The Power of Posture

In this TED talk, Amy Cuddy, Ph.D., explains in 21 minutes how your posture has a powerful influence on your level of confidence.

3 Tips to Spot Counterfeit Confidence

Ruth, a client of mine, was very hesitant to work on developing more confidence. We had spent several sessions working on various family issues that were distressing and lingered in her psyche. Since those issues had been resolved, I suggested that it was time for her to move to the next level of having more self-confidence in both her personal and professional relationships.

Ruth was reluctant, so I asked her to explain what held her back. “I don’t want to be arrogant,” was her emphatic reply. Ruth had confused confidence with arrogance.

Ruth had been exposed to people who covered up their fears and insecurity with false confidence, so she was trapped in being timid and insecure in her relationships to avoid counterfeit confidence.

Spot counterfeit confidence with these 3 tips.

  1. Arrogance is not confidence Arrogance is being egotistical and conceited and having an attitude of superiority. The arrogant person usually insists on being “right,” argues or won’t tolerate discussions or dissenting opinions. This kind of persons is commonly called a “jerk”.
  2. Bragging about achievements is not confidence You have seen or heard someone boast about their extraordinary feats or remarkable triumphs in a way that is intended to make them superior to other people.

Braggarts often engage in “name dropping”. In this way, they try to enhance their own social standing by indicating they have some connection to another person with status or prestige, such as a celebrity or local authority.

Cataloging one’s accomplishment as a way of establishing credibility is not bragging. Detailing accomplishments is a way of backing up your claims that you can do the job.

  1. “Liquid courage” is not confidence – The so-called self-assurance that comes from drinking alcohol or smoking dope to medicate anxiety in a social situation is not really confidence. Drinking may allow the person to temporarily overcome nervousness and chat more easily at a cocktail party or a business mixer, but it is counterfeit confidence.

What is authentic confidence? The root of the word means trust. Your trust you physician, so you have confidence in him or her. You trust your car mechanic, so you have confidence in him or her.

Self-confidence is trusting your self to handle whatever you are facing. Being confident is trusting your skills, whether it is driving a car, chatting with a stranger at a party, doing your job, hitting the golf ball or barreling down a ski slope.

Don’t be guilty of counterfeit confidence. Do the genuine emotional work and acquire the necessary skills, so that your confidence is rock solid bona fide.

Confidence Tip: EFT, Emotional Freedom Technique, is a very effective method for quickly cultivating confidence.

5 Common Blunders That Ruin Your Confidence & How to Cure Them

Blunder #1 – Discount your successes and achievements:

A friend once told me, “As soon as I reach my goal, it doesn’t count anymore,” so he ignored one of the major building blocks of confidence.


Acknowledge and count your small daily successes and give yourself credit. A legitimate pat on the back won’t give you a big head and it will build confidence.

Blunder #2 – Reinforce your flaws, inadequacies, and shortcomings with frequent declarations:

Keep telling yourself – and others - that:

  • I can’t do that,
  • I always make that mistake,
  • I’m such an idiot and other put-downs.
  • I’ll never…..

“Argue for your limits and they’re yours,” to quote author Richard Bach. And those limitations keep you stuck without the confidence to move forward.

Remedy:  Either accept your inadequacies and be quiet or choose to develop the character trait or the skill you would like to have. If you can’t do something, get a teacher, read a book, hire a consultant. Learning always improves confidence.

Blunder #3 – Believe you have to be perfect or your achievements have to be perfect.

This is a confidence killer. Nobody is perfect and everybody makes mistakes. “Perfection” is only possible when a team works together to back each other up to catch the mistakes and rectify them.


Give yourself permission to make mistakes, learn from them and do better the next time. Even Phil Mickelson has his bad days on the golf course.

Blunder #4 – Ignore your body’s need for enough sleep.

Research clearly demonstrates that even a few days of sleep shortages cause the amygdala, a structure deep in your brain that regulates moods and emotions, to go into overdrive with fear and anxiety. Confidence vanishes as fatigue sets in.


Get off of Facebook, quit the video games, turn off the TV, and go to sleep. If you can’t turn off the TV, select a soothing station and set the timer for the TV to shut off automatically. Use a sleep app. Give your mind and body time to down-regulate from the stress of the day.

Blunder #5 - Never admit you are wrong and never apologize

People who do this are very small inside and feel very, very insecure. They are doomed to repeat their mistakes and fear doing so. What confidence can they possibly have?


Decide to be a “bigger” person, learn to take responsibility for your mistakes and learn to apologize. Responsibility is not blaming. It is the ability and the power to right the wrong. Paradoxically, your confidence in yourself will expand and your insecurity will diminish.

Confidence Tip: EFT or Emotional Freedom Technique is a very effective method for quickly changing mental patterns that sabotage your confidence.

6 Tips on How to Feed Your Confidence & Starve Your Fear

Avoid your dream and you feed your fear. Feed your fear and it grows.

 Eventually, you will be ruled by your fear, as your life becomes smaller and smaller. You will have less and less confidence. It becomes a vicious cycle, because as your life shrinks, your anxiety continues to grow.

