Chin up. Shoulders back. Look them in the eye. Have confidence. Whether you listened or not, your mom was trying to steer you in the right direction—even if that direction was out of the basement and into your own apartment. In fact, a 2012 study from Australia’s University of Melbourne found that men who are confident in their abilities earn more than guys who have the same competence level but lower self-esteem. Those with the bigger cojones also reported more frequent promotions.
What Mom didn’t teach you (hopefully) is that more confidence also equals more sex, more fun...more everything, really. Ah, but what if you’re not the kind of guy who naturally carries his balls around in a wheelbarrow? Here are a few high-stress situations and tips for how to tap the keg of confidence quickly—without needing a few drinks under your belt first.
In the Moment
We’ve been telling you the importance of stretching for years, but maybe this time you’ll finally listen. “We conducted research about how nonverbal displays could make you feel more powerful,” says Andy Yap, co-author of the study “Power Posing: Brief Nonverbal Displays Affect Neuroendocrine Levels and Risk Tolerance.” Subjects who held outstretched poses showed a surge in testosterone and a decrease in the production of the stress hormone cortisol. Before your next high-pressure approach, take a big stretch and hold it for about one minute— your confidence will expand as well.