How to Gain Confidence and Score More Dates as a Gay Woman

You’re a Wonder, WomanEvil doesn't stand a chance

Made popular by Amy Cuddy’s riveting TED talk, a power pose is a two-minute stance that boosts your testosterone (which helps usher in confidence) and lowers your cortisol (the stress hormone). One power pose, the Wonder Woman, entails taking a wide stance, with your hands on your hips, and your back and chest straight and powerful. Head up, chin up.

Another is the “I just won a race” pose, where your hands are over your head in fists of glory, and your head is up toward the sky. This is harder to hold for two whole minutes, but I find it more effective than Wonder Woman, for whatever reason. It’s more glorious, perhaps.

Action plan: Strike a power pose before you have to do something nerve-wracking for an extra dose of “boost juice,” as nobody calls it—a tough conversation? Asking your boss for more vacation time? Presentation? First date? Even if you don’t feel transformed into a superhero, you’ll still be slightly calmer, and perceived by others as having more bravado.

 

Stand Up, er, StraightGettyImages-576601672

If you can’t power pose for some reason, at the very least, you should stand up or sit up straight. Our tendency is to slouch or hunch over, looking down at our phones, which makes us not only look defeated but feel defeated as well. Improving our posture, even just for a few minutes, boosts our confidence and our moods.

Action plan: What does good posture look like? It’s pretty simple: Open your chest, keep your shoulders back, and keep your head and gaze at eye level or slightly above. This expansion might feel slightly awkward at first because we’re so used to folding in on ourselves, but if you keep at it, you’ll see the rewards. Research shows that recovering alcoholics were less likely to relapse if they had an expansive versus a slouched posture. It also helps us take initiative and even increases our pain tolerance.  

 

You Look Good, KidGettyImages-583720642

It’s no secret that when we look good, we FEEL good about ourselves. This doesn’t mean you have to break out the fancy Tevas anytime you leave the house, but if you’re feeling a bit lackluster, taking some extra time to be well-groomed will definitely improve your mood. It’s up to you to define what “groomed” means to you, however. Is it regular haircuts and bow ties and shiny shoes? Is it a spritz of perfume or cologne? Is it wearing a favorite shirt or good-luck charm? Whatever routines, self-care, or accouterments make you feel attractive are the ones that should come into play when you want to give yourself a confidence advantage.

Action plan: Make an effort to look good every day this week, even if you work from home and only have to impress your labradoodle. Pay extra care to your appearance and note how it affects your self-esteem. If you’re feeling uninspired, go out and buy a new clothing item or lucky charm. Bonus points if it’s weird or stands out, because that will help you attract attention (more on that at a later date).