Putting yourself “out there” is hard for many people. For the last two months, you’ve been learning how to overcome your fears and blog more openly and effectively when you’re online. Today, we are going to conclude the series with some tips for how to ooze confidence when online.
The Putting Yourself Out There series consists of
Part 1: How to Overcome Your Shyness (September 2014’s article)
Part 2: How to Be Seen As An Authority (October 2014’s article)
Part 3: How to Ooze Confidence (today’s article)
How You Can Ooze Confidence Online
Being authoritative is a bit different from having the ability to ooze confidence. Today we are going to look at 11 things you can do to help you in your quest to be more confident when you’re blogging.
#1. Be Professional Even When Being Personal
To exude authority in your niche, you must be professional in all of your online interactions.
In order to present yourself in a professional manner, pretend that others are looking at every little thing you do when you’re online. (They are!)
When you are on your personal Facebook page, interacting with your close friends and family members, make sure that you act appropriately in your interactions, and don’t post pictures that might embarrass you. You are under scrutiny all of the time, and the slightest deviance from professionalism when you’re being personal is frowned upon by others.
Sad, but true.
#2. Don’t Express Your Insecurities
A case can be made for this suggestion as being a bit controversial, because people like to see others’ weaknesses and vulnerabilities. However, if you want to be seen as a professional, you should refrain from expressing any of your self-doubts, even if you doubt yourself and have a low self-esteem.
Your lack of confidence in yourself will be conveyed to others, and you will not be seen as an expert.
#3. Avoid using phrases such as “I think” or “I believe”
This is somewhat self-explanatory. If you write something, you obviously have thought it, so the “thinking” is implied. The same applies to “believing” something.
You might appear wishy-washy to others, too, if you frequently use these phrases.
Here’s proof — take a look at the following sentences, spoken by two different people:
Person 1: “I think it’s important to maintain a professional profile online.”
Person 2: “It is important to maintain a professional profile online.”
Which person are you more likely to deem as an authority? Person 2, right? Person 2 oozes confidence, while Person 1 sounds unsure of him/herself.
The solution is simple: edit your words before publishing them. Omit the phrases “I think” and “I believe” as these lessen your authority. Instead, simply state something outright. The aggressive action will cause others to deem you as being confident!
If you need a professional editor to help you polish and tighten your writing, hire one. I can help; I offer editing services (in addition to others).
#4. Use Emoticons
Seriously. Use emoticons to help you convey your emotions. Some people think they are cheesy, but they help you come across as likeable.
It is often difficult for others to understand sarcasm through the written word only, so using the “wink” emoticon will help others know you are not being 100% serious. If you are particularly sad, the sad face emoticon helps convey this emotion.
The four most popular emoticons – and how to write them – are as follows:
Wink = semi-colon + end bracket 😉
Sad face = colon + start bracket 🙁
Smile = colon + end bracket 🙂
Big grin = colon + capital d 😀
#5. Don’t Be Afraid: Take Risks
Many people are afraid. Fear can be crippling. Don’t let it get the better of you.
I still remember how scared I was to publish my post about my false teeth. I held my breath and hit the publish button (yes, this was when I was a newbie blogger, long before I knew about scheduling – can you believe it???) – and now that post is one of my top-performing posts on my blog, ranking on the first page of Google search.
Sometimes taking a chance on yourself pays off, even though you are scared or shy.
It did in my case, so it will for others, too. Of that, I am positive!
#6. Give So You Can Receive
This is not a difficult concept to understand, but it is one that is magical. If you constantly help others, when it comes time for you to ask for something, you will be more likely to get it because you have given so much in the past. However, don’t just give because you want something. People will see right through you. Phonies can be spotted a mile away!
If you give a lot, people are likely to let you get away with a few things, too. I speak from experience here; I pushed the envelope in a comment left on Be A Freelance Blogger: Win $100 for Your Guest Post in Our 5th Pitchfest. What I did was pitch my idea (the give) and then mention something that might attract visitors to MY blog (the take).
I got away with it, too…
Take a look at the conversation that ensued!!!
Note that the following image only shows the ending of the first comment I made, where I “advertise” my offer to Sophie Lizard’s audience. Sophie’s editor, Lauren Thorpe, responds to me quite well, and has not edited my comment at all, even though I later told her she could!
Then, another BAFB reader chimed in, complimenting me. Although I initially misunderstood her, she clarified her response when asked.
