i know this isn't a place to post articles, but I see the term "be confident" thrown around so much in the assylum that i just have to post an excerpt from an excellent article i found... http://www.scotthyoung.com/blog/2007/04/08/the-myth-of-confidence/ So here’s the truth about confidence: You can only have confidence when other people give it to you. When others in your age group like you, respect you, admire you, and are attracted to you, you get confidence. When they don’t like you, scorn you, and reject you, you lose confidence. Therefore, the level of confidence you have is controlled by others, NOT by you. You can not just decide to be confident. Confidence is not a choice or decision you can make. You can’t just snap your fingers and, Abracadabra, you’re confident. It doesn’t work that way. It can’t work that way. Social confidence, by it’s very definition, requires support and acceptance from others (in your own age group) before it can exist. Confidence is merely a byproduct of success. You need some kind of social/sexual/romantic success before you can have genuine confidence. Confidence without success is delusional and/or dishonest, thus fake, and [size=+1]others will quickly recognize it as such[/size]. Here’s why: It’s not really the confidence itself that people are attracted to. Confidence is merely what results when someone has the qualities that are really attracting us. Obviously, if someone is good-looking, or wealthy, or funny & quick-witted, others will be attracted to them. This, in turn, will give them confidence. So when someone tells you they are attracted to confidence, they are lying! (whether consciously or subconsciously) What they’re really attracted to are the traits that make confidence possible. After all, we all know that wealth, good looks, and strong social skills are attractive to others. Are we to believe it’s just a coincidence that these are the very same traits that lead to confidence? Obviously, someone who is successful will have more confidence than someone who is unsuccessful. So when someone says they’re attracted to confidence, what it means is that they’re attracted to success & the factors that make success possible. The confidence itself merely exists as a sign that those other factors (the real attractors) are present. ------ In the end, he says that in order to make a difference, you need to have the person work on 1. Their appearance 2. Their social skills (which can be kind of a catch -22) and 3. Their wealth, in that order not give empty and completely meaningless advice to "be confident"