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From the Rani Laxmibai of Jhansi to Indra Nooyi, history is filled with women known for their self-confidence and courage. As a strong and powerful group, women have earned for themselves the right to vote, fought in the independence movements, governed nations and been successful leaders at many companies.
Even in your personal lives, whom do you turn to for advice and support when you feel low? Isn’t it mostly the women in your life? That is why, in this blog, we will draw inspiration from these self-confident and independent women around the world, their sayings and their works.
Before delving into the depth of self-confidence in strong women, let’s first understand the three components that contribute to a strong sense of self.
Self-Confidence, Self-Worth, And Self-Esteem
Self-confidence is being sure of oneself; it is a deep-seated belief in one’s capabilities and competence. You acquire self-confidence by recognising what you are skilled in, what you have the aptitude for and having the assurance that you can tackle challenges head-on. Confident women trust their judgement and decision-making abilities. They are comfortable making choices and taking responsibility for the outcomes of such choices. And this attribute is crucial in both personal and professional spheres.
Self-worth is directly associated with recognising one’s inherent value – the feeling that you’re important and valuable irrespective of what you look like, societal expectations, or achievements. Self-worth empowers women to demand and command respect and dignity. It instils the understanding that they deserve to be treated with consideration, and it sets the foundation for healthy self-respect and how others perceive and treat them.
With respect to self-esteem, let’s just say that self-confidence and self-worth are the two fruits of the tree, i.e., self-esteem. Simply put, self-esteem is a broader term that includes self-confidence as well as self-worth. It is your overall perception of yourself. A woman with high self-esteem feels valuable and capable. This positivity radiates across various aspects of life, influencing relationships, career choices, and personal pursuits. It acts as a foundation for mental and emotional well-being. Self-confidence, at times, can be based on external validations, but self-esteem is always based on what you believe internally, and how you perceive yourself.
Importance Of Self-Confidence In Women
Is self-confidence overrated, or is it actually important for modern women in the world? In the present world, where the personal and professional sphere is filled with women in leadership roles, self-confidence is definitely essential.
Let’s see some areas where self-confidence contributes as an important factor:
1. Professional Empowerment
In the contemporary workplace, self-confidence is a key driver of success. Women who exude confidence are more likely to pursue leadership roles, voice their opinions, and contribute meaningfully to their professions. This empowerment not only benefits the individual but also contributes to the overall diversity and innovation within the organisation.
Indra Nooyi, the former CEO of PepsiCo, exemplifies professional empowerment. Throughout her career, Nooyi demonstrated remarkable self-confidence by navigating the challenges of the corporate world. She expanded PepsiCo to enter into the field of healthy beverages, PepsiCo acquired Tropicana under her leadership and, through her confidence, led it to success.
2. Building Resilience
Life is filled with challenges, and self-confident women are better equipped to navigate these obstacles with resilience. Whether facing personal or professional setbacks, confidence acts as a shield, allowing women to bounce back from adversity and emerge stronger.
The right example of resilience coming from self-confidence is Malala Yousafzai, an advocate for girls’ education and Nobel laureate. In the face of Taliban restrictions on girls’ education, Malala started her blog for BBC Urdu to create awareness about girls’ education. Her resilience became globally evident when, in 2012, she survived a murder attempt and co-founded the Malala Fund with her father right after the attack, a non-profit organisation dedicated to advocating for girls’ education worldwide.
3. Positive Role-Modelling
Self-confident women serve as powerful role models for future generations. By embracing their unique qualities and strengths, they inspire others to do the same. This positive reinforcement creates a ripple effect, fostering a culture of self-empowerment and breaking down societal barriers.
As First Lady of the United States and a highly confident woman, Michelle Obama emerged as a role model whose quotes for women inspired generations around the world. She launched the “Let’s Move!” initiative, which aimed at reducing childhood obesity and promoting healthier lifestyles among children. Additionally, she initiated the “Reach Higher” program, encouraging young people to pursue higher education and career aspirations.
4. Healthy Relationships
Self-confidence is foundational to building and maintaining healthy relationships. When women possess a strong sense of self-worth, they are more likely to establish boundaries, communicate effectively, and engage in relationships that uplift and support them.
A notable example of a healthy relationship is Bill and Melinda Gates. Despite being the wife of a very successful businessman for more than 20 years, Melinda has her own name and persona. She is a strong advocate for women’s and girls’ empowerment. The Gates Foundation, founded by the couple, undertakes projects that aim to enhance women’s access to education, healthcare, and economic opportunities. Even after her divorce in 2021, she mentioned that she did not feel her relation healthy any more, creating a very strong and clear boundary.
You have already witnessed examples of a lot of competent, powerful, and strong women, so now, let’s see how you can draw inspiration from their words of wisdom.
Best Inspirational Quotes For Women
Sometimes, the best way to find that inner confidence is to seek encouraging words from someone. It can be through someone you know or simply from the amazing quotes of confident people around you – or ‘confidence quotes’ for short. We have handpicked some powerful and inspirational strong women quotes for women, by women from around the world, that will help you find your inner strength.
Let’s dive in!