Use common sense. Fear is a necessary warning when you use it correctly. You don’t jump off a building because you are afraid of severely injuring or killing yourself. This is a rational and sane fear that keeps you alive and healthy. This fear is a good thing.

The fear referred to here is the fear that stops you cold and prevents you from having the confidence to live your dream.

Starve your fear and feed your confidence with these 6 tips.


Make a decision to do it. Yes, you made an active decision to procrastinate or avoid taking action, even if you didn’t notice that you were making a decision. You and only you are responsible. You chose to watch TV or even clean the bathroom, rather than face your anxiety, do some problem solving and get help to be confident.

Decide to regularly do something constructive to build your confidence. Find your favorite quote and post it on the bathroom mirror. Watch your favorite YouTube inspirational video every morning.


Now, do it. If you procrastinate on something that you need to do, you feed the fear.  Don’t let the action that will advance your dream constantly slide to the bottom of your “to do” list.

Build a little bit of confidence every time you take action.


Don’t listen to the voice of fear.  If you tell yourself you are not strong enough, not smart enough, not good enough, you won’t have the confidence to go for your dream. That voice has a very good strategy to keep you down. It stops you from gaining the skill, the knowledge and exercising your talent to make your dream come true.

Find good people with strong voices. Listen to the ones who can realistically help counteract the voice of fear.


Silence the voice of fear. What you resist, persists. Don’t try to suppress that voice. It only gets stronger.

Acknowledge the voice then tell it, “Thank you for sharing, now be quiet.” An even stronger message is, “Thank you for sharing, now shut up.” Say either one as many times as necessary for about 3 days and the voice will be silenced.


Stop beating yourself up for avoiding. If you call yourself names, nasty names that make you feel bad, you will just avoid more. This is sure to rob you of confidence. The problem is that you secretly believe that you are absolutely right to beat yourself up this way.

You have to be willing to seriously revise your secret beliefs and create better ones that sustain your confidence and support your dream.


Find your voice of encouragement. The other problem is that you also believe that beating yourself up is an effective strategy to get you going. Wrong. It just demoralizes you.

Develop the knowledge and skills that make your dreams come true. Did you watch American Idol? The final contestants constantly had to accept professional feedback that honed their talent.

Watch and learn, then copy.


Confidence Tip: Emotional Freedom Technique, EFT or tapping, is an amazing technique to starve your fear and feed your confidence.

5 Dumb Mistakes That Wreck Your Confidence & How To Fix Them

Be nasty to yourself. Call yourself ugly names. Swear at yourself. Beat yourself up, then put yourself down in the mistaken belief that it will make you do better. It does not. It just makes you feel wrong, feel bad, feel ashamed and then you get defensive. You get stuck in the past in the mistake.

Remedy: If you make a mistake, learn from it. This strategy gives you a direction and increases your confidence because you have deliberately thought about how to do better in the future. Learning from your mistakes is empowering.

Overestimate your ability, so you crash and burn when reality hits. Researchers James C. Kaufman and Michelle Evans in Psychology Today named this self-delusion, “The American Idol Effect”. It is particularly toxic when it is endorsed by your family.

Remedy: Get reality checks from people you trust to give you good, honest feedback that helps you sharpen your skills and legitimately build up your confidence.

Habitually avoid something every time you are afraid or anxious. There are times when the wisest course of action is to avoid. Do this all the time, however, and your confidence will vanish. When you habitually avoid, you are choosing to let fear rule your mind.

Remedy: “Do something every day that scares you,” advised Eleanor Roosevelt. I would add to her wisdom, “…and be smart about it.” Exercise your confidence muscle every day by doing something that is just a little bit scary for you.

Always stay in your comfort zone. Your world will get smaller and smaller as you become less and less confident in yourself and your abilities.

Remedy: Move out of your comfort zone just inches at a time instead of miles. Just a few inches a day every day will enhance your confidence quotient.

Constantly worry about all the things you cannot control. You are sure to lose confidence as you relentlessly focus on all the times and places that you are powerless.

Remedy: Acknowledge what you cannot do and then move on. Identify what you can do in the situation. It takes some thought and may not be easy to change your focus, but your confidence will dramatically progress as you practice this kind of thinking. This idea is poetically expressed in the Serenity Prayer.

Confidence Tip: EFT, Emotional Freedom Technique, is a very effective method for quickly curing these mental patterns.

Change the 3 Bad Habits Guaranteed to Corrode Your Confidence

Confidence feels good, so you want more. Confidence is the “fix” for anxiety, which doesn’t feel good. Avoiding situations in which you feel uncomfortable leads you to conclude that you lack confidence.


These three bad habits are guaranteed to sabotage your confidence and expand your anxiety.


  1. Deprive yourself of enough sleep. Research clearly shows that lack of sleep causes that part of your brain that generates anxiety, the amygdala, to be overactive. Your world is a much scarier place when you are chronically tired. You have more unnecessary anxiety simply because you ignore your body’s need for rest.

