How do I (as an introvert) become more confident?

Someone posted this question during my LinkedIn Live interview with career coaches Naishadh Gadani and Karalyn Brown this week, and I would like to share my thoughts on it.

I have heard many variations of this question from fellow introverts:

“How can I become more confident?”

“What strategies, what tips and techniques can you share that can turn me from shy and tongue-tied in front of strangers to someone who can communicate smoothly?”

The most helpful answer I can give is this:

Confidence comes from competence – and competence is the by-product of experience.

When you know what you are talking about (because you have spent hours researching, writing, analysing and yes, overthinking it from every possible angle) …

When you have had enough conversations and interactions, ones that flowed smoothly and ones where you stumbled and mumbled your way through and felt frustrated that once again you didn’t manage to articulate what you meant to …

When you have showed up enough times (hosting, facilitating, speaking, coaching, interviewing, writing) and received enough feedback (including crickets) to get a good idea of what interests people …

The compound effect of all that work, is how you become a more confident version of your introverted self.