11 behaviors that give people the impression you’re not very confident

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Ever felt like everyone else seems super confident and you’re just blending into the background?

You’re not alone, we all feel that way sometimes.

But did you know that confidence isn’t only about how you feel, but also how others see you?

Sometimes, we do things that make others think we’re not confident, even if we don’t mean to.

In this article, we’ll talk about 11 things you might be doing that could make you seem less confident.

Don’t worry though – knowing what these things are is the first step to changing them.

1. You’re Always Apologizing

Ever heard the phrase “Sorry seems to be the hardest word”?

Well, for some of us, it’s more like the easiest!

Saying sorry all the time, even when it’s not needed, can make you come across as less confident.

It might seem like you’re always feeling guilty or like you’re doing something wrong.

For example, if you apologize every time you share your opinion or ask a question, it can give the impression that you’re not sure of yourself.

Remember, it’s okay to apologize when you’ve made a mistake.

But if you’ve done nothing wrong, there’s no need to say sorry.

Standing your ground and knowing when to apologize (and when not to) is a key sign of confidence.

2. You Avoid Eye Contact

Our eyes can say a lot about us, and when we avoid eye contact, it often means we’re feeling unsure or nervous.

When you’re talking to someone and you constantly look away or look down, it might seem like you’re not confident in what you’re saying.

Eye contact is important because it shows that you’re engaged in the conversation and that you’re listening to the other person.

It also shows that you’re comfortable with who you are and what you’re saying.

So the next time you’re in a conversation, try to maintain good eye contact.

This doesn’t mean staring without blinking, but rather keeping your gaze steady while still looking away naturally every now and then.

3. You Speak Too Fast

Talking a mile a minute can give the impression that you’re nervous or unsure of yourself.

It’s like your words are trying to keep up with your racing thoughts, and it can make it hard for people to follow what you’re saying.

I remember when I first started public speaking, I’d get so nervous that my words would just tumble out in a rush.

I’d finish a 10-minute speech in 5 minutes, leaving my audience more confused than enlightened!

Over time, I learned that it’s okay to slow down, take a breath, and speak at a natural pace.

Not only did it make me seem more confident, but it also made my words more impactful. 

4. You’re Always Second Guessing Yourself

Confident people trust their instincts and decisions. If you’re always second guessing yourself, it can give the impression that you’re not very confident.

This doesn’t mean that confident people never have doubts, but they don’t let these doubts control their actions or decisions.

Second-guessing yourself can actually make you perform worse in tasks. When we doubt our abilities, we tend to make more mistakes and are less creative.

So the next time you catch yourself second-guessing, take a step back and remind yourself of your abilities and past successes.

Trust your instincts and make a decision – even if it turns out to be wrong, it’s all part of the learning process!

5. You’re a People Pleaser

Being a people pleaser isn’t necessarily a bad thing – it shows that you’re considerate and care about others’ feelings.

However, if you’re constantly bending over backwards to make others happy at the expense of your own needs and desires, it can come across as a lack of confidence.

It’s almost like you’re saying your needs don’t matter as much, or you’re scared of expressing what you really want.

This can lead to feeling unfulfilled and even resentful in the long run.

It’s important to remember that your feelings and needs are just as valid as anyone else’s.

Standing up for yourself doesn’t mean being selfish or rude – it simply means respecting and valuing yourself. It’s okay to say no sometimes, and it’s okay to put yourself first.

This doesn’t mean you care any less about others, it just means you’re also caring for yourself – and that’s a sign of true confidence.

6. You Don’t Accept Compliments Gracefully

This is something I’ve personally struggled with.

Whenever someone would compliment me, I’d brush it off or downplay it. Instead of a simple “thank you”, I’d say something like “Oh, it’s nothing” or “I’m not that good”.

It took me a while to realize that not accepting compliments gracefully was actually a sign of low confidence.

It was like I was telling people that their positive opinion of me was wrong or that I didn’t deserve the praise.

Over time, I’ve learned to accept compliments graciously. Now, when someone compliments me, I just smile and say “thank you”.

It might seem like a small thing, but it’s made a big difference in how confident I feel and how others perceive me.

So remember, the next time someone gives you a compliment, don’t brush it off – accept it with grace and gratitude.

7. You’re Constantly Comparing Yourself to Others

We all fall into the comparison trap sometimes. We see someone with a better job, a nicer car, a more “perfect” family, and we start to feel like we don’t measure up.

But here’s the raw truth: comparing ourselves to others is a one-way ticket to feeling inadequate and less confident.

No matter how successful or happy someone else may seem, remember that everyone has their own struggles and insecurities. They’re just not always visible.

Instead of comparing yourself to others, focus on your own progress and growth.

Celebrate your small wins and learn from your setbacks.

Your journey is unique to you and that’s what makes it special.

So stop looking over your shoulder and start appreciating the path in front of you!

8. You Don’t Take Risks

Confident people aren’t afraid to take risks.

They understand that failure is a part of life and that it’s better to try and fail than not to try at all.

On the other hand, if you’re always playing it safe and avoiding any kind of risk, it can make you seem less confident.

So, don’t shy away from taking risks. Whether it’s making a bold career move, trying a new hobby, or simply speaking up in a meeting – don’t let fear of failure hold you back.

Remember, it’s through taking risks that we grow and learn the most. 

9. You’re Always on the Defensive

This is a behavior I used to exhibit a lot, especially when I was younger.

Whenever someone would disagree with me or offer constructive criticism, I’d automatically get defensive.

I’d try to justify my actions or argue back, instead of taking a moment to consider their point of view.

What I didn’t realize back then was that being defensive was actually a sign of low confidence.

It was like I was so insecure about my ideas or actions that any form of criticism felt like a personal attack.

Over time, I’ve learned to be more open to feedback.

Now, when someone disagrees with me, I try to understand their perspective instead of instinctively defending mine.

If they have a valid point, I acknowledge it. If not, I respectfully explain my viewpoint.

Confident people aren’t afraid of criticism or disagreement – they see it as an opportunity for growth and learning. 

10. You Don’t Take Care of Yourself

This might be a tough pill to swallow, but it’s the honest truth: if you’re not taking care of yourself, it can come across as a lack of confidence.

Whether it’s neglecting your physical health, ignoring your mental wellbeing, or just not taking time for self-care, these all send a message that you don’t value yourself enough.

And let’s be real here: you can’t pour from an empty cup.

If you’re always putting others first and neglecting your own needs, it’s going to take a toll on your confidence.

So please, make self-care a priority. Eat well, exercise regularly, take breaks when you need them. Your body and mind will thank you, and so will your confidence levels. 

11. You Don’t Speak Up

There’s something incredibly liberating about speaking your mind and standing up for what you believe in. But if you’re always silent, always holding back, it can make you seem less confident.

We’ve all been in situations where we’ve bitten our tongue and later wished we’d spoken up. And the regret that comes with it can be a major blow to our self-confidence.

So when you feel like speaking up – do it! Yes, it might be scary and yes, not everyone might agree with you.

But remember – your voice matters. Your opinions are valid. And speaking up is one surefire way to show yourself (and the world) that you’re confident in who you are and what you believe in!


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Lachlan Brown

I’m Lachlan Brown, the founder, and editor of Hack Spirit. I love writing practical articles that help others live a mindful and better life. I have a graduate degree in Psychology and I’ve spent the last 15 years reading and studying all I can about human psychology and practical ways to hack our mindsets. Check out my latest book on the Hidden Secrets of Buddhism and How it Saved My Life. If you want to get in touch with me, hit me up on Facebook or Twitter.

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