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By Charlie Palumbo, Author Charlie is a global thought leader developing solutions for veterans and spouses on their discovery to what is next in their lives.  She is a poet, mother of two wild and amazing boys, wife, Navy veteran, and advocate.  She is always seeking ways to inspire others to find their most passionate selves. She is on the core team of Women Empowered Global. 


“I can’t think of any better representation of beauty than someone who is unafraid to be herself.” Emma Stone

Many women are not taught how to be confident but to see confidence as a negative and prideful attribute; worrying that they will be seen as too much, arrogant or bragging. At some point, the choice gets made to stay small, hiding the beautiful and authentic parts of themselves, afraid of what others may say or think.

There are three big confidence killers:

•  Comparing yourself to others
•  The uncontrolled inner critic
•  Listening to the judgements of others

In a digital world the propensity to scroll through other’s lives and compare ourselves is a daily battle. People’s feeds are meant to portray their brand and many influencers spend hours staging their lives for profit online.

For girls and women, the messaging often becomes physical beauty is confidence. Your worth is valued by your physical appearance.

This creates action to correct, retouch, and hide any flaws to be perceived as beautiful and confident. Remember, confidence isn’t about physical beauty or society’s idea of beautiful but is about an energy, internal strength, a knowing of your power and your self-worth. If you find yourself slipping into the comparison trap, take a break from it and don’t believe that confidence is airbrushed.

While social media has become a tool for comparison, it’s not the only way women compare themselves to others. Motherhood tends to be an especially tough time for comparing yourself to others. As new mother’s you feel lonely, tired and underprepared; so, it’s easy to look at all the other mom’s and think they have it together.

Check your narrative, talk to another mom and find out how they really feel, most of them aren’t feeling any more confident than you are.

There is also the comparison of friends, work, and marriage. Society has put a high value on competition. We tend to look at others and derive our worth from how we can be better than someone else. Really, we should be collaborating, sharing our true selves and stories, to support the growth and evolution of each other.

To be confident you must be aware of your own self critic. That voice that is always shaming you, telling you that you aren’t good enough or pretty enough. The doubting part of you that reiterates how insignificant you really are or that tells you stop trying because you will never succeed. That voice should not be in the driver seat, to get rid of it you must first be able to recognize it.

Confidence also takes avoiding others judgement masked as support or constructive criticism. Those in your life that are supportive will be full of radical candor and genuine interest in you, get good at knowing the difference.

The world may judge you, and I assure you they will, it is NOT necessary for you to pay attention to their judgements that is YOUR choice. Choose wisely it creates your path.

Check in, are you confident? Are you doing any of those three things mentioned above? Or is there something else holding you back from the life you want to lead? If there is check in and explore why.

The good news is that if you find that you are lacking confidence that’s okay it is absolutely a skill you can learn, like anything else it takes practice. K. Anders Ericsson writes, “If you practice something for a few hundred hours, you will almost certainly see great improvement.”

There are a variety of ways to build your confidence: coaching, mentorship, self-help videos, stretch assignments, and affirmations. Find what supports you and make it a habit. You may notice forming a new habit can be challenging but it WILL create the change you desire…stick with it!

Ultimately, You win at life because you are confident and perceive that you are winning. Don’t let others define you as ordinary when you are capable of being extraordinary. Don’t play small, you only get one life make it a GREAT.



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