seat of feminine power.

Confident people honor themselves, and knowing what you want and being able to say it directly is a critical part of confidence.

It doesn’t mean you’ll always get what you want, but it’s definitely a great start.

Everyone wants things. Not knowing what they are, or pretending you don’t or ignoring what you want is equivalent to living in low-self-esteem land.

To move to the other side of the tracks, just think about what you want.

Make a list. Update it periodically as your desires change.

3. Spend time on frivolous fun everyday

Confidence comes when you’re willing to put other people off–including kids and husbands–to take care of yourself first.

Having frivolous fun is part of caring for yourself, especially for a woman.

Denying yourself fun may seem virtuous, but it’s actually eating away at your confidence by forcing you to cope with life without regular refueling and relaxing.

Start by carving out time for sitting on a porch with your book and lemonade, or shopping, or taking yourself to a café or for a bike ride.

As long as the activity brings you joy, it doesn’t have to do anybody else any good.

This is what confident people do. They enjoy themselves.

Feeling good also contributes to you feeling more relaxed and self-assured.

4. Consider Your Limits

Whenever someone wants me to do something that is going to cause me to be overwhelmed, exhausted, stressed out or resentful, I politely decline.

Here are the magic words I use to decline such invites: “I can’t.”

That’s it. I don’t explain that I will resent the person if I don’t say no. I just use those two magical words.

They keep me out of loads of trouble. Like the time my BFF wanted to talk after I’d talked all day for work.

“I can’t,” was all I said.

That didn’t make her love me any less, even though she really wanted to talk to me.

It made her look forward to talking to me more.

I was looking forward to talking too, just as soon as I felt up to it.

5. Take in Compliments as “The Truth”

When someone says you look beautiful, or have an amazing voice, or are so funny or so smart, consider believing them without reservation.

Why not?

If they think it, and they are saying it to you, how does it serve you to dismiss, contradict or undermine that positive point of view?

To become more confident, simply smile and say, “Thank you.”

You could even pause to take it in–even if it feels like a lie, and even if the conversation comes to an awkward halt when you do.

What’s the worst that could happen?

You might feel more beautiful, talented or bright.

Those are all confidence-inducing feelings.

6. Fill Your Own Tank

I used to ignore the first five steps above and get anxious, depleted and cranky a lot.

It felt awful, and I was desperate to feel better.

In those moments, I wanted my husband to do something because I wanted someone else to fix me, and he happened to be nearby.

Unfortunately, that’s not actually possible. I’m the only one who can fix me, first of all.

And once I’ve overdrawn myself like that, there’s no fixing me for a while, anyway.

But that didn’t stop me from getting angry and disappointed with him for not fixing me.

Learning to fill my own happiness tank before it got low freed me of that feeling of desperation and neediness.

When I stopped feeling needy and desperate, it improved my relationship greatly, allowing for more closeness and connection, which made me feel more loved.

Feeling loved has been great for giving me confidence.

7. Pretend You Are Confident

Some of the things I’m suggesting probably feel highly unnatural.

Maybe some of them don’t even make sense to you.

That’s okay. Find your spirit of adventure and experiment with them anyway.

In other words, you might feel anxious or afraid while you’re becoming more confident.

That’s normal. Being confident doesn’t mean you’re never anxious or nervous.

It just means that you trust that you’re worthy of the air time, the break, the good cut of beef, the compliment, the gift and the help that comes around.

You may not feel that way yet. That’s okay. You can still pretend that you do. Because here’s a little secret about confidence:

Pretending to be confident is how you become confident.

As you keep playing the part of a confident woman, something magical happens: you become more dignified, calm and attractive.

You’ll still be yourself, but you’ll be the best version of you: the one who knows her worth and treats herself well.

By Laura Doyle

Hi! I'm Laura.

New York Times Bestselling Author

I was the perfect wife--until I actually got married. When I tried to tell my husband how to be more romantic, more ambitious, and tidier, he avoided me. I dragged him to marriage counseling and nearly divorced him. I then started talking to women who had what I wanted in their marriages and that’s when I got my miracle. The man who wooed me returned.

I wrote a few books about what I learned and accidentally started a worldwide movement of women who practice The Six Intimacy Skills™ that lead to having amazing, vibrant relationships. The thing I’m most proud of is my playful, passionate relationship with my hilarious husband John–who has been dressing himself since before I was born.

14 replies on “How to Become More Confident”

I am this woman who does not have confidence in myself…I don’t even understand why I don’t. The 7 steps you have presented to me sounds a little over-bearing due mostly to my fear that I can’t be the woman who I know I am somewhere deep, down inside of me. I just can’t seem to grasp what is “real” and what is not real. Sounds like a trust issue within myself. I just don’t know what to do.

Terri, I know how painful it is to feel lacking in confidence. It’s been well worth the effort for me to take the actions outlined here. If I can do it, you can do it too!

