Tips to boost confidence right now, because you're awesome

Like finding the perfect pair of jeans or getting to inbox zero, confidence is a pretty elusive thing. But without it, it's all too easy to fall down the rabbit hole of self-doubt and negativity. And this not only hurts us on a personal level (anxietydepression, membership to the lonely heart's club), but it can also put a damper on ourprofessional success. That's why we made it our mission to find self-confidence shortcuts.

We searched high and low for the 19 best ways to power past insecurities and doubts, and we have to say: they're pretty darn awesome. Consider these tips your booster rockets to soar over the toughest situations—whether it’s rocking a first date or acing an interview—with swagger.

1. Spritz on a scent. 

Your favorite fragrance does more than make you smell oh-so-nice. As it turns out, it can actually make you confident, too. One study suggests that not only can a fragrance inspire confidence in men, but the more a gent likes the fragrance, the more confident he might feel  . Another study found that 90 percent of women feel more confident while wearing a scent than those who go fragrance-free  .

2. Straighten up. 

Mom was right: The next time you find yourself slumping in your chair or slouching your shoulders, sit up straight! According to research, doing so can lead to more confidence in your own thoughts  . Plus, sitting with good posture can keep both your self-esteem and mood lifted  . Try it: Experts recommend opening up your chest and keeping your head level to look—and feel—assured and poised.

3. Give me a “V”!

Though generally a part of a cheerleader's repertoire, throwing your hands up in the air is a pretty spectacular power pose. While you can't bust this move out anytime anywhere, just two minutes in a wide stance with your hands in the air will give you an instant confidence boost—you might even want to invent your own pep rally cheer. (No, really. See number 10.)

4. Nod along.

Nodding your head isn't just good for signaling "yes" or warming up in a group fitness class. Research suggests that the up-and-down movement may actually improve confidence in your thoughts, so feel free to nod away whenever you need an extra boost  . Just think of this as a way of signaling, "yes we can" to your brain.

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5. Jam out.

Cranking up the tunes can do great things for your mind and body. (Count 'em! There are at least 20 health benefits associated with it.) And now, recent research suggests that listening to music may lead to feeling more powerful  . To paraphrase popstar Meghan Trainor, it's all about that bass (no treble): listening to heavy-bass songs promotes more feelings of power than the low-bass songs.

6. Deal with failure. 

The great Michael Jordan once said, "I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed." And it's that kind of mentality—being able to live with failure and learn from it—that helps you build self-confidence, says executive coach Marshall Goldsmith, Ph.D., author of What You Got Here Won't Get You There. 

7. Be a pal.

Fact: Life would be way less fun without friends. Not only do besties provide impromptu dance parties, secret handshakes, and giggles galore, but they also improve both self-confidence and self-worth, according to the Mayo Clinic. (Check out these 16 tips on how to make new friends and keep the old.) And the next time you need a boost, reach out to your inner circle for confirmation that you're having a good hair day.

8. Snap a #selfie. 

Though selfies get a bad rap for leaning toward the narcissistic end of the confidence spectrum, they may actually be a good thing. Sixty-five percent of teen girls surveyed by TODAY/AOL said that seeing their faces on a social platform actually makes them feel more confident. Consider this the green light to snap, filter, and post—just keep in mind that the survey isn't super scientific, so it may not be everyone's best line of defense when it comes to a confidence boost. But, hey, a flattering pic never hurts!

9. Embrace your superstitions.

Go ahead and rock your lucky jersey or favorite charm bracelet. Science suggests that having these kinds of tokens leads to improved performance and setting loftier goals—all by boosting your self-confidence  . And the confidence link doesn't just exist with physical objects. Performing rituals, like rocking out to Led Zeppelin before hitting the race trail, for example, is also believed to increase confidence as well as decrease anxiety.

10. Break a sweat.

Nope, we'll never get tired of saying it: Exercise is good for you! Apart from the many, many physical benefits, it also does a mind good. Case in point: One study suggests working out regularly can lead to more confidence (and less stress)  . And yet more research notes that exercise in general leads to a confidence boost (independent of how hard you worked out) . Translation: What seems to matter—as far as confidence goes—is whether you break a sweat in general, not how strenuous your session is.

For a list of 19 confidence-boosters, go to

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