Confidence: Regaining your presence

What gives you ‘presence’?  I’m not talking about online presence here self promotion and advertising your online brand.  i think some people have it and some people don’t – yet.

I remember years ago, when I was 17, I’d arranged to meet my mother and my sister at a hotel in London.  They had arrived before me and were sitting in the foyer waiting for me.  It was really bright outside, dim inside the hotel and when I walked through the door my mother turned to my younger sister and asked “Is that Eileen?”

“Yeah” said my sister who couldn’t quite see me properly due to the sun “She looks like she owns the place”

When I was 17 I had ‘presence’  I had that unshakeable belief that the world was my oyster and that I could do anything that I believed I could do.  The unshakable confidence of youth.  And it showed.

 

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Unfortunately, I spent a long time in a series of jobs, working for companies with managers that worked to suppress individuality and confidence.  To take away the self assuredness of my younger days.  For a time, I stopped believing in myself, I stopped believing in my abilities.

I stopped believing that I could…

And now, as a business owner or entrepreneur I’ve got my presence back.  I’m more confident and more self assured than I’ve been for years.  Some of my ex colleagues say I have my mojo back. 

So what changed?

 

I’ve learned that being confident isn’t enough, you need to be assertive

I’ve learned that its ok to say no when you believe something is wrong.

I’ve learned not to acquiesce so readily when the team I’m working with disagrees with me.  They have hired me for my skills, knowledge and ability, not for my agreement to their plans

I’ve learned to speak up when I need to drive a project forwards, or correct a factual inaccuracy

I’ve learned that being right doesn’t mean being harsh or cocky or triumphant.  Its about humility

I’ve leaned that a strong low voice and a smile beats a strident shrill voice every time

Don’t let people take your mojo away.  Have you got presence?  remember what you were like when you were younger.  If you were more confident them than you are now, then take control again and walk in like you own the place.

If you’re successful enough, you know, one day you just might do…

Image credit: Flickr

Eileen is a social media consultant and author of Working The Crowd: Social Media Marketing for Business. Contact her to find out how she can help your business extend its reach.