The Art of Being a Lady: How to Speak with Confidence

The following statement may come as no surprise to you, but in our society ladies have far less authority than men and are typically not taken as seriously.

Now, I am much more pro "man-should-wear-the-pants-in-the-family" concept than the average woman, but I'm also wise enough to understand that being a lady is not in any way constraining, repressing or stifling. A woman can {and should} strive to be the very best version of herself – to be a true lady.

What exactly does it mean to be a true lady, you ask? Let's refresh our memory with one of the first articles in The Art of Being a Lady series: A lady finds strength in being a woman and can compose herself, convey authority and elicit respect in any company or situation without losing her integrity or compromising her values.

Perhaps my personality is to blame, but my natural tendency is to stay reserved, especially in an unfamiliar situation {the workplace, for example}. Yet, that is the very opposite of how a lady should conduct herself. So in an effort to help you and me both, I've analyzed some of my own behavior patterns and came up with five points on how to speak with confidence.

Eliminate the fluffy nonsense.  Words such as um, like, yeah, well, I think, I believe, I guess, whatever and maybe dilute the power of your message and make you look like a thirteen-year-old girl. Eliminating filler words is one of the simplest changes you can make for people to start taking you seriously. Think about it, which of the following sentences would you be more likely to take into consideration: "Um, like, I don't really think that's, like, a good idea or whatever" or "You have a valid point, but have you considered {fill-in-the-blank}?" Phrasing your speech in a way that makes it sound like you know what you're talking about {even if you sort of don't} makes a world of a difference in how people respond to you.Carry yourself like a lady. In an effort to not come across as arrogant, our natural tendency is to take up as little space as possible, which translates into slumped shoulders, head down, averted eye contact, fidgety behavior. That is a recipe for disaster, friends. Often, body language is more important than what actually comes out of your mouth, so stand up straight, establish eye contact and take up as much space as possible {and I don't mean that in a literal sense}.Educate yourself. This goes without saying, but please don't open your mouth if you don't know what you're talking about. Also, don't be the subject of the following {rather unladylike, but I don't care} quote: "Opinions are like farts; Everyone has one, but it doesn't mean you should let yours out." Dress the part. Oh, this is a fun one! I'm not here to tell you how to dress, but for the love of humanity, if you're wearing a miniskirt and UGG boots and wondering why people don't take you seriously, just give up.Don't take yourself too seriously. This tidbit of advice may seem paradoxical, but take it from someone who does tend to take herself too seriously {I'm working on it!}. You cannot appear confident without learning to laugh at yourself or to make light of a situation. 

Dress, Dillard's // Shoes, Heels.com // Necklace, c/o Elena Fomina Design

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9 Comments

  1. Pingback: Paris State of Mind » Simple Pleasures

  2. In college I had to take public speaking and it was one of my favorite classes. Our teacher was an older gentleman (imagine the best grandfather figure imaginable) and he gave all us females great advice without sounding condescending. He said females tend to do raise their voice at the end of sentences, which implies that you’re asking a question even if you’re making a statement. It’s something I try to watch out for now, especially since I can easily fall into the care taking type role.

    Finally, I love the advice on posture. My grandmother was ruthless with making me sit straight as a child and it has paid off over the years. People think I’m much taller than 5’3 and just the other day this incredibly cute man at my work came over to me when I was sitting in a communal area and said “You have amazing posture. You’re like a statue!”

    • Thank you so much for reading and for your support, Tamara! I’m glad I was able to {slightly} brighten your day with my sarcasm, because, frankly, that’s a rare occasion. {Let’s just say not everyone finds me so funny.}

      Stay tuned for more posts in The Art of Being a Lady series! XOXO

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