Emotion Thesaurus Entry: Confidence/Pride

· Shoulders back, chest out, chin lifted
· Giving a half-shrug and a grin that conveys agreement or secret knowledge
· Flirting
· Comfortable being in close proximity to others or initiating contact
· Telling jokes, adding to or steering a conversation
· Hosting an event or activity (a BBQ, getting the guys together for a football game)
· Bragging, obsessively talking about an achievement or material object (winning a game, a new car, etc)
· Reacting with anger or jealousy if one’s reputation is impugned
· Doing or saying things outside of the norm without anxiety or concern
· Leaning in to talk or listen
· Maintaining good eye contact
· Lots of physical contact, touchy-feely
· Running the hands through the hair, flipping one’s hair
· Assuming a pose that’s sexy, appealing, or draws attention to one’s best attributes
· Wearing clothes that are flashy or dramatic…

Win your readers’ hearts by tailoring your character’s emotional responses so they’re compelling, credible, and realistic.

If you struggle with writing emotions like so many writers do, you’ll be happy to know that this sample has been expanded into book form. The full list of physical, internal, and mental cues for this and 74 other emotions can be found in The Emotion Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to Character Expression. For more information on this bestselling book and where it can be found, please visit our bookstore.

And the news gets better: we’ve added 15 entries to this collection, including grief, lust, and self-loathing. To access these, simply visit our online library at One Stop For Writers. There, you’ll find all 90 entries from our popular Emotion Thesaurus, which have been updated and enhanced to provide even greater value. Users also enjoy the flexibility of cross-referenced material for easy searchability across all of our completed thesaurus collections. Interested in viewing a sample? Register for free at One Stop, and see what this innovative online library can do for your storytelling.

About ANGELA ACKERMAN

Angela is an international speaker and bestselling author who loves to travel, teach, empower writers, and pay-it-forward. She also enjoys dreaming up new tools and resources for One Stop For Writers, a library built to help writers elevate their storytelling.

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8 Responses to Emotion Thesaurus Entry: Confidence/Pride

  1. I love all of the examples provided for all of the emotions. They certainly help to get the creative juices flowing! One suggestion though, if I may, the entries for confidence/pride seem to be influenced mostly by social interactions, where there are other people involved alongside the character. I was wondering if you could include some entries inspired by an increase in confidence of one’s abilities in a dangerous situation? For instance, the character had been held captive but discovered a way to escape, or gained the upper hand, how would the character show this?
    Thank you!
    Your work is wonderful! It is helping so many writers like myself and it is all adored and appreciated! Thank you again

    • Hi Rebecca, so glad you’re finding our site useful. In the scenario you suggest, I think you’d see a lot of self talk to sort of move past one’s fear and do what needs to be done. I would say increased focus, economical body movements, body tension, ignoring distractions, giving oneself almost a physical shake or shaking out the hands to sort of have a physical way of “pushing” fear and doubt at bay would be typical. You’ll find a lot more suggestions (4 pages worth) to show both Pride and Confidence in the Emotion Thesaurus book–this here is just a very basic sample of ideas. If you like, look at the “look inside” feature at Amazon as they have a good sample of entries to show how we profile different emotions in depth. 🙂

      Happy writing!

  2. Biddy Fraser says:

    Amazingly useful – thanks very much for putting it together.

  3. Becca says:

    That’s something that has been interesting in compiling these lists–and challenging too; so many gestures can have multiple emotional meanings, depending on the context.

    And thanks for the kudos, people :).

  4. Marian says:

    Interesting. I sometimes have male characters running their hands through their hair, but it didn’t occur to me that this might be a sign of confidence. Maybe it’s a sign of vanity as well – as in, “look at my great hair, not receding… yet!” 🙂

  5. Tabitha says:

    I know you know this, but I’m saying it anyway. This thesaurus is awesome!! Thanks for putting it together.

  6. WordWrangler says:

    NIcely done! I’ll bookmark this one, too! 🙂

    Hugs,
    Donna

  7. Sara Spock says:

    These are great. Eye contact is a biggie with confidence. Excellent list!

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