How to Say “I’m Confident” Without Saying a Word
The most powerful person in the room is not the one who’s the loudest. It’s the one who knows how to stand out and command a room while remaining completely silent.
Even if you’re an introvert or are incredibly bashful, you can earn the distinction of being the most confident person around. Here’s how and why: recognize it’s the statement that comes from your body and what you don’t say that will proclaim to the world you are big, bold, and confident, especially if you are preparing to make a presentation.
The fastest way to ensure a positive impression is to have body language that tells people how they should perceive you.
If you want to be SEEN as one who is confident and competent, then you must have the LOOK of someone who is confident and competent.
Keep your head up and your shoulders back. Always. This is body image that says “I’ve got this.”
When you …
… have your head up, it sends the message you are proud of who you are and that for which you stand.
… keep your shoulders back, it signals to others that you are important and that YOU know you are important.
When you do this, it demonstrates to others that you have no intention of being anyone’s doormat.
To help with this, think of a model on a runway … in what position is her head, how does she carry herself, and where is she looking? She’s looking at no one in particular, but she’s also looking nowhere but forward. And although her actual physical mass may appear nonthreatening or possibly even fragile, her movements and the manner in which she carries herself say “I am powerful.”
Or take Rosie the Riveter, the cultural icon of World War II and a symbol for women’s independence. Look at her face — only her face and nothing else — and see how her nonverbal communication clearly demonstrates that she stands for strength and conviction.
Similarly, you want body language that says “I wish you would … but I know you won’t.”
Smile a While
Smile. Nonstop. It’s contagious.
And not only does a smile make you look more pleasant, but it gives you an air of confidence.
A smile is synonymous with friendliness, composure, and control.
S: People who smile give off a sense of STRENGTH and certainty.
M: When you smile, people want to be around you because there’s something MAGICAL about you.
I: It’s INFECTIOUS! It’s nearly impossible to pass a smiling person and not also smile yourself.
L: Those who smile demonstrate to the world that they are LOVED.
E: Smiles give you a positive ENERGY. You feel and look totally EMPOWERED and ready to take on anything.
Eye See You
Give direct face contact — not just eye contact — every time someone speaks to you.
This is the most effective way to ensure you look in total command although you are not the one speaking, and it’s the most effective means for demonstrating your unshakable focus. You’re telling your listener “I see you, and I hear you.”
Imagine how dynamic it is to have a commanding presence that communicates certainty, poise, and courage without you having to utter a word.
A strategy for giving direct face contact is to use the eyes and the mouth/nose region to imagine a triangle on a person’s face, labeling the triangle points as follows:
1 for the left eye
2 for the right eye
3 for the mouth/nose region
While listening, rotate from 1 to 2 to 3, spending a few seconds looking at each of those points. Repeat the pattern as you listen. However, when you speak, look nowhere but in the listener’s eyes.
Walk That Walk
You have just a few seconds (seven to 10 seconds according to many sources) to make an impression on a person, and how you walk into a room is a part of that judgment.
Head up, shoulders back, eyes laser-focused, and a friendly but confident smile send silent messages to everyone “listening” and watching that you have pride in yourself.
To make this easy and more automatic for you, here’s one of my absolute FAVORITE techniques: listen to a song that’s silently playing in your mind — that song that makes you feel like a million bucks, the tallest person in the room, or the *baddest one in the building — and imagine a line is drawn on the path you’re walking. Place one foot directly in front of the other as you follow that line and as you walk to the beat of that song in your head. You will not only look and feel unstoppable, but others will see and KNOW you are unstoppable!
My Final Two Cents
You do not have to put into place all of these strategies all at once. Start with the one that feels the easiest to implement, then once you have that one on autopilot, add another one until they all become how you show up in the world. Do I practice these? You bet your boots I do. Which one is the easiest for me? Probably Smile a While (Do you hear “Smile” by Scarface and Tupac in your head right now, or am I alone on this one?) and Walk That Walk. Which one gives me the greatest challenge? It’s the eye contact one. I have no idea, but it has always felt very strange to ostensibly stare at a person even when she/he is talking to me (and it’s similarly uncomfortable when a person constantly stares at me while I’m talking, especially if I have a lot to say … it feels too personal … almost as if you’re trying to look into my soul! Eek!) That’s why I came up with that strategy of looking at different points on a person’s face to make it a bit less painful.
Which one can you not wait to try? Post in the comments below!
*Think “incredibly amazing that’s far beyond meaning.”
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Get more communication strategies in my newest edition of Show Up and Show Out: 52 Communication Habits to Make You Even More Unforgettable.
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