Have you ever been in a meeting with a person who sounds like they have a deep understanding of the topic being discussed? If you have, then you know that person can easily command the attention of everyone in the room.
They exude confidence and make it seem so natural in the process.
If you don’t yet have that confidence, chances are you’ve scoured the Internet and found hacks upon hacks that can help you project confidence.
The problem? You’re still faking it.
It’s time to forget all the tricks you’ve learned – the power poses, positive pep talks and envisioning success in your head.
The key to being confident – truly confident – is actually building that confidence.
Sure, the other tricks help. But there’s no substitution for being properly prepared to tackle a project or challenge.
Here are five ways to become the most prepared person at work – and therefore, the most confident.
1. Get Experience
It’s hard to talk about traveling down a road you’ve never traveled. Getting experience equips you with firsthand knowledge of a role, tool or process.
There are alternative ways of growing your experience if your job doesn’t present such opportunities, though.
For example, if there are special projects or committees in your organization, you can volunteer to be a part of them to grow the breadth of your experiences. You might even volunteer to work with nonprofit organizations in your community to build skills or expose yourself to different lines of work.
2. Be Proactive
Think about what your boss, team or organization needs to address. By anticipating what’s ahead and being a problem solver, you’re positioning yourself as a valuable and key player.
You can give yourself a leg up by allowing yourself a chance to brainstorm creative ideas and solutions and to develop unique perspectives.
3. Perform Dry Runs of Presentations
Practicing a speech or presentation is a great way to become familiar with your content so you can deliver it with ease.
Be sure to practice in front of a family member, friend or coworker and ask them for feedback and questions. It’ll help you conquer your nerves. And will help you anticipate some questions and reactions you’ll get from your audience.
You’ll be more prepared to respond and will also be able to demonstrate greater confidence during your presentation.
4. Use Your Body Language to Project Confidence
Being prepared is not limited to completing a set of tasks that will assist you in getting even more work done.
There are simple steps you can take to prepare yourself in other ways, such as knowing and practicing your body language.
By being familiar with several ways to appear confident, you’ll be better positioned to display a positive image.
Being attentive to details such as your eye contact, posture and speech play a key role in being prepared. When your body language sends the message that you are collected and in control, people around you will perceive you as confident.
5. Have a Plan to Manage Pressure
People in business environments can learn from athletes who are successful in high-pressure situations. Professional athletes develop strategies that help them stay mentally strong and maintain their confidence when the stakes are high.
Being prepared with your own plan, whether it be a routine before important meetings or a self-talk before a job interview, will help you to be successful.
Confidence Is Yours for the Taking
If you’re looking for confidence, it’s time to stop searching the Internet for “get confident quick” hacks that can only take you so far.
Instead, build your confidence by seeking opportunities to grow your knowledge and experience. When you’re the most prepared person in the room, you’ll also be the most confident.