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Confidence


What Is Confidence?

Confidence means feeling sure of yourself and your abilities — not in an arrogant way, but in a realistic, secure way. Confidence isn't about feeling superior to others. It's a quiet inner knowledge that you're capable.

Confident people:

Why Confidence Matters

Confidence helps us feel ready for life's experiences. When we're confident, we're more likely to move forward with people and opportunities — not back away from them. And if things don't work out at first, confidence helps us try again.

It's the opposite when confidence is low. People who are low on confidence might be less likely to try new things or reach out to new people. If they fail at something the first time, they might be less likely to try again. A lack of confidence can hold people back from reaching their full potential.

Believing in Yourself

Has someone told you that you're smart? Funny? Kind? Artistic? A good student? A good writer? A good athlete?

When people praise us or recognize our skills and capabilities, it can boost our confidence — as long as we believe these good things, too. If you've ever doubted the good things people say about you, that's the opposite of self-confidence.

To feel truly confident, you need to really believe you are capable. The best way to get that belief is through using your skills and talents — by learning and practicing.

Confidence helps us move forward to discover and develop our capabilities. When we see what we're capable of and take pride in our achievements, confidence gets even stronger.

How to Be More Confident

Everyone can work to gain more confidence. Here are a few tips to try:

Keep At It

Confidence levels go up and down for all of us, even the most confident-seeming people.

If something shakes your confidence, show yourself some understanding. Don't criticize yourself. Learn from what happened, think what you could have done differently, and remember it for next time. Talk about what happened with someone who cares. Then remind yourself of your strengths and the things you've achieved. Get back in the game!

Reviewed by: D'Arcy Lyness, PhD
Date reviewed: January 2015


Note: All information on TeensHealth® is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.

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