The Confidence Conundrum: Navigating the Double Standard Women Face

In the labyrinth of the professional and corporate worlds, confidence stands tall as the beacon guiding one's journey. But what happens when this beacon is dimmed or misinterpreted by societal biases? As much as we wish it weren't so, women often find themselves navigating through a landscape where confidence is a double-edged sword, sharpened by gender expectations, differing perceptions and societal norms.


Harvard Business Review delved into this phenomenon, indicating how ‘confidence’, or a male perception of it, can be weaponised against women. A confident man is lauded as a go-getter, a leader, a visionary. But when a woman dares to exude the same level of assurance, she's often deemed abrasive, arrogant, or worse, labelled with the dreaded "bossy" tag. It's a perplexing dichotomy that's deeply ingrained in our cultural psyche and incredibly difficult for professional women to navigate.


Forbes chimes in, debunking the myth of the confidence gap while shedding light on the undeniable reality of a double standard. Yes, the gap itself might not be as vast as once thought, but the expectations placed on women to successfully traverse this terrain are undeniably heavier.


So, what's a woman to do in this confidence conundrum? How does she navigate perception versus reality, societal expectations versus personal aspirations, having confidence as opposed to demonstrating it? Let’s flip it. Given that women in corporations and businesses positively impact the bottom line, perhaps it’s time for men to address their perceptions and biases. Given that, according to research, women are good for business, isn’t it time we reframe this issue of perceived confidence, or lack thereof, in women? Isn’t it time to recognize that measurable outcomes trump perceptions?

About Sally

As a former international opera singer, Sally Wilson knows a thing or two about being at the top of your field. And she’s discovered first-hand what it feels like to step away from the spotlight and lose your identity.

Through coaching, Sally helps her clients let go of their self-sabotaging beliefs and discover freedom, joy and fulfillment. As an accredited TRTP™ practitioner, Sally uses evidence-based practices to create changes that are quick, safe and lasting.

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