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Chapter 12:    Feign Confidence

Similar to Role Play described in Chapter 27, one very simple technique that you can employ at any time to get you performing in The Zone is the technique of Feigning Confidence.  With this technique, you simply forget about any uncertainty that may exist inside of you, and just pretend to be confident.

“Well I’m not confident!” you might say.

That’s okay!  Just try the next exercise…

Exercise:        If I was confident…

Ask yourself the following:

1. How would I stand if I was confident?
Stand confidently for a few minutes right now!

2. How would I walk if I was confident?
Walk confidently for a few minutes right now!

3. How would I move my body if I was confident?
Move your body confidently for a few minutes right now!

4. How would my voice sound if I was confident?
Speak confidently for a few minutes right now! (say anything – read the text from this page aloud for example

5. How would I expect other people to react to me if I was confident?
Think about this for a few minutes right now!

6. How would it feel being confident?
Think about this for a few minutes right now!

Asking yourself these questions and going through the different parts of this exercise can help to focus your mind on how great it would be if you were confident.  This starts to create a positive thought process.  The knock-on effect is that if you truly focus on answering these questions, you can actually end up being confident!

In addition, you might like to try adopting the following 5 Tips for Feigning Confidence.  You may be amazed at the power of Feigning Confidence, and how it can affect not only your performing life, but your social interactions as well.

5 Tips for Feigning Confidence

Tip 1: Posture:
Sit or stand with an erect posture – relaxed, with a straight spine, your chest up and shoulders back. Your head should be directly on top of your spine, effortlessly balanced on a relaxed neck, and not slumped forwards or to one side of you.

Tip 2: Eye contact
Briefly make eye contact with other people or members of your audience if appropriate.  You don’t need to try to stare them down, simply show them that you are an open person, willing to communicate.

Tip 3: Smile
If appropriate in your performance situation, a smile can go a long way to making your audience feel at ease.  Their comfort level is then automatically directed back to you, and can give you a sense of security.

Tip 4: Be playful
Being a little light-hearted or playful in non-performing situations can have the knock-on effect of making any performance situation seem less of a ‘big deal’, helping your confidence.

Tip 5: Remember
Remember who you are and where you come from.  Be proud of your achievements thus far.  Celebrate your uniqueness.  In addition, remember that you have a worth.  You have a value, and in performing you are adding value not only to your own life, but the lives of others.

You can begin practising Feigning Confidence by entering any situation where there are people present that you have previously not met before – social gatherings, cafés, and shops are ideal locations. 

Respectful confidence

An important note here.  There is a significant difference between confidence and arrogance.  Be respectful and charming – that’s confidence! 

By demonstrating respectful confidence, feigned or not, you communicate to others that you have a high personal self-esteem, self-worth, and value.  Other people, whether they be audience members or locals at a bar or nightclub, automatically sense this.  Knowing that you are viewed as having a high value can reinforce your confidence.  In this way, it doesn’t matter if your original confidence was feigned or not, as within a short space of time, you will be experiencing real confidence!

Whether you are entering a performance or non-performance situation, remember that if you are not feeling confident, all you have to do to achieve confidence is pretend! 

You can even use a Cue Card to remind yourself of this powerful technique.

Exercise:        Feigning it

The next time you are at a public gathering or in a performing situation, experiment with Feigning Confidence.  You may like to think the words “Feign Confidence”, ask yourself the questions from the ‘If I was confident…’ exercise, or, you may like to concentrate on one or several of the ‘5 Tips for Feigning Confidence’ given above.  Note how Feigning Confidence can induce real confidence.

What I could do to Feign Confidence in a performing or social situation:





How Feigning Confidence helped me in a performing or social situation:






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