3 Steps to Building More Confidence at Work

Are you lacking confidence? Then you need to work on boosting your self-esteem so you can advance at work. Studies have found that confident people tend to have better work performance, increased job satisfaction, lower stress levels, and higher earnings. Now is the time to take action so that you can move forward in your career.

” … When you aren’t taking action, when you’re not happy, when you’re avoiding speaking, working, or doing anything you know in your heart is the right thing to do, the only block is you,” said Dr. Joe Vitale in Anxious 9 to 5: How to Beat Worry, Stop Second-Guessing Yourself, and Work with Confidence.

Get out of your way by taking steps to improve your confidence. Here are three ways to boost your confidence at work.


1. Dress the part

Source: iStock

Source: iStock

If you come to work looking like you just rolled out of bed, it’s time to freshen up your look. No matter how long you’ve been working at your job it’s never OK to look sloppy. If you’re not sure what improvements you need to make, take a photo of yourself with your work clothes on. This should give you a better idea of where you need to make changes. If you’ve been sporting wrinkled clothing and ironing isn’t your thing, purchase no-wrinkle work clothes. That way, you’ll have no excuse for looking rumpled. If you’re challenged when it comes to fashion and can’t seem to achieve a polished look, hire an image consultant. Stylist Molly Gotham warns against getting too comfortable when it comes to the way you dress:

How you look, or better yet, how you appear to everyone, has an impact on your career. There’s no way around it. How you dress at work tells a great deal about you — your work ethic, ambitions, and professionalism, just to name a few….In many places of work, the dress codes are ambiguous. In this case many people start making an effort but become lazier as they become more comfortable within the company. The problem, however, is that management does not get comfortable. You are always under assessment and they are able to use anything against you when it comes to promotions and staff evaluations.

2. Practice assertiveness

Source:iStock

Source:iStock

You’ll have a difficult time being confident if you don’t know how to stand up for yourself and ask for what you want. Sitting by passively and letting transgressions slide sends the message that it’s OK for others to take advantage of you. However, also remember to approach challenging situations appropriately. There is a fine line between being assertive and being aggressive. Psychologist Randy J. Paterson says being assertive does not involve overpowering others in order to get your way:

Assertiveness recognizes that you are in charge of your own behavior and that you decide what you will and will not do. Similarly, the assertive style involves recognizing that other people are in charge of their own behavior and does not attempt to take that control from them. When we behave assertively, we are able to acknowledge our own thoughts and wishes honestly, without the expectation that others will automatically give in to us. We express respect for the feelings and opinions of others without necessarily adopting their opinions or doing what they expect or demand.

3. Polish your communication skills

Source: iStock

Source: iStock

Effective communication doesn’t stop at learning to be assertive. Learning to speak well in public, being an effective team player, and clearly communicating your thoughts in an email are just as important. Acquiring the skills you need to deliver messages in a powerful and engaging way can give you the confidence boost you need. Authors Ian Tuhovsky and Wendell Wadsworth say failing to perfect your ability to communicate can cause you to have difficulty navigating personal and professional relationships:

…Lack of communication skills is exactly what ruins most people’s lives. If you don’t know how to communicate properly, you are going to have problems both in your intimate and family relationships. You are going to be ineffective in work and business situations…Effective communication is like an engine oil which makes your life run smoothly, getting you wherever you want to be. There are very few areas in life in which you can succeed in the long run without this crucial skill.

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