Confidence. You’ve either got it or you haven’t. Or so we’re told… In fact, confidence is one of those emotions which you can actually fake quite well when you’re feeling pretty wobbly and insecure. Ironically, any successes you achieve while acting ‘as if’ you’re the most confident woman in the world will actually boost your confidence in the short, medium, even long-term. At root, confidence means trusting yourself, putting faith in your ability, believing in you. Confidence will have been boosted (or shattered) by your childhood experiences (loving parents – or not; sibling rivalry – or only loneliness; being a swot or truant at school). Achievement at all levels – academic, sporting, sexual, physical, at work – is what we measure confidence by usually. By the time we grow up we might seem a quivering jelly of insecurity, or an iron maiden of positive thinking and derring-do. The truth is, even inside the most capable, strident, happy-go-lucky person there’s probably a bit of a shy flower. And the quietest one in any group might well be the bravest or strongest when up against it. You can boost your confidence a million-fold by eliminating all those nagging put-downs you repeat in your head about your looks, your ability, your sexiness, your achievements, your essential nature. We’re so frightened of being confident, of believing in ourselves, we often make a mockery of our abilities to keep other people happy. Instead, try patting yourself on the back for what you have done, for who you are, for what you want and how you do things – and your confidence will begin to soar. And if other people don’t like it? That’s their problem… not yours.