Fake It ‘Til You Make It: How Confidence Can Make You Successful

no1Confidence is a common characteristic among the most successful people. We’re drawn to those who act confidently and exude self-assurance. We trust them; we want to like them.

It can be very obvious to those around you if you have low self-esteem and are consistently second-guessing yourself. In fact, it can make people uncomfortable with your abilities and unsure that you can do what you say you can.

Even if you’re not completely confident in a given situation (and there will always be situations where you feel a little less than secure), there is value in working to present a picture that says otherwise. While always being genuine and honest is vital, there is some benefit to pretending to be just a little more confident that you actually are. As long as you are not misrepresenting yourself or your skills and experience, you can benefit immensely from presenting a picture of someone who has no doubts in their abilities. Here’s how you can benefit:

Clients and colleagues will trust you.

No one wants to entrust important responsibilities to someone who doesn’t seem like they can handle it. Presenting yourself as completely confident and capable makes it easier for clients and colleagues to trust you and believe that you really do have what it takes.

You will attract like-minded people.

Being confident makes you more likely to find other confident and successful people. This will not only open up new opportunities, but you will also find that your own goals and plans will start to become bigger and you’ll stretch to do more and achieve more.

You will take more calculated risks.

When you’re confident, you find more opportunities coming your way, and you will be more willing to take risks. You’ll learn how to gauge new opportunities and create plans for taking risks that point to increased success and fulfillment.

You will start to believe it.

The beauty about faking it is that eventually you won’t need to anymore. You will train yourself to think positively and develop a can-do attitude that will slowly begin to become an established part of your personality. That’s when you will truly see the benefit of confidence, with your business and in your personal life and overall attitude.

But wait; there are potential problems with being overly confident. One danger is the risk of taking it too far and being seen as arrogant. The last thing you want is to come off unapproachable and standoffish, so be sure to keep it in check.

You also want to avoid Superman syndrome, where you begin to be unrealistic about what you’re capable of. This can cause you to be less than honest in your portrayal of your abilities, and possibly make you take on more than you can handle. It’s perfectly OK to aim high and believe you can accomplish anything you set your mind to, but you need to keep reality in check to avoid any potential catastrophes.

Has confidence helped make you successful? How?

Image credit: Robert Aichinger

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  • http://edgedirector.com/ plumsauce

    Nothing evenly dishonest about it. It is just not showing your fear of failure. The old saying was fake it till you make it.

  • http://edgedirector.com/ plumsauce

    Sorry, that should have been “even remotely”. No edit button around here :(

  • jardin

    Interesting article, thanks!

  • alexweber

    I like that!

  • Alex

    Great article!

  • http://www.qiboo.com artemis

    The same goes for interviews too!

  • Veronica

    Great advice! All of it is so true. So many freelancers inherit the fear of cold-calling (like myself) and have to work hard to overcome that.