Influencing self-confidence

People gain self-confidence in our presence when we are curious about them and their thought processes. By being interested in their lines of reasoning, they become more interesting, resourceful and capable of acting confident. If we are also curious about how their confidence grows, we will explore different ways to have an effect on their esteem, resolve and efficacy.

People with self-confidence can make choices on their own. They rely on their better judgment. They have broken an unhealthy dependency on others' advice. They have discovered their own priorities to be a better guide. They go within to get a sense of direction. They have experienced being reliable in relationships that trusted them, saw their potential and valued their contribution. They have outgrown their hysterical, fearful and guilt-based ways to lack self-confidence.

You may choose to disagree with this. Some people think they can build another's self-confidence without being curious and inquisitive. Others think confidence is something fascinating that people grow on their own. It's up to you to choose between fixing people's broken self-confidence with your advice or trusting the effect of your showing an interest in their growth and experiences.

There's two ways to send a message of encouragement to people in need of more self confidence. One way is very direct and tells them to take pride in their efforts and to act more confident. The other way indirectly sends a message that increases their confidence by trusting them to make choices on their own. As you make up own mind as to whether a direct or indirect approach works best for you, consider which approach I'm using with you.

Some people see self-confidence as highly contagious. When they have enough confidence in themselves to show confidence in other people, the others become more confident. They let people catch on to where they are coming from, how they come across and how they see those others.

Others see self-confidence as highly elusive. They are plagued by people oscillating between self pity and grandiosity; too little and too much confidence. They cannot get others to find the middle ground or get the pendulum to stop swinging wildly. They know that other's self confidence has nothing to do with them or their own outlook. They disregard where they are coming from personally, how they come across and how they see the others.

I'm confident you can work through these issues and choose the ways to have a positive effect on others' confidence that make the most sense to you.


  1. confidence has very much to do with knowing you always have a choice.

    if you do not believe that then you will act from frustration, and a place of i had to do it without feeling it was your best option and something you wanted to do.
    see the choices first and then the confidence will follow. options help with confidence but you have to be willing to look and see them.

  2. I'm not sure you can "build" someone else's confidence.

    I do believe, however, that being your authentic self and being fully present for the other person creates an environment that is free of judgment and safe for the other person to experiment with their own authenticity.

    Being who they are in a safe environment begins to build confidence.


  3. Thanks for jumping in here, pete.
    I've had experiences when coaching executives and mentoring entrepreneurs where I watched their confidence grow in the non-judgmental presence I provided. I've also seen the opposite occur where students lost confidence in the presence of a "control freak instructor" who could only dish out criticism.

    I'm also not sure about "building" other's confidence and like metaphors of "growing" better. Your understanding of the effects of our authentic selves on others -- is inspiring!