Yes You Can! 6 Ways To Communicate Confidence When You’re Nervous


We’ve all been there: stuck in a big meeting knowing you’re going to be asked about the last week’s figures, or at a lunch with not only your manager but your manager’s manager. You want to show that you’re confident and in control (even if you’re feeling less-than). Career Girl Daily’s easiest ways to communicate this are:

Maintain eye contact. 

Don’t look away because you’re nervous; holding someone’s gaze communicates that you see them as an equal, and you’re comfortable speaking with them (even if it’s someone intimidating). Make sure that you’re not looking down at the floor when you’re speaking and find people’s eyes around the table.

Sit up straight. 

Don’t slouch! Square your shoulders and lift your chin to show you’re engaged. If this is difficult, try leaning back slightly in your chair. Be careful with this, though; it’s important you don’t look like you’re relaxing!

Don’t fidget.

Picking at your sweater, nail-biting, playing with jewellery—STOP IT! You’re putting your nerves on display.

Strike a pose. 

Power pose, that is. Take a minute to power pose in the bathroom if you can’t in the meeting itself; research says that doing these for a few minutes beforehand will make you feel more confident!

Speak slowly. 

Getting nervous and speeding up speech can sometimes go hand in hand. Try to pace yourself, and don’t try to say too much too fast. Rambling is a surefire giveaway that you’re no comfortable.


Sometimes the best way to relax is to feel you’re among friends. Tell a coworker how much you enjoyed their presentation, the funny clip they sent around, or their new idea. Remember, everyone gets nervous—doing this not only makes you look like a team player but also makes it more likely that someone will back you in this way.


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  1. Great advice, thanks! Personally I’ve always been very self conscious of my shakey hands when I’m nervous. Whilst in the past this would hold me back when doing big presentations I now just work with it- I try not to hold anything and ensure that my voice is animated to draw attention away from the shaking. Everyone gets nervous after all!

  2. Thanks for your advice! I have a big meeting coming up. The person I’m meeting called it ‘just grab a cup of coffee’, but I know it means more!

  3. Great article, also useful when we have an oral presentation (job interview or anything else)

  4. I always fidget with stuff because it’s so hard to keep my hands still. i definitely have to work on that. thanks for sharing, these are really helpful =o)

  5. Awesome tips! I have such a hard time with the eye contact and speaking slowly…just have to keep putting myself in positions that force me to get over my fears!

  6. Making eye contact is so so so important! I make sure to do it no matter what circumstance I’m in.

    Totally agree with the posture too – mine’s terrible, definitely something that I have to work on x

    Katina |

  7. Great pointers! Not sure if this is common, but when I’ve been speaking with someone for a while I suddenly become very self-conscious, and then nervous. Then I stop knowing which eye to look at, and even looking between their eyes feel very uncomfortable for me.

  8. It went very well! Keeping fingers crossed that I’ll get to move onto the next stage of the interview process. :)

  9. Great tips! A few deep breaths have always helped me as well. My husband developed a funny but less noticeable sign of nervousness when he was a teenager: he started chewing imaginary gum!

  10. Great advice for everyone despite their gender and I and guess most of us can relate to the scenario described at the start of your blog. Coming from Scotland and now living and working in England I know that my speech speeds up considerably when nervous and excited. I generally control this through my breathing, awareness and focus.
    Great Read and one I will add to my links.
    Regards Stewart

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