5 Things Serial Killers Can Teach Us About Confidence
Have you ever wondered why characters like Hannibal Lecter are so compelling? Almost despite ourselves, we're drawn to them regardless of their deeply evil nature. But they have a charisma that's born from an unshakeable sense of self-confidence. It allows them to feel free to be themselves with apologies to no one. Luckily, you can develop the
Here are some of the things they do that you can learn from (without having to actually kill someone).
Find a Role Model
Joe Carroll, smooth-talking villain of the hit TV show The Following , developed a cult of admirers devoted to carrying on his "work". Having obsessively studied Carroll's actions, they planned their moves based on how he would act in a particular situation, including adopting his signature fascination with Edgar Allan Poe.
We all know someone who seems to have the confidence we yearn for. Pay attention to how they interact with people. The next time you're in a social situation where you may be feeling a bit uncomfortable, ask yourself what he or she would do in your shoes. Learning from others is a smart way to gain from their experience and avoid your own trial-and-error efforts.
Look the Part
Remember the first time Clarice Starling met Hannibal Lecter in
The Silence of the Lambs
? How he stood with perfect posture, arms relaxed comfortably at his side? He looked her in the eye and spoke in a low but assured tone. Even though Lecter was on the wrong side of those bars, there was
It's difficult to feel confident when your shoulders are slumped and your gaze is cast down at the ground. Even
"Fake It Till You Make It"
In true sociopathic fashion, the title character of
Dexter is a prime example of the concept that you can effect change from the outside in. It sounds counterintuitive, but if you smile, offer a firm handshake and converse naturally when you meet people, your brain will sync up with your actions and you'll internalize the sense of confidence you've been "acting out."
Recognize That You're Not Alone
Fortunately, most people's insecurities don't reach that level. But it's helpful to understand that nearly everyone is feeling nervous and uncertain about something. Accepting your feelings as part of
Build on Your Successes
A classic characteristic of serial killers is collecting "souvenirs." The Gorgomon who long eluded Dr. Temperance "Bones" Brennan used the
You can accomplish the same thing in a much more civil way. Keep a list of all your achievements in social situations. Write it down if you like, or it can stay in your memory banks. Either way, it's ready for review whenever you need to give yourself a pep talk. Use what's worked in the past to continue building your confidence and self-esteem.
While we think of them as serial killers, they may prefer the term "misunderstood." One thing that's not hard to understand is that they can teach us all something about having self-confidence.
David Morin is a serial entrepreneur and the co-founder of a multi-million dollar electronics company. Today, he is a business advisor and a
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