Google “how to be more confident,” some time. Do you know what you’ll find?
Generic, bullshit advice that literally doesn’t help a single person.
“Just be yourself!” “Be positive!” “Recall a time you felt powerful!” As if any of this garbage is actually going to help you. Try telling this to some hopelessly depressed dude. Yeah, okay—just be positive. Sure thing.
Give me a break. One of the most frustrating things in my entire LIFE was the complete lack of knowledge on how to actually build confidence. I recall trying to build confidence in my own life, and I literally scoured the internet and read dozens of books claiming that they’d help me.
In fact, all they did was waste my time. But I’m not going to waste your time. I’m going to tell you the truth. Once you’re done reading this article, you’ll have a completely practical way to build self-confidence. Let’s go.
First off, let’s get specific and define what it is that we’re trying to build. In my opinion, a lot of guys confuse these three concepts:
In reality these three items are completely separate. If you want to build confidence, you have to first know the difference between these three things.
Confidence is your trust in a single ability. For example, do you think that you could bench press 225 pounds? If so, you’re confident in your ability to bench press 225. Do you think that you could squat three plates? If so, you’re confident in your ability to squat three plates. Or maybe you want to get a certain job. Maybe you want to be a doctor.
Are you confident that you have the medical knowledge required to become a doctor? Or maybe you want to be a musician. Are you confident that you can sing or play the guitar really well?
Do you see the point? Confidence is area-specific.
If you have confidence in your ability to play the guitar, it does NOT carry over to other areas. If you can play the guitar really well, but have never stepped foot in the gym, it doesn’t matter how confident you are in your guitar playing abilities. You will not be confident in the gym.
If you’ve been powerlifting like Mark Rippetoe for years, but you’ve never learned to cook, it doesn’t matter if you can deadlift 600 pounds. You will not be confident in your ability to cook. Confidence is area-specific.
Core confidence, on the other hand, is not area specific. Core confidence is your trust in yourself, and in your ability to learn a new skill.
I’ll talk more about this later, but core confidence is basically what happens when you spend a long time developing a skill. For example, if you spend five years learning how to actually get girls, you will start to develop core confidence.
Core confidence comes from years of struggling, overcoming obstacles, and building skills. Why?
Because if you spent years grinding and hustling to develop one skill, you know that you can use that same work ethic and determination to build another skill.
It’s really that simple—once you develop a certain skill to an extremely high level, whatever it may be, you will start to develop core confidence. I would argue that core confidence is actually what guys want. They want to be confident not in just one area of life, but in all areas of life; I’ll talk more about how to do this later.
Confidence often times gets confused with self-esteem, but in reality they’re two entirely different things.
Confidence is your trust in yourself to perform a certain task; self-esteem is how highly you value yourself. It’s how much you respect yourself and how much you love yourself. Do you feel like you deserve success? Do you feel like you’re lovable? If not, then you likely have low self-esteem.
Having low self-esteem typically stems from an emotionally dysfunctional childhood; you don’t get the love that you deserve as a child, so because your parents didn’t love you, you feel as if you don’t deserve love.
I had cripplingly low self-esteem for YEARS, but I’ve managed to overcome it—I’ll teach you how, don’t worry.
A lot of the self-development community is filled with complete and utter hogwash, and learning to become more confident is no exception.
A lot of the woo-woo spiritual guys out there claim that self-confidence should come from some sort of “Self love, mon…you gotta realize that we’re all the same spirit, mon…love yourself, brother, and you’ll be confident.”
Well, what I would say to that, is to shut the fuck up. Confidence does not come from “loving yourself.” It doesn’t matter how much I love myself; if I’ve never repaired a computer, I won’t be confident in my fucking ability to repair a computer.
Confidence comes from competence. Confidence comes from competence. CONFIDENCE COMES FROM COMPETENCE.
If you are not COMPETENT in a certain area of your life, you will not be CONFIDENT in that certain area of your life. This is the secret to building confidence. Don’t “look inwards,” and don’t “learn to love yourself.” Just get out there and work on what it is that you want to be confident at.
This is literally the only way to develop confidence. Become competent at what it is you want to be confident at.
First, ask yourself: what do you want to be confident at? Most men reading this will actually be trying to develop core confidence, so if that’s the case, scroll down to that section. But what if you don’t give a fuck about core confidence, and you just want to be confident at a specific thing? Well, then go out there and do it.
You want to be confident in the gym? Okay, then go out there and work out.
You want to be confident in bed? Okay, then learn how to cure premature ejaculation and how to last 45 minutes in bed.
Or maybe you want to be confident in your ability to record and edit YouTube videos? Okay, then go out there and record and edit YouTube videos.
It’s really that simple. There’s no magical trick or hack to develop confidence. You have to just do what it is that you want to be confident at.
You want to be confident in your ability to confront someone? Okay, then practice a martial art and get good at confronting someone.
You want to be confident that you can seduce a woman? Okay, then get out there and practice.
It’s literally that simple. Like I said though, I think that most guys actually want “core confidence,” which is a different, but related, animal.
Core confidence, as I said before, is basically your underlying belief in yourself; it’s a general sense of confidence that isn’t area specific. For example, I’ve worked pretty hard on developing core confidence (which I’ll talk about later in this article), so even when I take up something new, I’m confident that I will succeed.
Now, keep in mind that core confidence isn’t about being delusional.