I even mentioned that I was writing THIS article for Dear Blogger (more take on my part!) and will keep my promise to Lynn and let her know about this series.
#7. Practice Gratitude
Make a list of what you are grateful for, and read it daily. Add to it often.
Be sincere, honest and open with the universe, and good karma will come your way.
Set aside time each day to mentally list everything you have to be grateful for. Recall your past successes, unique skills, loving relationships, and positive momentum. You’ll be amazed how much you have going for you and motivated to take that next step towards success.
~source: 10 Ways to Instantly Build Self Confidence (Pick the Brain)
#8. Chant Affirmations and/or Practice Mirror Love
Have you ever been told to stand in front of the mirror and tell yourself nice things, to improve your confidence? It might sound silly or stupid to you, but it works.
What to do:
Stand in front of a mirror and speak aloud.
What to say:
I am beautiful. I am smart. I am funny. I am confident. I am positive. I’m a good person. I can conquer my fears.
If this is too corny for you, you can achieve the same results by reciting affirmations.
Chanting affirmations will help you to change your current belief system and become more confident, too. After partaking in this practice for only a week, I was dripping with confidence!
Affirmations are positive statements that are repeated on a daily basis that alter your current (usually negative) beliefs by sinking into your subconscious. While they initially may not be true, the constant repetition of them eventually makes them a reality – or so the theory goes. What’s surprising is that this theory holds true.
Like you, I was initially skeptical when this theory was introduced to me, but I figured I’d give it a shot, since I had nothing to lose and everything to gain. So I tested out this theory by following the recommended steps to creating affirmations of my own, which are:
Identify the areas of your life you want to change
Write out specific statements that are opposite of your negative beliefs and negative self-talk
Begin and end each day by reading these affirmations, saying them aloud for added impact
Some sample affirmations to get you started
*Today I am going to take one step towards kick-starting my success.
*I am a talented writer and I’m constantly improving my craft.
*I expect success.
*I love blogging and am getting better at it.
~Source: Two Simple Things You Can Do to Kick-start your Writing Success (also written by yours truly!)
Please read that article to see a list of other affirmations you can use.
You can also watch Ralph Quintero’s video and read his article of 80 Affirmations for Entrepreneurs to learn a few more.
# 9. Have an Open Mind and Admit your Shortcomings
Not everyone thinks the way you do. You’re not right all of the time, either. The sooner you accept this, the better off you’ll be. By having an open mind, admitting your own shortcomings, and realizing that others are much smarter and talented than you are, you can ooze confidence easily, as you will be able to focus on what you DO know instead of what you don’t.
#10. Stop Caring What Others Think
One thing I’ve noticed about myself as I get older (I’m now 43, even though I look about 33!) is that I don’t much care what others think…
Seriously; they’re either going to like me or they’re not.
The world is big enough for all of us to co-exist with one another, and I’m not out to make a ton of new friends I’ll likely never meet in real life. Are you?
I’ve noticed that I’m more laid back than I ever was, too. This is a result of having a near-death experience about two years ago. While I’m not suggesting you should go out and have your own near-death experience, I’d like for you to close your eyes and take a moment to picture yourself in a hospital, with only two hours left to live. Who do you want to be with you? Make that person (or people) part of your life.
I can hear you asking, “What does this have to do with blogging?” Okay, I’ll tell you. First of all, you need to figure out what it is that you truly want to accomplish before you die. Forget blogging. What is important to YOU?
Once you know that, everything else will be easy. Blogging included.
#11. Educate Yourself Further
Don’t stop here… continue reading!
Confidence is not something you will gain overnight. Different areas of your life might need a touch-up. If you really want to learn about how to ooze it, I would suggest reading a few related articles on this subject.
You need to identify where you most need to improve yourself, too.
Wiki-How’s 3-Part article on How to Be Confident point out a few other things to think and do to build your confidence, both online and offline. I particularly like Parts 2 and 3.
How To Turn Your Weaknesses Into Strengths To Make A Good Impression is a good article, too, as is Copyblogger’s article How to Become an Authority Blogger (from where the quote in the picture originated).
Imposter syndrome: They ooze confidence, so why do so many career women feel they’re not up to it? is an interesting read (even for guys), but what really takes the cake is Create Content That Oozes Confidence, as it provides 5 great tips for building confidence in your content.
Finding confidence to blog comes with practice, though, but, as the ancient saying — dating back to the 1500’s — says, practice makes perfect.