Education, experience, and hard work are all important aspects to being successful in the corporate world. A solid resume of tangible achievements and applicable skills might land you the job of your dreams, but growing your career requires a level of confidence in yourself and your abilities. While some people may be naturally self-confident, it takes a lot of practice for most of us to build self-esteem. Finding ways to boost your confidence every day will set you up to succeed.
1. Act the Part
The impression that others make of you can have a huge impact on your career. No matter the dress code, a professional outfit shows that you take your job seriously and want to be seen as a promotion-worthy professional. When you dress for success, you can still be comfortable. If you’re constantly adjusting your clothes or limping around the office in shoes that hurt, you won’t feel very confident and others will notice.
Smile, be approachable, and ask people about themselves. Confident people tend to smile more, which increases happiness for them and those around them. Being approachable and friendly will make you feel more connected to those you work with, which ultimately boosts confidence.
Walk with confidence. Good posture and a pep and your step can really boost your mood and has a ripple effect on those around you. Walking with confidence really does make you feel more confident, and will make others feel good, too! Try these healthy habits to boost your mood and focus.
2. Prepare and Practice
Being prepared is a great way to be more confident. If you know what you need to do and how much time you have to do it, you’ll have a clear path to complete your tasks. Keep detailed and up-to-date to do lists so you never miss an important deadline. Being organized will make you more productive and might just get you promoted.
If you have a big meeting or presentation (or even a small one) coming up, make sure you do your research so you can confidently answer any questions. As you complete tasks, review how they went and track how you can improve next time. Focus on your strengths and successes to refine your skills. Notice and congratulate yourself on small wins, even if no one else does. Every little success will give you a little confidence boost, which will grow over time.
Notice and congratulate yourself on small wins. Every little success will give you a little confidence boost, which will grow over time.
3. Keep Learning
Pin point where you are, what you know well and what you can improve on. Start by researching your industry and area of expertise. Read up on useful skills that you use everyday plus soft skills, like communication, time management, and leadership. A better understanding of your field will allow you to confidently speak about what you do and help you understand how you can do better.
Build new skills by taking online classes, signing up for webinars, attending industry events, or watching TED Talks. Look at the skills your boss has in order to be in that position and focus on growing your knowledge and experience in that area. Expanding your skills to include those of your boss or boss’s boss will open the door to bigger career opportunities..
4. Set Clear Expectations
Make sure that your boss and co-workers understand what to expect of you. You don’t always have to go above and beyond to be confident, but you do have to be reliable and communicate clearly. Set expectations for what you plan to work on and how long you expect it to take. Holding yourself accountable to these goals boosts your confidence and builds your credibility with others.
As long as you’re realistic from the start, you can meet (or exceed) expectations. Once you and your team members are all on the same page, you can work confidently and trumpet your successes with the (on-time) completion of each project.
5. Ask Questions
If you’re not sure how to complete a task or need clarification in order to do what’s expected of you, just ask! Asking questions is actually a sign of confidence because it shows you’re willing to speak up and that you want to do a good job.
Ask for feedback from your boss or co-workers so you know how you’re doing. Any positive feedback will surely boost your confidence, knowing you’re doing well at important aspects of your job. But don’t take any constructive criticism personally. There is always room for improvement, so take all feedback as a catalyst for growth.