Harvard Psychologist Reveals The Secret To Self-Confidence

‘It’s not about tricking other people’

Self-confidence is one of the most important factors in determining one’s success in life. A heightened sense of self-efficacy makes people more likely to try news things, helps them rebound after failure, and is very attractive to others in social and professional settings. But there’s a chicken-and-egg problem with self-confidence. How does one get it before achieving the success that naturally creates it? Harvard psychologist Amy Cuddy, author of “Presence,” says the best way to become self-confident is to “fake it ‘til you make it.”

“When I say ‘fake it ‘til you make it’ I’m not talking about tricking other people,” Cuddy says in the video above. “I’m talking about actually tricking yourself into actually being your fullest self.” Cuddy believes that by approaching situations with a bit of trumped-up confidence you begin to self-reinforce those positive behaviors until they come natually. As this sense develops, others around you will begin to react to you as if you are confident person as well.

“The more you behave that way, the more your mind and body are sort of reinforcing this feeling of being powerful and being confident,” Cuddy says. She also believes this cycle of reinforcement will eventually lead you to becoming the confident person you always wanted to be. So next time you feel out of your league in a professional or social situation, there’s nothing wrong with faking it a little because it’s the best way to help you make it.