What defines a confident woman? Is it the clothes she wears? The zeros in her bank account? The people she surrounds herself with? All of those, but probably not in the way you think.
1) If you’re secure in who you are.
I used to think that confidence only had one look and that was loud and proud, but I’ve come to learn that confidence has no volume, and it certainly looks different for everyone.
If you’re secure in who you are, when even hell or high water doesn’t shake the foundation of your very being, then that’s confidence. It takes guts to be comfortable in your own skin, especially as a woman.
It’s important for me to make this the first point because women constantly live a life of being made to feel too much or never enough. Confidence looks good on you, sis, no matter what you look like.
If you show up as your genuine self, then that’s confidence. That’s power. The world will not tire in its attempts to push you down, but you’re made of tougher things than that.
So, yes, it’s definitely the clothes you wear; and by that I mean, whatever you want to wear.
2) If you’re accountable for yourself.
More than showing up, being accountable for yourself is also a power move. More than being in control of the situation so that nothing goes wrong, it’s also being able to accept responsibility if things do go wrong.
Because things WILL eventually go wrong, that is the nature of life, but confidence is knowing you got this. You are accountable for your actions and reactions.
Being confident is not micromanaging a situation, it’s knowing that you are capable of handling complications should they arise.
3) If you remain kind to yourself even on bad days.
Let’s face it, there will be days that will not be kind to us, but it takes strength to be soft. It takes grit to keep being kind to ourselves.
I’m not one for toxic positivity, but I am all for not allowing ourselves to drown in negative talk.
Even on days when you can’t get out of bed and the world feels like it’s against you, remind yourself that you have you in your corner. And honestly? You’re a powerful ally to have, you know?
Be on your side. Always.
4) If you uplift others.
I recently watched actress, social media personality, vegan icon, and human sunshine Tabitha Brown on The Terrell Show and she said something very profound: “It ain’t my blessing, it’s yours.” (I recommend watching the episode here as there are so many nuggets of wisdom in it.)
She said this when explaining why she helps everyone who calls her up for advice regarding business and money when she herself was refused that help in the past. Your blessing is yours.
There’s no need for selfishness because what’s meant for you can only be yours. Tabitha Brown gave such an air of gentle strength, generosity, and such sureness about her identity at this moment.
And like Tabitha, don’t just be the brightest thing in a room full of people, be the light that guides.
5) If you have boundaries and are comfortable saying No.
There’s always going to be a degree of intimidation when it comes to dealing with a confident woman. I think, subconsciously, most people are aware of the odds it took to get to that point.
There were biases to destroy, societal expectations to shed, and the entire patriarchy to fight against. The point is: IT’S A LOT to get to the other end of that a winner.
So don’t give anybody permission to disrespect you. (That includes you. Treat yourself kindly, okay?)
Learn to set healthy boundaries and learn to say No. Refuse to be dragged into anything that doesn’t align with you. And I’m looking at you, people-pleasers. Let 2023 be the year you set boundaries.
There’s a quote that floated around the internet for a while that resonated with a lot of people, it might resonate with you, too: “Stop breaking yourself down into bite-sized pieces. Stay whole and let them choke.”
6) If you are unafraid of being wrong and being told No.
There are two Nos that I specifically want to talk about: 1.) Rejection and 2.) other people’s boundaries.
- Rejection is–and I really want to cuss right now–difficult. It’s going to feel like a failure, but it’s not, you’re just not meant for that.
Confidence is knowing how to use that rejection as a means of clarity. Confidence is trying again. Confidence is knowing you might not get the outcome you want but trying anyway.
- Other people’s boundaries: Don’t dish it out if you can’t take it are good words to live by. Another adage that’s old as time? Respect begets respect.
If you wish for your boundaries to be respected, then respect the boundaries set by other people as well. You can’t be right and have your way all the time.
7) If you are courageous.
Confidence is not complacency, neither is it recklessness.
But if you persist despite the odds against you, despite fear, then that’s courage.
And if you already are sure of yourself like in point #1, then you’re already courageous. As I said, it takes a whole lot of guts to be yourself.
And if you keep yourself accountable, keep being kind to yourself on bad days, when you stand your ground, and all the points that come before and after this, all those take courage.
8) If you reject drama.
Drama is a form of distraction.
It distracts you from the now. And being directly involved in drama is sucking energy from you that you could’ve put elsewhere.
(Although I’m guilty of also indulging in other people’s online drama, not gonna lie. This one’s on me, haha!)
9) If you accept your flaws.
Miss me with that I’m perfect attitude because that’s arrogance and not confidence. If you don’t accept flaws, you don’t allow yourself to be flawed and human, you don’t allow yourself a chance to learn. To be better.
Celebrate your flaws. You are not who you are despite your flaws but also because of them.
10) If you aren’t in competition with anyone.
This one’s related to #1 and #4 in a way that what’s yours is yours.
You’re in a league of your own, momma; and other women aren’t your competition, they’re your community. They’re your tribe.
I’m going to use a cliché here: you dance to the beat of your own drum. That’s confidence.
11) If you prioritize yourself.
Prioritizing yourself could mean a lot of different things for different people. This could be a conscious decision to do self-care, putting your mental health above anything. Keeping yourself in your best physical condition or not working overtime or outside of your set working hours.
Prioritizing yourself could also mean you give yourself the best financial advantage because you know that money is power.
But prioritizing yourself could also mean owning your hours and spending them in any way you want even if that means not doing anything when you don’t want to. When you prioritize yourself, you prioritize your happiness and well-being.
These #11 and #12 are closely related. Your priorities would be different from other people depending on what you’re working towards and #12 what you think you deserve.
12) If you know what you deserve.
If you know what you deserve, you will not put yourself at a disadvantage. You will not tolerate disrespect and you will know to demand more if you know you are being slighted.
Women are so often made to feel small and are made to feel undeserving but to that I say: TAKE UP SPACE.
You deserve the space you occupy and much more. The world is so vast and it is waiting and ready for you.
13) If you put in the work.
Confidence is a continuous process of loving, learning, unlearning, and accepting who we are. There are so many preconceived notions we need to shed, a lot of conditioning we need to outgrow.
It doesn’t happen overnight and it certainly doesn’t stop with a snap. It takes work and a lot of it.
14) If you remain grounded despite success.
Confidence is not the same as arrogance as I’ve mentioned. Being confident is not just about being on top of the food chain, it’s making your rung of the ladder the best place for you at that moment.
It’s being aware that there’s more work to be done to constantly improve and be better should you wish for it.
Keep your feet on the ground no matter how high life takes you. Celebrate your wins but never forget how you got there. (And everyone who helped you.)
15) If you believe in yourself.
Belief takes you far. When you have an unshakeable truth about who you are, what you can achieve, and what you’re capable of, it will propel you. Belief is fuel for action.
It feels corny for me to end this list with this but like #1, I also feel like I need to make this statement the last one here.
Oh, but one last thing…
Just in case you’re someone who’s read this and not one resonated with you, then let me share this quote by social psychologist Amy Cuddy, “Fake it ’til you become it.”
(I highly recommend you listen to her Ted Talk “Your body language may shape who you are” here because that one quote is but a drop in that very meaningful talk.)
Fake it not just until you make it, but until you become it. You are so, so capable of being any and all of these things I said.
You’re already powerful. Now, you just gotta show the world that.
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