“You may shoot me with your words, you may cut me with your eyes, you may kill me with your hatefulness, but still, like air, I’ll rise!” – Maya Angelou
Maya Angelou, a prolific poet and civil rights activist, wrote this powerful verse in her poem “Still I Rise”. The poem addresses resilience in the face of oppression and discrimination. Maya Angelou speaks to the strength that rises above adversity. Despite facing criticism and hatred, the metaphor of rising like air suggests an indomitable spirit that cannot be suppressed, embodying the resilience of the human soul.
“Confidence is everything. Confidence is what makes that simple white tee and jeans look good” – Ciara
Ciara, a singer, dancer, and fashion icon known for her superhit singles “Goodies” and “Lose Control”, shared this perspective in the context of personal style and self-confidence. The quote, one of her most powerful confidence quotes for women, suggests that the key to looking good is not just the outfit but the confidence with which it is worn. Ciara emphasises that confidence can elevate even the simplest attire. It’s a reminder that self-assurance and a positive self-image can enhance the way one carries themselves.
“I may not be there yet, but I am closer than I was yesterday.” – Misty Copeland
Misty Copeland, an American ballet dancer, made history by becoming the first African American female principal dancer with the American Ballet Theatre. In this epitome of self-confidence quotes, Misty Copeland captures the essence of progress and perseverance. The acknowledgement that she may not have reached her ultimate destination conveys a sense of humility and realism. However, the emphasis on being “closer than I was yesterday” reflects a commitment to continuous improvement and incremental steps forward.
“True beauty is the flame of self-confidence that shines from the inside out.” – Tyra Banks
Actress and entrepreneur Tyra Banks expressed this view, emphasising that genuine beauty emanates from inner confidence. Her quotes for women challenge conventional notions of beauty, asserting that self-assurance and confidence are the true sources of a woman’s radiance and attractiveness.
“I am my best work—a series of road maps, reports, recipes, doodles, and prayers from the front lines.” – Audre Lorde
Author and poet Audre Lorde shared this reflection on self-discovery and the journey of personal growth. This quote celebrates the idea that every woman is a unique and evolving masterpiece. It says you are shaped by your own experiences and expressions, and that there is beauty in the complexity of your personal story.
“I am lucky that whatever fear I have inside me, my desire to win is always stronger.” – Serena Williams
Serena Williams, one of the greatest tennis players of all time, shared this insight into her mindset, reflecting on the intersection of fear and determination in the pursuit of success. This perspective offers a profound lesson in resilience and determination. Serena’s words convey the idea that it’s normal to feel fear or uncertainty, even for someone as accomplished as her. However, what ultimately defines her success is not the absence of fear but the strength of her will to succeed.
“The most important relationship you have in life is the one you have with yourself. Because no matter what happens, you will always be with yourself.” – Diane von Furstenberg
Fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg shared this wisdom in the context of self-empowerment and self-love. In one of her finest quotes for women, she underscores the significance of cultivating a positive and nurturing relationship with oneself, emphasising the enduring nature of self-support even in the face of external challenges.
“The most courageous act is still to think for yourself. Aloud” – Coco Chanel
Coco Chanel, the iconic fashion designer, expressed this sentiment in the context of individuality and creative expression. This is one of those immortal quotes for women that encourages women to embrace their unique perspectives and voices, emphasising the bravery of expressing oneself authentically in a world that may impose conformity.
“No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.” – Eleanor Roosevelt
Former First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt spoke these words in the context of personal empowerment and resilience against external judgments. This quote underscores the importance of self-esteem and the idea that your sense of worth is ultimately determined by your own perception, not by others’ opinions.
“You are more powerful than you know; you are beautiful just as you are” – Melissa Etheridge
This beautiful quote is attributed to singer-songwriter Melissa Etheridge in her 1993 album “Yes I Am”. The message in this quote has resonated deeply with many, resonating with its themes of self-worth and strength. It is a reminder that individuals possess inherent strength, resilience, and capabilities that they might underestimate. Sometimes the best way to succeed is to recognise one’s inner power and the untapped potential within.
“True abundance isn’t based on our net worth, it’s based on our self-worth.” – Gabrielle Bernstein
Gabrielle Bernstein, a motivational speaker, life coach, and author, emphasises a crucial distinction between material wealth (net worth) and a deeper, more intrinsic measure of prosperity (self-worth). The quote suggests that true abundance isn’t solely determined by external markers such as financial success or possessions. Instead, it is rooted in your perception of your own worth.
“Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else” – Judy Garland
Judy Garland, a legendary actress and singer, shared this wisdom, urging individuals to embrace their uniqueness. This quote is a call to authenticity, inspiring women to value their individuality. It emphasises that being true to oneself is of greater importance than trying to emulate others, promoting self-worth through self-acceptance.
“Think like a queen. A queen is not afraid to fail. Failure is another stepping stone to greatness” – Oprah Winfrey
Oprah Winfrey, a media mogul and philanthropist, often encourages a positive mindset and resilience in the face of challenges. This quote encourages women to adopt a regal mindset, associating failure not with defeat but as a necessary step towards achieving greatness. Oprah tries to instil confidence in embracing setbacks as opportunities for growth.
