If you want to appear more confident, start practicing these 8 simple body language tricks

by Liv Walde | April 12, 2024, 9:43 pm

Some are born with natural confidence.

Others have to learn it.

And if you belong to the latter group, it can be a struggle to appear as self-confident as those around you.

Occasionally, people might mistake your lack of confidence for shyness or even aloofness – which really sucks.

But practice makes perfect, and lucky for you, I have 8 simple body language tricks that can help you exude confidence.

Ready to start practicing?

1) Stand up tall and straight

Starting off easy, I’m sure you can still hear your parents or grandparents voice in your ears.]

“Stand straight! Shoulders down!”

You might’ve resisted as a child, but trust me – when you stand up straight, with your shoulders back and your head held high, you’re communicating confidence to the people around you.

And this body language trick is all about portraying yourself as a confident person, even if you don’t necessarily feel that way inside.

Unfortunately, many of us spend hours slumped over desktops and walk around perpetually hunched over.

In turn, people often read this hunched posture as a sign of insecurity or low self-esteem.

That’s why standing straight is a simple, yet powerful way to show the world that you’re confident and ready to take on anything that comes your way.

2) Keep appropriate eye contact

Staring straight into someone’s eyes can be a bit daunting if you lack confidence.

A little trick I was taught was, if flustered, to aim for the bridge between someone’s eyes.

Because when you’re in conversation, looking your companion in the eye can make a big difference in how they perceive you.

Healthy eye contact signals that you’re not only interested in what they’re saying, but also confident in your own thoughts and ideas.

In contrast, letting your eyes wander when you’re feeling nervous or uncomfortable can make you come across as visibly uneasy. 

Manners aside, remember to look people in the eye when you’re speaking to them – it’s an easy way to exude confidence!

3) Clear and slow enunciation

On top of body language tricks, the way that you speak also has a huge impact upon how you’re perceived.

Speaking clearly and slowly and enunciating your words is an easy way to instantly boost your confidence levels.

By showing that you have confidence in yourself and what you’re saying, you’re demonstrating your ability to articulate your thoughts and ideas in an elegant manner.

Interestingly enough, it’s not just about what you say, but also how you say it. 

So, deep breath, take it slow, and work on speaking clearly and slowly to enhance your overall confidence.

4) Nod along and show you’re listening

Active listening goes a long way in conveying self-confidence.

A big part of this is demonstrating that you’re fully invested in what the other person is saying through non-verbal affirmations.

Nodding is a simple, universal gesture that signals understanding and engagement. 

On top of keeping eye contact, nodding along whilst listening shows that you’re actively engaged in the conversation and understand what the other person is saying.

Of course, we all have moments when we feel overwhelmed or unsure in conversations. 

So if in doubt, something as small as a nod can show that you’re confident in your understanding of what’s being said. 

5) Be conscious of open body language

Say you’re telling a friend all about your difficult day at work. 

In response, they:

1) Turn away, cross their arms, fidget, and look elsewhere at the sky.

2) Lean in towards you, keep eye contact, and keep their arms at their sides.

I’m going to wager a bet that you’ll feel far more confident in continuing to vent if they meet you with 2).

Open body language involves uncrossing your legs and leaning in towards the speaker (to an appropriate level – they don’t want to be able to smell your breath!)

When you use open body language, you’re essentially saying, “I’m comfortable in this situation and I’m open to what you have to say.”

Not only does it make you appear more confident, but it also helps to put others at ease and make them more receptive to your ideas.

6) Happy, genuine smiles

Easily overlooked but hugely valuable for when it comes to conveying poise and confidence is a truly genuine smile.

It’s easy to pull your lips into a halfhearted, faked grimace, but it hardly carries the same weight as a genuine smile. 

And trust me – people can tell the difference.

It might be hard at first, but try and think of something positive, perhaps a nice memory or something you like, and work with that to combat any anxiety you feel on the inside.

7) Hands out of pockets

Easy peasy – get those fingers out of your pockets!

Sticking your hands in your pockets mid-conversation gives off the impression that you’re uncomfortable, uneasy, or otherwise closed off.

But an extension of the open body language we mentioned above, taking your hands out of your pockets, it opens up your body language and makes you appear more confident and approachable.

So next time you’re chatting to someone at a party, try and remember to free your hands and keep them visible.

This helps project an image of confidence and ease, and will be very noticeable and appreciated to whomever you’re speaking to.

8) No fidgeting!

Finally, we can all be guilty of engaging in a little hair-twirling, nail-biting, or tapping of feet.

Whether out of boredom or anxiety, the result is the same. 

Excessive fidgeting is perceived as an open demonstration of a lack of confidence…

Hardly what we want now, is it?

These behaviors are often unconscious, so the key is realizing when you’re fidgeting, and then putting a stop to it.

So next time you find yourself in a stressful conversation, be mindful of what your hands and feet are up to.

Slowly start limiting the fidgeting and keep your focus on the person in front of you. 

You’ll be amazed at the difference in how you’re perceived.

Practice makes perfect

Now you know all of the little tips and trips to appear more confident, it’s time to start putting them to use.

Just like any other skill, improving your body language takes time and consistent effort

It won’t happen overnight, but with conscious practice, these tips can become second nature to you.

Remember, confidence isn’t something you’re born with – it’s something you build. 

(Check out our guide for more tips on how to build self-confidence).

And with practice, you can master these body language tricks and project a more confident image to the world.

So stand tall, speak clearly, and let your true self shine through.

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