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What Does It Mean to Be Confident?

Something that comes up inevitably in my coaching sessions is the lack of confidence someone feels about taking a specific action step. Often, this lack of confidence becomes the limitation for movement, progress, and change.

So, what does it really mean to be confident?

People often want confidence BEFORE they take a step. On the contrary, confidence often comes as a result of taking the step.

People who are confident share these important characteristics:


Confident people are capable. They know they are good enough, competent, and can handle life's situations.

Admitting you are capable also means knowing that if you cannot handle a situation completely on your own, you can find out where to get the necessary help, information, or skill.

Knowing you are your greatest resource protects you from stress. Believing you are capable means that whatever the task, you will handle it. By believing in yourself, you can face life with complete assurance.


Confident people take responsibility and ownership of their opinions, emotions, feelings, words, and choices. You are not passing the buck and you are not comparing yourself to others. You are you! You may do things differently and with that choice, you see life through the lens of growth and learning.


Confident people believe in their value and worth. They feel they are worth the time, money and energy required to nurture and support themselves in their fulfillment and growth.

This could be things like taking a class to learn something new, taking time out to exercise, having quiet time to re-energize and rejuvenate, or pampering themselves with a massage or manicure.


Confident people engage in the present moment when they are with others. They are not concerned about how they look, sound, feel or smell.

Constantly thinking about what you feel or look like takes you out of the moment.

Practice not thinking about the past or the future. Concentrate on what's in front of you -- there's probably something exciting about it.


Confident people are true to themselves. They honor who they really are and will do things that honor their true selves, despite what others may say or think. When people are truly authentic they feel more comfortable, and that produces confidence.


People with confidence have a physical presence. It shows in their posture, body language, eye contact, and dress.

If you look like a confident, capable person, people will treat you accordingly, and eventually you will start to feel it too.


Confident people don’t give up. They take risks, know they will make mistakes, and that sometimes they will fail.

Everyone makes mistakes and fails. If you don’t, you’re not trying hard enough. Don't think of these as mistakes and failures as negatives, but rather as learning opportunities.


Confident people are not arrogant. Arrogance is detrimental to interpersonal relationships. For people who are confident, it’s not about getting the praise, attention, or being better than others.

Confident people lift others up. They give others credit for their work, encourage progress, and offer compliments and sincere praise.


Confident people take action. We all want to do or try certain things but fear we may fail. These feelings are normal. The difference is that a confident person will act on their ambitions and desires and will not let the fear of failure stop them.

The more we take action, the more our confidence grows. We try something and are successful, and the next time around it feels easier to do it again.

So where does your confidence level stand?


Sit down with pen and paper, and review each of these characteristics. Ask yourself:

• Which of these areas am I doing well?

• What areas are not going well?

• What is ONE step I can take to begin improving just ONE of these areas?

Confidence happens over time. Remember: This isn’t a race! Take time to slowly make changes in your life to improve your confidence.

And as always, if you need help creating actionable steps to grow your confidence as well as the accountability to carry those steps out, I’d love to help! Schedule a call today.


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