Jumping from college to career can be intimidating.
From the dress code and the email etiquette to responsibilities and schedule maintenance, there is a lot to learn when jumping into your first “big girl job” that they don’t teach you in school. The most important? Being confident at work.
Maybe you’re juggling these new expectations, or maybe you’re a corporate veteran who has it down pat but still finds herself holding her ideas back in meetings. What can you do to boost your confidence at work and take a step forward for your career?
1. They believe in you, you should believe in you
At the end of the day, they hired you. You’re the one who wrote that killer cover letter, who kicked butt at the interview, and who dressed to impress on your first day. They picked you, they believed in you, and they still do.
When you’re feeling down, shy, scared, or anxious try reminding yourself that you are there because they believe in you… so you should believe in you.
2. You worked to be there, you deserve it
Everyone has their own path, but regardless of where you started you deserve to be where you are now. School, internships, projects, presentations, extra-curriculars, networking, side-hustles… whatever you did to put yourself at the front you worked hard at it. Remember that.
3. Strike a Power Pose
Going into an intimidating meeting? Want to start your first day on the right foot? About to pitch a new idea or negotiate a better salary? Before you walk through that door, strike a power pose.
As silly as you may feel, hitting a power pose for 30 seconds before you do something that you want to excel at can help boost your confidence and energy levels which could help you succeed.
Try this: Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and put your hands on your hips. Look straight ahead. Hold this for 10 seconds. Next, put your arms out to the side with open palms and hold that for 10 seconds. Now put both of your arms above your head up high with your hands in fists. Hold for 10 seconds and focus on your breathing.
4. Speak up
Practice makes perfect! Practice speaking up in other parts of your life, then bring it to work. Having a dinner with your significant other’s parents? This can be intimidating just as meetings at work can be. Set a goal for yourself to bring up 3 topics about something you experienced within the last 2 weeks. Starting conversations can boost confidence and create the habit of speaking up around intimidating people.
5. Dress for success
When you dress nice, you feel nice. What is your power outfit? Take a day this week and dress up – put on your cutest blouse, your most killer shoes, and a flattering skirt or pair of slacks. Do your hair and your makeup, make yourself look and feel good. Then, notice how it makes you feel throughout the day. Do you feel better when talking to people? Do you feel like you belong where you are?
These small baby steps can put you on the right path to success and confidence at work.