There is a fine line between confidence and cockiness, and unfortunately people tend to be chastised no matter what side of the spectrum they’re on. Here are a few tips on how to accept, own and even increase your confidence in yourself. After all, if you aren’t confident about your strengths, how do you expect others to know them?
- Don’t try to mask “humble bragging” behind self-deprecation.
I borrowed this idea from an article on LinkedIn written by Dr. Travis Bradberry, but he does such a good job illustrating the point! (Also it’s less work for me, win win!)
The examples he gives help contextualize the idea, and you can probably pinpoint someone in your life who already does this:
– A guy who makes fun of himself for having such a “boring, strict diet” when in reality he just wants everyone to know how #fitfam he is.
– The girl who makes fun of herself for being a “nerd,” when really she wants everyone to know how smart and intellectual she is. (NO, I HAVE NEVER DONE THIS…)
Humble bragging is annoying because not only are you being braggy, but you’re also PRETENDING like you’re not being braggy. At least own that ‘ish. Or, better yet, just let people discover all your wonderful talents by themselves!
So, how can decreasing self-deprecation increase confidence? Humility doesn’t mean you have to lie if you’re good at something. It’s okay to acknowledge your strengths, and its even okay to talk about them! (insert ghost face emoji). If you self-deprecate, even if it’s a bold face lie, you are still denying yourself the opportunity to take ownership of something you’re proud of.
- Which leads me to #2, Learn to accept compliments!
This is still something I struggle with. I was taught that if you accepted a compliment, you were being braggy. This is so not true! Accepting a compliment means that you are grateful that someone has recognized a positive trait in you and is being complimentary, it does not mean that you necessarily endorse this trait. Also, it’s kind of rude to deny someone’s compliment, see transcript below.
Judy: “Oh my gosh Jane, your hair looks so beautiful today!”
Jane: “HA! Yeah… SURE IT DOES JUDY. I did this in like five seconds.”
Judy: (Insert confused face emoji)
Instead, what if the convo went like this:
Judy: “Oh my gosh Jane, you look so beautiful with your hair like that!”
Jane: “Awe, thank you Judy!
Judy: (Insert happy face emoji)
How does #2 increase confidence? This one is a bit more straightforward. If we deny someone’s compliment to the person who gave it, we are also denying it to ourselves. Who cares what you thought of your hair before you left the house (After all, we are all our own worst critic.)? If Judy thinks it looks amazing, thank Judy and move on with your life. You will then internalize a positive message about yourself instead of a negative one.