When you hear the word confident, what do you imagine?
I used to picture myself walking into a room being the life and soul of the party; loud and having groups of people hanging on my every word. I definitely didn't see any overlap between confidence and introversion!
“I believed no one would ever find me interesting or want me around unless I matched their outgoing, charasmatic energy.”
There were lots of experiences around me to feed into the belief that confidence and extroversion go hand in hand. Teachers would comment that I should share more in class and that I was 'shy'. Friends would tell me to be more outgoing. Self-help books would give suggestions on how to be more charismatic and become a social butterfly. Everywhere I looked I was told that I wasn't confident if I wasn't extroverted.
The trouble was, was that I enjoyed being an introvert - even if I didn't know that's what I was at the time. I was happy in my little bubble but felt like I shouldn't be. It wasn't until I started focusing on myself that my confidence bloomed. I learnt that confidence for introverts looks different and it felt so freeing to show up as myself and not feel like I needed to apologise for the things that I wanted or enjoyed.
You don't need to be the loudest person in the room to be confident. In fact, confidence comes down to having a strong sense of self; being comfortable in your own skin and your nature in social situations. The confident introvert can happily speak up when its required of them but doesn't feel the desire to be the subject of attention all the time. They may be very accomplished in some field of endeavour, but doesn't need to boast or brag.
We introverts are oriented towards our inner world which is why we need to work from the inside out to build lasting self-esteem and confidence. If you were to build up your confidence from the inside, what would it look like for you? What would your confidence vision board look like? Getting clear on what you want confidence to look like is the first step to making it happen!