I strongly believe that confidence in part has to do with our interactions with others. Our confidence (or lack thereof) is displayed in how we exchange information. Intentional or unintentional, our actions and words do affect the people around us. There are 4 behavioral traits of a confident communicator that stands out to me most.
- Our Actions + Our Words: Know anyone that vocally expresses how confident they are ALL… THE… TIME!? Are you that someone?? There’s absolutely nothing wrong with saying it loud and proud! BUT, as we all know (no matter how loud you say it), actions speak louder than words. If you claim to be X, Y, and Z, or if you feel a certain way about a situation or person, your actions should most definitely live up to those words? For example, some people believe that their ability to “speak their mind” is confident… And yes, that can be a trait of a confident person. However, if every time you “speak your mind” you end up in huge dilemma with someone, then you’d probably agree that there is room some for improvement. Just because you say the first thing that pops into your head does not make you a confident person. Not to mention, sometimes silence is preferred/necessary in order to avoid unnecessary drama. Vocally confident individuals know how and when to express themselves without hurting or demeaning others. They can get their point across and know that they’ve been respectfully understood. Same thing with our actions. If your hating on someone behind their back, but smiling in their face the moment you see them, you couldn’t possibly be as confident as you think you are. If you dislike the person, don’t associate yourself with them! If you’re going to go around saying “I’m 100% confident in myself,” you have to take into account what you are actually saying and put it in relation to what you are actually doing. What about yourself are you most confident about? I bet you can show it more than you can express it. 🙂
- Being Considerate: Piggy backing off of the first trait, we’ve all heard the phrases, “think before you speak,” and “… talk the talk, … walk the walk.” Confident individuals think about how their words and actions leave an impact on people… How actions and words can, do, and will affect people. Some people will say or do the cruelest things and claim that they were “just being honest,” or “keeping it 100.” The problem with this is that not everyone takes in information in the same way. There is an effective and appropriate way to communicate with everyone. The key is to not look at everyone as the same. For instance, you probably wouldn’t explain a horrible day to a child in the same way that you would to an adult. You’d probably have a different tone, use different vocabulary, etc.
- Being Accountable: Our actions and words leave imprints everywhere we go and on everyone we interact with. With that being said, it is extremely important that we show accountability in all that we say and do. This goes for both our personal and professional lives. I know that being accountable is easier said then done for some circumstances, but for the most part, there really isn’t anything or anyone keeping us from this responsibility, other than ourselves. We have to be accountable for our own successes, failures, and so on. It’s in the choices that we make, the actions that we take, and our overall behavior and attitude. Success or failure is completely up to you. So be honest. We all make mistakes sometimes. There’s no need to put the blame on anyone else, don’t downplay it, and know that trying to cover it up will only make things worse. Just own it! On the contrary, if you’ve done something great, don’t devalue it… let it be known how awesome and proud you are of your achievements. It always feels good to be recognized and receive credit for a job well done.
- Standing Up For Yourself + Beliefs: As cliche as it sounds, you’ve got to stand up for yourself. The ability to stop someone in their tracks before they can step all over you… now that is true confidence. I’ve been put in these types of situations on several occasions. In the workplace and in my personal space. I absolutely hate it when people think that they have some sort of power or upper hand over others. Maybe they have a higher position, or maybe their older and believe that age holds the power. Well, hate to burst that bubble… my mom taught me that you have to give respect to get it. So if you have a higher role or if you are “the boss,” that doesn’t give you the right to treat people however you choose. Employers hire employees because they need assistance in maintaining a successful business. So it would make sense that they treat their team as people should always be treated, with respect. As for age, well… age ain’t nothing but a number, so the “respect your elders” card only goes so far for me. Hahah! I mean, don’t get me wrong, I most certainly respect my elders, but when someone is approaching you wrong, you should confident enough to express yourself effectively. No matter their age or professional status.
“Confidence is silent. Insecurities are loud.”