“Too many people overvalue what they are not and undervalue what they are” – Malcolm S. Forbes
Malcolm Forbes, an American entrepreneur and publisher, speaks about the common tendency of individuals to focus on perceived shortcomings or qualities they lack. People may often place excessive importance on external standards or qualities they believe they should possess, leading to a decreased valuation of their existing attributes. It reminds individuals to reassess their self-perception and recognise the value of their unique qualities, experiences, and achievements.
“Your self-worth is determined by you. You don’t have to depend on someone to tell you who you are” – Beyoncé
Beyoncé, a global icon in music and entertainment, often addresses themes of empowerment and self-love in her work. This quote emphasises the autonomy of self-worth. The phrase “tell you who you are” encourages women to define their own values, not seeking external validation. Beyoncé advocates for self-empowerment and a strong sense of self that is internally anchored.
“Wanting to be someone else is a waste of the person you are” – Marilyn Monroe
Marilyn Monroe’s quote underscores the importance of embracing one’s individuality and authenticity. The desire to be someone else implies a lack of appreciation for one’s unique qualities, experiences, and identity. The use of the term “waste” suggests that the potential and value inherent in an individual remain unused when they try to replicate someone else.
“Life is not easy for any of us. But what of that? We must have perseverance and, above all, confidence in ourselves. We must believe that we are gifted for something, and that this thing, at whatever cost, must be attained” – Marie Curie
Marie Curie, a pioneering physicist and chemist, faced numerous challenges as a woman in the male-dominated scientific community. This quote reflects her resilience and belief in self-confidence. Curie’s words underscore the inevitability of life’s difficulties but emphasise the importance of perseverance and self-confidence. The idea is to recognise your unique gifts and relentlessly pursue what you truly believe in, regardless of the challenges encountered.
“Talk to yourself like you would to someone you love” – Brené Brown
Brené Brown is a research professor and best-selling author known for her work on vulnerability, shame, and empathy. This quote emphasises the concept of self-compassion, encouraging individuals to use a tone and language in their internal dialogue that is as gentle and supportive as they would use with someone they care about. It acknowledges that self-talk plays a significant role in mental well-being.
“I’ve finally stopped running away from myself. Who else is there better to be?” – Goldie Hawn
Goldie Hawn, an Academy Award-winning actress, suggests a personal journey toward self-acceptance in this quote. The decision to stop running away from oneself implies a recognition and acceptance of one’s true identity, flaws, and strengths. “Who else is there better to be?” conveys a sense of contentment and an understanding that being authentic and true to oneself is the most fulfilling state.
“The most beautiful thing a woman can wear is confidence” – Blake Lively
Blake Lively, an actress and fashion influencer, said this in a 2011 interview with Marie Claire magazine. She expressed this idea in the realm of beauty and self-worth. This quote underscores the importance of confidence as an essential element of beauty. It encourages women to prioritise self-assurance and inner strength, recognising that these qualities radiate true beauty more than any external adornment.
“The minute you learn to love yourself, you won’t want to be anyone else” – Rihanna
In this quote, Rihanna suggests that self-love is not only a positive mindset but also a transformative force. Learning to love oneself implies a journey of acceptance, where you have to embrace both strengths and imperfections. The phrase “you won’t want to be anyone else” conveys a sense of contentment with one’s own identity. It speaks to the idea that as individuals cultivate self-love, the inclination to compare oneself to others diminishes.
“Attitude is everything” – Diane Von Furstenberg
Diane Furstenberg shares this perspective on the significance of attitude in shaping one’s experiences. This quote underscores the impact of attitude on one’s approach to life. Von Furstenberg suggests that a positive and determined attitude can significantly influence outcomes and contribute to personal success.
“A girl should be two things: who and what she wants” – Coco Chanel
Chanel expressed her views on individuality and self-expression in this quote. Her quote emphasises the importance of authenticity and self-determination. It encourages women to define themselves on their terms, embracing both their identity and aspirations without external constraints.
“I work very hard, and I play very hard. I’m grateful for life. And I live it—I believe life loves the liver of it” – Maya Angelou
Maya Angelou, a renowned poet and civil rights activist, shared this perspective on the joy of living life to the fullest. The quote encourages women to approach life with a balance of hard work and enjoyment, emphasising gratitude and a vibrant engagement with life’s experiences.
In this blog, we’ve discovered the transformative power of words, specifically through quotes that resonate with the essence of self-confidence for women. From Maya Angelou’s encouragement to rise from defeat to Oprah Winfrey’s reminder that strength emerges from struggle, these quotes illuminate the path to self-assurance. But these quotes are mere words – you have to take action to incorporate them into your daily life, which, by the way, is very easy.
Choose a quote or two that resonates with you; make that your personal mantra and repeat it to yourself once daily. You can also read books, blogs or poems written by the authors of your favourite quotes to find more inspiration. Remember, you are worthy, resilient, and capable of achieving greatness – so, let your self-confidence shine brightly.
In conclusion, let’s recollect the words of Michelle Obama: “There is no limit to what we, as women, can accomplish”.