How To Fake Confidence When You Don't Think You're All That Great

It's absolutely possible.

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Meeting people online makes everyone a little bit nervous. Yes, even me. But when you're a fat woman, online dating can be even more nerve-wracking.  That is because no matter how "accurate" the pictures you post online may be, you're terrified that you're going to be rejected for being fat.

That's fine. I mean, it's not, but it makes sense that you feel that way. We don't live in a world where fat people — fat women, in particular — are expected to feel good about themselves. Which leads to a problem.


RELATED: 5 Reasons Why It Feels So Darn Hard To Love Yourself Sometimes

If going on dates is all about having confidence, how can you be confident with low self-esteem? The most obvious answer is also the most impossible: learning how to love yourself.



Yeah, okay, poof, there, magic, I have an impressive self-love and ego. I am so confident that it is amazing I can get anything done given how many times in a day I have to stop to pat myself on the back for my greatness... Yup. That was sarcasm.

If you are a person with low self-esteem, you know that learning how to love yourself is a dangerous truism. You can't transform into a confident person overnight. 

Self-love is a process. For some of us it's a journey with a lot of backsliding for each inch we manage to creep forward. But that doesn't mean you can't be confident with low self-esteem.

See, there's another cliché that's actually helpful when it comes to stuff like this: Fake it until you make it. You don't need to walk around with Beyoncé-style level of confidence, but pretend you have your stuff together.


Pretend you love the way you look. Pretend you are a person of value who deserves good things in her. Pretend this stuff even when you don't believe it.

It's not forever. You don't need to do this all the time, but when you're going out on a first date and your nerves and insecurities are taking over, that's when you pretending your ego rivals Kanye's can be really helpful.

RELATED: 6 Signs You Love Yourself Enough To Love Someone Else

I used to pregame with a drink or two before a first date to try and dull the concern that I wasn't thin enough, pretty enough, or good enough to deserve love. But the booze just made me even more insecure. Now, I pregame with shots of pure, 100 percent proof pretend confidence. 


Let your fake bravado protect you on your date, and let it help you make the best impression you can. Hell, you might even wind up having fun in the process.

Remember to let it go. The best thing about faking confidence is that once you get home and the door slams behind you, you can feel free to let it go. When you are just pretending to have your stuff together, you feel way less guilt about being like "back to it," whipping off your Spanx, turning on a marathon of Snapped and eating too many Oreos.

The funny secret about pretending you're the greatest when you go out on a date is the long-term effect it can have on you. Pretend long enough, and it starts to feel real.



Will you suddenly one day wake up no longer caring that you are fat and worrying about how other people will perceive you? No. But you might find that you are less hard on yourself. You might find yourself excited to go on a date instead of dreading the outcome. 

I know of what I speak because it's something that's happened to me. It's amazing what a little self-deception can do. 

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Rebecca Jane Stokes is a writer living in Brooklyn, New York with her cat, Batman. Her work focuses on relationships, pop culture and news. For more of her work, check out her Tumblr.