Terri, I just wanted to tell you that I really understand what you are saying. I feel that kind of disconnected form of ‘real or not real’ feeling too. It seems to happen when I try to express my feelings to someone that just doesn’t get it! Stand firm in your own intuition. Great words by Laura. Great 7 steps! Thanks Laura.

Oddly, as a single woman, working as a professor, and living in sunny California, I was too confident for my own good – so much so, that upon marriage, and motherhood, I couldn’t function as the humble, respectful, serving wife and mother I needed to be to have a healthy home; so then, I flipped it all and became entirely too giving of myself, and lost my playful, confident, self-nurturing characteristics. Yikes! I became super needy, whiny, resentful, disrespectful, and flat out, bitter. How miserable was I?

I did plenty of reading books on marriage, counseling, begging and pleading my husband to see the errors of his ways, and it got even more miserable.

Then, after it was the worst it had ever been, and my husband filed for divorce, I shut down. I blamed myself, and cried a lot – so much so, my husband decided to come back, probably out of guilt.

I poured myself into my relationship with God, and kept my faith in Him.

Then, after nearly three years, all the biblical passages and Christian books on relationships I had studied and stored in my heart, became a bit irrelevant when I learned of your 6 intimacy skills; let’s face it, they aren’t out of the bible, really.

Yet, I thought I’d give them a try. Granted, our marriage was much improved from my closeness to God, the Father, but some things about my husband were still major head scratchers.

Your advice is so paramount, and dead on target. I thoroughly enjoy reading your blog, because as I’ve stated to you in another comment, about three weeks ago, you really know men. Your insights are true, and oh… so helpful!

I’ve thought that confidence is a selfish trait; it promotes too much attention, on me. However, it’s really a maintenance thing – keeping ‘everyone’ in the family fulfilled, which I believe, does strongly sit on the shoulders of the wife/mother (it’s in the bible).

So, as I’m looking out for the well-being of my husband and son, I must not forget about myself. If I’m careful to keep my husband’s favorite foods in the house, a healthy dinner prepared most nights, a son getting a good home education, with manners and strong morals being taught, and I look to make sure we’re all where we need to be, when we should be, then I must also see that we are all emotionally satisfied and internally at peace, and as full of joy as possible.

I have a recliner, with a massaging set of balls that rotate and roll up and down the back, and into the neck. It’s where I’m sitting now. It’s pretty phenomenal! Frequently, it’s where I go for self-care, when I’m tuned into me, and recognize my need to locate that joy, and inner peace.

Yes, Laura! We must remain confident! We must have moments of asking ourselves what we want, then supplying ourselves with it, and feeling perfectly at peace with the indulgent side of doing so. Denying ourselves, carries damaging results. As I said, it’s maintenance of the entire family, that falls on us; God says so!

I know that in your books you mention God, but not necessarily His word (the bible). Yet, I find that most of your words line up with scripture, and God’s will for wives and mothers; I wonder how intentional, or, accidental this is. 🙂

Well, thanks for your gift and calling on being such a wise expert on men, and how us gals should be around them. I know you’ve helped me a great deal.

Alva, Thanks for sharing your experience with the 6 Intimacy Skills. Congratulations on saving your marriage and making it great again! I admire your commitment.

What if your husband is a master manipulator and doesn’t want you dominating him in anyway.. .I had to quit my job because of the pressure he told me if I don’t pay for my furniture they will repossess it… this really hurt me because it was showing me that he does not have my back unwilling to pay the bills that I’m paying while I’m out of work… we have never had our money together… he spends large amounts of money all the time without talking to me about it but he got upset because I borrowed some money to get some furniture after many hints hoping that he would get some for me…..

Veeta, So sorry to hear about the money battles. Sounds painful. We had a similar struggle at my house, but not anymore. I’d love to see you get your hands on The Six Intimacy Skills and experiment with them at your house. Many women report they feel like they have a new husband in a couple of weeks even though they didn’t think it would work with their husband. You can find them in my book, The Empowered Wife, and you can read a free chapter here:

I really appreciate this article, at times we wives/mothers get so caught up on being everything to everyone we forget how to be ourselves . Then, we are cranky, overwhelmed and miserable. I know I have to work on taking time for me to replenish my spirit so that I really can be my best self to me and my family and friends ! Thanks!

I m really depressed of my husbands attitude with me , he has no time for me , he is drug user and goes to sluts but don’t like to come close to me, not bother about me n my basic needs even , please help how can I get his attention n all I deserve as a wife.

I’m 51 years old and have severe Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. My life and marriage are falling to pieces. My mind never gives me peace and my husband can do nothing right. How do I do all these things when my mind and body just wont allow me?
PS I have the Empowered Wife book

Is amazing how much I needed this, is exactly how I feel towards my relationship now. Thanks and I am really grateful. I hope a lot of women see this as well

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