Communicate with Confidence

08.06.2019 |

Episode #7 of the course How to improve your self-confidence by Patricia Haddock


Welcome to today’s lesson.

Yesterday, you gained tools for defending your ideas confidently and assertively. Today, we’re looking at strengthening your other communication skills and gaining more confidence when you are speaking.

Many factors contribute to successful communication—self-confidence is one of them. When you sound confident, people more easily believe you. You send a message that you know what you’re talking about, and you communicate authority and strength.

Be a good listener. Good communicators are good listeners. When you are feeling nervous or unsure, the tendency is to start framing what you want to say while the other person is speaking. When you do this, you drop out of the conversation and run the risk of missing something important that may change how you respond.

• Pay attention.

• Watch their body language for non-verbal clues.

• Monitor your own body language.

• Separate facts and observations from opinions and judgments.

• Set aside your own ideas and opinions, and listen with an open mind.

• Avoid evaluation or criticism while the person is speaking.

• Repeat key words and ask for clarification.

Use positive language. Listen to yourself when you speak. You will tend to use either positive or negative language. Generally, positive language communicates more confidence and is easier for people to understand. It also creates a pleasing tone. Here are two examples:

1. Negative language: “I can’t send your brochure to the printer without your approval. If I don’t have it by the end of the day tomorrow, we will miss our deadline.”

2. Positive language: “I can send your brochure to the printer as soon as I receive your approval. If I get it by the end of the day tomorrow, we will hit our deadline.”

See the difference? If you catch yourself using negative language, switch and repeat what you said in a more positive way.

Let the body speak. Most communication is nonverbal. Your body says much more than your words. One of the fastest ways to boost your confidence is to move into a more confident stance! Change your body and you change your attitude. Try it—it works! Here are tips for using confident body language.

• Make good eye contact. If looking into someone’s eyes seems intrusive or scary, just look at their face.

• Smile and mean it.

• Stand tall and straight. It immediately communicates confidence and assuredness.

• Lean slightly forward or tilt your head to show interest and attentiveness.

• Keep your shoulders down with your chin up and tucked in to avoid looking like a turtle or turkey.

• Avoid nervous gestures, such as shoving your hands in your pockets, tugging on your tie or scarf, or playing with a pen or jewelry.

• Don’t hold objects in front of you like a shield. You look scared and defensive.

Dress the part. You’ve probably heard the advice, “Fake it until you make it.” It works. Actors dress for the role they are playing and assume a demeanor that reflects the character. This helps them absorb into the role. Good actors seem to become someone else. When you dress and act as if you feel confident, you will begin to feel confident. There’s another aspect to this.

Perception is reality, and perception is initially based on appearance and demeanor. If you want to communicate confidence, dress and act the way your more confident colleagues do. Don’t mimic them, though—learn from them.

Effective communication delivers the results you want. Confident communication makes this easier to achieve. Pay attention to every interaction and conversation, and note what you do right in your Accomplishment Journal. Work on improving one area at a time until you become a naturally confident communicator.

Tomorrow, you will learn how to reframe mistakes so they can’t derail your confidence.

See you tomorrow.



Recommended book

Communicate with Confidence: How to Say It Right the First Time and Every Time by Dianne Booher


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