When I started Masculine Development, I had zero knowledge of blogging. I didn’t delude myself into believing that I’d have the best fucking website in existence after a month or something like that. Rather, I was confident that WITH EFFORT (and that’s the fucking key) I could make it a great blog.
Core confidence is something that you develop by repeatedly mastering other skills; there is no shortcut to it.
This is the best way to develop core confidence. When you start out at something, as a complete beginner, and then spend YEARS cultivating an ability, you go through a long and arduous process.
This process consists of multiple things, such as:
These traits, over time, develop into core confidence.
Think about it: if you’ve spent YEARS conquering your inner resistance and you went from being a white belt to being a black belt, how the fuck could you not be confident in other areas of your life?
You need to learn to start a business? That’s a fucking walk in the park. The same skills that you developed from getting a black belt are applicable.
And this doesn’t have to be martial arts, either. Going from a newbie to a master at ANYTHING will set you on the path of developing core confidence.
Learning game, building muscle, starting a business, learning a martial art, mastering meditation…whatever it is, when you go through literally years of struggle and constant progression, you cultivate core confidence.
Of course it fucking takes forever. Evolving from being a whiny little bitch into being a fucking man takes time.
We live in a culture of instant gratification. Everyone wants the results without having to put in any of the work, but do you know what?
You cannot develop core confidence without putting in effort.
Core confidence is something that takes YEARS to develop. I’ve been on the journey of self-improvement for almost a decade now, and I’m JUST STARTING to develop a high level of core confidence.
And even then, it isn’t 100% there all of the time; sometimes I get insecure or down on myself. Such is life. But what’s important is that I’m still persisting; THIS is how you build core confidence! You persist regardless of the circumstances. You don’t give up.
Core confidence takes a long time to develop, yes, but 10 years is going to pass by whether you like it or not, so you might as well spend it doing something good for yourself.
And don’t get discouraged—it isn’t like you’re depressed and insecure for a decade and then suddenly you snap into “core confidence,” mode. In reality, if you start developing your confidence you’ll feel the effects within a month or two.
Your confidence will slowly improve over the months, which will give you motivation to keep going; so don’t give up. Just get started, and you’ll see what I’m talking about.
Self-esteem is an entirely different animal than confidence or core confidence. A lack of self-esteem typically stems from a dysfunctional childhood, whereas a lack of confidence is simply due to a lack of skills.
Like developing confidence, developing self-esteem will take a while. It won’t happen overnight.
There are several things that you can do to develop self-esteem, however, that will greatly speed up the process.
When your self-esteem is low, it’s usually because you have a bunch of negative repressed emotions that you haven’t dealt with.
For example, say that your parents didn’t give you enough love as a child. Maybe they weren’t around very often, or they didn’t pay attention to your needs. This typically creates a deep sense of sadness and a feeling of worthlessness within an individual.
In order to get rid of these negative emotions and thus improve your self-esteem, it is essential to meditate.
Meditation clears your mind of bullshit emotions and paves the way towards presence and happiness.
When you confront the underlying negative emotions causing your low self-esteem, you will accept them and move on. I cannot recommend meditation enough, not just for developing a healthy level of self-esteem, but for literally excelling at LIFE.
Interestingly enough, learning game actually forces you to develop a healthy level of self-esteem. Why is this? Well, because when you learn game, you realize that you’re good enough for any girl out there.
A lot of guys’ self-esteem is tied to women, and they feel like if they can’t even get a girl, let alone a girl that they can be proud of, then they aren’t really that worthwhile.
Game changes all of this, however.
When you follow the principles of seduction that I lay out on my blog, which are meant to make your natural personality attractive, you will come to realize that you ARE enough, and your self-esteem will sky rocket.
A huge part of having a good level of self-esteem is to develop functional relationships with both men and women, where you both grow and benefit.
Eventually, at some point during your self-development journey, you may have to leave old friends behind. Some friends are just too negative to deal with. Some are losers who sap your energy and bring you down. You must leave these people behind.
Replace negative people with positive people in your life.
You’ll eventually start to develop what’s called an emotional ecosystem. This is where you have a whole bunch of different people and activities that feed into your life and create a wonderful emotional state 24/7.
I should probably write more about relationships on my blog (that’s been something I’ve been meaning to do lately), but for now, just follow your gut. If someone makes you feel shitty, don’t hang out with them. Replace them with people who make you feel amazing.
In summary, developing confidence, core confidence, and self-esteem is one of the most difficult things that you will ever do in your entire life.
But, the trade off is incredibly worth it. When you grow your level of confidence, your entire life seems to fall together. Your social life improves, because people naturally flock to you. Your sex life improves, because women are drawn to confident men.
Your financial situation improves, because you have the confidence to follow through with your vision. And most importantly, your emotional health improves, because you’ve taken the time to create a healthy foundation for confidence and self-belief.
If you guys have any questions, comments, or concerns, feel free to leave me a comment below. I hope you all enjoyed the article, and I’ll see you next time.
Jon Anthony is a world renowned dating coach and the founder of Masculine Development, a website specifically dedicated to helping men improve their personal, dating, and financial lives. After years of training men how to attract women, build muscle, and make more money, Jon created the "7 Strategies" program to help kickstart your journey to success. Jon firmly believes that every man should have control over his own life, and he created Masculine Development to share his passion with men who want success in all areas.