11 signs you’re actually more assertive and confident than you appear

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We can agree that some people look confident and assertive without even trying. They could be complete dummies, but when you look at them, you wouldn’t be able to tell. Until they speak, that is. 

On the other side, there are people that, on paper, are magnetic and should walk like they own the world. For some reason, they don’t appear as confident and fierce as they could or should be. 

So, what are some signs that you are actually more assertive and confident than you appear? Let me show you. 

1) You are comfortable with silence 

Most people are very uncomfortable when they spend time with others, and silence starts creeping into the conversation. I’m sure you know the feeling. You start feeling the pressure that you need to find a topic, any topic, to keep the conversation going. 

Or maybe you don’t know how this feels? Maybe you don’t mind or even enjoy these moments of silence.  

If that’s so, you could be more fierce than you thought. 

Let’s see what other signs we have in store. 

2) You engage in positive self-talk

Even if there’s silence in the room, it doesn’t mean you aren’t talking to the smartest person there – you!

Positive self-talk is something many successful people do. It helps them reinforce their true value and also supports their self-belief. 

Apart from that, it can also give you a more optimistic outlook on life and improve your health to some degree. 

Although it’s still not clear why it does that, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do it. Do some inner pep-talk. Be your own cheerleader. It could make you more confident, after all. 

But it doesn’t stop there. 

3) You uplift and encourage others

If you love to encourage others and uplift them whenever you can, it could be a sign that you’re more confident than you let on. Some would even call you falsely modest. It’d be the people that don’t truly know you, of course. 

If you celebrate other people’s successes, provide them support, and foster a positive and empowering environment, you are someone to look up to, as well. 

Think about that for a second. 

4) You have a track record of accomplishments

You may not look confident, but you sure leave a paper trail of success and work, school, and societal achievements

This ability to consistently succeed demonstrates your competence and confidence in your abilities. You may not show it to the outside world yet, so let’s work on that.

5) You actively seek out opportunities for self-improvement

Are you open to learning new skills, attending workshops or courses, and expanding your knowledge base? This already gives you a headstart on the rest of the population that doesn’t care about enriching themselves. 

Most people complain all day about how they don’t have enough time to do this. However, you know that a week is plenty of time to do things that matter

If you don’t have time in the evenings or in the afternoon, you get up early and work on self-development and even passion projects or side hustles. 

Knowing your self-worth goes hand-in-hand with this other sign of confidence… 

6) You voice your opinions 

You actively participate in discussions and express your thoughts clearly and decisively. Does that sound like you? 

If it does, that could mean you’re a wolf in sheep’s clothes. But in a positive way. You didn’t come to eat the sheep but to be their friend and valued co-worker.  

On the other side, if you don’t like to voice your opinions, what’s holding you back? Do you fear embarrassment, or you don’t care enough, or something else completely? 

Maybe work on the underlying reasons so you, too, can become a speaker at some point and not just a listener. 

Let’s see what else we got.

7) You can accept constructive criticism

This is a big one. One that I’ve struggled with in the past and still have issues with. 

Can you accept constructive criticism and feedback without becoming defensive or taking it personally? Do you see feedback as an opportunity for growth and improvement? 

If that’s so, you’re a better person than I am. It also means you think highly of other people and what they have to say and contribute to the table. 

However, even though you know how to properly accept (warranted) critique, it doesn’t mean you don’t stand up for yourself. 

8) You stand up for yourself

Confident people know when and how to advocate for themselves and assertively communicate their needs, desires, and goals. 

They aren’t afraid to negotiate what they want, ask for a raise or promotion, or advocate for their rights and interests. 

It’s so much easier going through life with this, I would call it, skill. Especially if you also do the next thing.

9) You take ownership of mistakes

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve met someone that doesn’t take ownership of their mistakes. I mean, just look at politicians. They’re the perfect example. They blame everyone else or completely deflect. 

If you are able to take ownership of mistakes and admit you were wrong, that makes you a good person in my book. If only more people would look up to you and do the same. 

10) You establish boundaries

Saying “no” is one of the most difficult things to do for many people. They feel the slightest peer pressure, and they fold. This usually means working overtime and on weekends, staying in lousy relationships, and raising spoiled children.

Not you! You aren’t afraid to say “no” when necessary and prioritize your own needs and well-being. That’s something you learned early on, and you stuck with it. 

Setting boundaries is incredibly important in today’s world when we are expected to be ON the entire time and respond immediately to messages. Here are some tips on how to set them:

  • Identify them first
  • Communicate them assertively
  • Be consistent
  • Anticipate challenges
  • Learn to say “no”

11) You embrace discomfort 

Saying “no” to your boss doesn’t mean you don’t say “yes” to new and exciting activities and opportunities. Although you don’t necessarily show this to others, you are thrilled when new possibilities arise. 

This is a strong indication of assertiveness and confidence. Taking calculated risks is what most successful people do too, so you’re in great company. 

You also understand that this is where real growth occurs and not in safe situations. Instead of shying away from difficult circumstances, you face them head-on. 

Final thoughts

Showing our confidence to the outside world is something most of us should work on. Being confident is attractive and makes people believe you. This is important for success and for making connections with others. 

Besides, by learning what traits consistently successful people have, you, too, can become one. 

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Justin Brown

Justin Brown is an entrepreneur and thought leader in personal development and digital media, with a foundation in education from The London School of Economics and The Australian National University. As the co-founder of Ideapod, The Vessel, and a director at Brown Brothers Media, Justin has spearheaded platforms that significantly contribute to personal and collective growth. His deep insights are shared on his YouTube channel, JustinBrownVids, offering a rich blend of guidance on living a meaningful and purposeful life.

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