Don’t work against your brain. It will win every time. And you will believe that you lack confidence, instead of just lacking sleep.


  1. Drink lots of caffeine. Being tired causes you to solve that problem with stimulants to get your motor running: coffee, colas, high octane sodas, like Red Bull and Monster, Inc. It is a great temporary fix, but the caffeine interferes with your brain’s ability to gear down and go to sleep at the appropriate time for you. You are creating a vicious cycle.


Watch out for using alcohol and recreational drugs to medicate your caffeine-induced insomnia and sleep-deprived anxiety.


  1. Be a passive adrenalin junkie. Watch lots of TV and be on your computer for several hours each evening to feed this nasty cycle even more. Video games are especially great for this. All of these activities stimulate your brain and your adrenalin constantly.

Make sure that the TV you watch jacks up your amygdala with murder and crime shows, bad news about the world, disasters and other terrible things that happen to people. You can routinely include slasher and monster movies in the evening. Video games are excellent sources of stimulation at night to delay your ability to get to sleep.


All of the self-help you read to develop more confidence will only be moderately effective as long as you continue to jack up your anxiety with sleep deprivation, lots of caffeine and adrenalin.

Now you have the ammunition to turn your life around and change these 3 bad habits. If you are truly going to be confident today, start with a solid foundation.


Be smart. You can figure out which habit to tackle first to increase your level of confidence. Confidence is always a choice, so notice what you are choosing today – confidence or anxiety.


Confidence Tip: EFT or Emotional Freedom Technique is a very effective method for quickly changing mental patterns that sabotage your confidence.



EFT and Energy Psychology Go Mainstream

EFT and Energy Psychology have made it to the big time. The Huffington Post is offering a new blog, Breakthroughs in Energy Psychology by Nick Ortner, creator of The Tapping Solution DVD. I use this DVD with clients to introduce them  to the power of EFT to resolve problems and end suffering. Nick's blog on energy psychology gives excellent background on the mind-body research under lying the power of this effective approach.

Breakthroughs in Energy Psychology: A New Way to Heal the Mind and Body

5 Important Strategies for Lasting New Year’s Confidence: Fifth Strategy


Clapping Hands



New Year’s resolutions are famously short lived, lasting only a few days or a few weeks. Rather than totally give up on resolutions, use smart strategies to build your confidence. The beginning of a new year just feels like the right time to make changes and start going in the right direction.

This is the final strategy in this series for cultivating self-confidence with your New Year’s resolutions

5. Hurrah! I did it! Give yourself the pat on the back that you deserve every time you keep your resolution, keep going in the right direction for 2012 and maintain your changes. Acknowledge the importance of your actions, even if it is only a small action each day. Small is good every day, so you can build on your successes.

Feel the satisfaction of your achievements in keeping your resolutions. Feel just a little bit slimmer. Feel just a little bit stronger from your exercise. Feel just a little bit more generous when you compliment a friend.

Don’t belittle your early efforts at making a change and think that it is not good enough or not significant enough. If you put down your first efforts, you will quickly give up. Reward every little bit and the “little bits” will quickly accumulate to something you are truly proud of.

The appreciation you give yourself provides an enormous boost to your confidence.

© High Five Motivation, LLC
Give Me Confidence at www.BeConfidentToday.com
Lynn Kennedy Baxter, BSN, MA
(719) 534-3104

5 Important Strategies for Lasting New Year’s Confidence: Fourth Strategy

Question Mark
What is your intention?

New Year’s resolutions are famously short lived, lasting only a few days or a few weeks. Rather than totally give up on resolutions, use smart strategies to build your confidence. The beginning of a new year just feels like the right time to make changes and start going in the right direction.

I’ll post one important strategy each day over the first 5 days of 2012 to help you be successful with your resolutions and build your self-confidence. Come back tomorrow for the fifth strategy.

4. Do you really want it! Or is it a “should”?

If the resolution you are making to change something in your life is a “should” in your mind, such as “I should exercise this year,” “I really should give up sweets,” then I guarantee it won’t happen. Why?

“Shoulds” are externally imposed rules, even if you are doing the imposing on yourself, so they have no real lasting power to produce change. “Shoulds” are the parental rules we internalize. Then the inner child can rebel, only keep the resolution for a while and quickly succumb to excuses and reasons to disregard the resolution.

You have to want the result that your resolution will create more than you want the old behavior. The desire to be slimmer has to outweigh the desire for chocolate, pun intended. The desire to be more generous this year has to be more rewarding than selfish desires.

Get in touch with your true desires, your wants, to build your self-confidence.

© High Five Motivation, LLC
Give Me Confidence at www.BeConfidentToday.com
Lynn Kennedy Baxter, BSN, MA
(719) 534-3104

Contact Info

Lynn Kennedy Baxter, RN, MA
Licensed Marriage & Family Therapy
License #16946

5701 Lonetree Blvd., Suite 204D,
Rocklin, CA 95765

1+ (719)-534-3104

[email protected]

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