Just how confident are you around other people?
Are you a mouse in public? Or do you proudly strut your stuff?
When I started coaching over 5 years ago, I didn’t know exactly what kind of coaching I wanted to do. I tried a bit of career coaching, a bit of coaching on communication skills, and so on.
Soon, I discovered what I deem to be my calling as a coach: social confidence coaching.
Helping others develop their confidence in social settings is something that resonates with me because I know what it’s like both to have and to lack social confidence, and also because I realise how big a difference having social confidence can make in your life.
When you’re confident and at ease in social settings, you can have an incredible amount of fun interacting with others, you can build meaningful relationships, you can get noticed and get ahead. You too will then be able to negotiate anything.
Social confidence can effectively turn a large part of your life around.
Today, I want to give you my top tips on how to overcome shyness and develop social confidence, in the form of a simple guide. There are four of them.
1. Work Specifically On Developing Your Social Confidence
Social confidence is one particular type of confidence. There are also other types. For example, professional confidence – the confidence that you are competent in your job.
Most people make the mistake of trying to improve all of these as a whole. This is a mistake because it’s too much for your brain to handle at once.
The best way to go about it is to work on developing each type of confidence separately.
So, when you work on developing your confidence related to social settings, don’t work on anything else. You’ll make much faster progress.
2. Start from the Inside Out
A lot of people try to boost their confidence around others by gaining and displaying certain external symbols they believe will impress others: dressing with glamour, driving a sports car or flaunting an expensive watch.
While this can help you feel more confident around others, it’s a very superficial form of confidence that can vanish in an instant.
The best way to go about developing your social confidence is to start from within.
You begin by identifying and correcting your limiting beliefs. You build your self-image from within. And as you do so, your confidence gets stronger and more stable
Only after you’ve basically taken care of these internal lairs of social confidence, you should look to add to them some of the external ones as well.
3. Discover Your Strengths
Consciously or not, most people who lack social confidence have this belief that they don’t have anything valuable to offer, that there is no reason for others to like them.
This belief has nothing to do with reality. If anything, it’s an indicator that these people don’t know themselves that well and they’re not in touch with their own qualities.
This is why discovering your strengths is crucial.
So, start looking at yourself more and seek to unveil the qualities you possess. Trust me: you have plenty of them – you’re probably just unaware of many of them.
As you explore your own personality, these qualities will surface.
Whenever I coach a person who lacks social confidence, we discover nasty beliefs about the consequences of behaving in certain ways in social settings.
For example, they believe that if they ask other people various questions, they’ll find this intrusive and refuse to reply. Or that if they share themselves, others will judge them and reject them.
What I encourage them to do is to behave in these exact ways they believe will attract negative reactions, just as a test, and notice how others truly react!
Almost without exception, they discover that others react much better than they predicted.
This gradually dissolves their limiting beliefs and builds their confidence.
You can apply the same concept and you’ll get the same results. The key is to not yield to your negative beliefs and assume they are valid. Instead, experiment in social settings and see what really happens. You’ll often be blown away by reality.
The Way Forward
Apply these four tips effectively and you’ll see your social confidence steadily go up. You’ll feel more comfortable in social settings, have more nerve, be more social and find it easier to be you.
Once you can do this, creating for yourself a rich and rewarding social life happens effortlessly.
No one will ever see you as a “mouse” any more! And you can be proud to strut your stuff 🙂
This is a guest post from Eduard Ezeanu