If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavours to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours. ~ Henry David Thoreau

Are you being held back because of lack of confidence?

Here are 7 habits of highly confident people you can practice to increase your confidence level and become more at ease with your authentic self.

Make a mental note on how you are doing with each habit and give yourself a rating. I suggest a scoring scale of 1-5 with 1 being “this is not a very strong characteristic for me”, and 5 being “this is a characteristic I strongly possess.”

Habit 1 is accepting personal responsibility. Confident people accept responsibility for their lives, their decisions, and their behaviours. This means they understand that when it’s all said and done, they are responsible for the choices they have made and the life they have led.

Confident people understand that they may not always have control over what happens in their lives but they do have control over their responses. They take responsibility for how they respond to life.

So, how about you? Do you make it a habit to take personal responsibility? If so, give yourself a 5. And, if you find yourself making excuses or blaming others, then give yourself a lower score.

Habit 2 – Confident people act in spite of their fears. That’s what courage is. We all have fears – fear of failure, fear of not measuring up, fear of appearing stupid. It’s part of the human condition. We all like to succeed, don’t we? I know I do. And yet, it is the fear of failure that keeps many people from living fully, from claiming their personal power.

You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face.~ Eleanor Roosevelt

Confident people are willing to step out of their comfort zone and give their best shot to something new, in spite of their anxieties or fears.

How do you rate yourself on moving forward in spite of fear? How courageous are you?

Tolerance for others is the 3rd habit of confident people. We all lose our patience with friends, families, and even strangers at one time or another. I have seen this on many occasions over this time leading up to the Christmas holiday season!! Again, that’s human nature. But the confident person values others and instead of being put off by their errors confident people are willing to lend support, give constructive feedback, or sometimes just give another person a hand up.

How tolerant are you?

The 4th habit of confident people is that they are quick to give praise and recognition to others. Confident people don’t take all the credit. They willingly share the credit. Confident people recognise that rarely does something positive happen based solely on one person’s efforts. They appreciate those that are often behind the scenes.

Do you share the credit as often as you should? How do you rate on this attribute of a confident person?

Habit number 5 may sound a little contradictory on the heels of habit 4 – but I think it’s important that this habit gets its due attention. Confident people are proud of a job well done and accepting of recognition. This does not mean that confident people are boastful – in fact, boasting is a sure sign of lack of confidence. No, what this means is that confident people accept recognition and praise for a job well done, an effort well made, and a success well earned. They do with a heartfelt and engaging, “Thank you.”

Can you remember the last deserved praise or compliment you were given? Did you graciously receive it or shrug it off? Rate yourself.

The 6th habit of confident people is that they have goals. Confident people realise that life is a work in progress and that opportunities abound for success and self-fulfilment. Confident people are not afraid to set goals, make plans and then take steps to reach their goals. They also understand there will be some challenges and setbacks, and adjustments will have to be made. They are constantly re-evaluating and adjusting to get to where they want to go.

How about you? Have you begun to set your goals for 2015? Will you begin 2015 with confidence? Rate yourself on your ability to set and reach your goals.

The 7th confidence habit is this. Confident people are not afraid to stand for something. They understand that values are tested at every turn of life, but confident people place their beliefs above their need to be liked by everyone. Of course, it’s nice to be liked by everyone, but the reality is that staying true to our beliefs and values is not always the popular decision. Confident people are generally willing to compromise, but not their values. And that is one of the main reasons that we respect people with confidence.

Make 2015 the year you express who you truly are and pursue your heart’s desire without restriction set by others or yourself.

So your final rating is about values and beliefs. How well do you hold steadfast to yours, especially in the face of others? How well are your values aligned to your behaviours, leadership, goals and what you do?

If one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavours to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours. ~ Henry David Thoreau

So there you have it – 7 habits of confident people.

How did you score?

Marcie