How to Be More Confident as a Small Man

Most people are insecure about their body, but this is largely due to the lack of confidence in themselves. There are several steps you can take that will boost your self-esteem and help you feel more confident as a small man or woman.

The “how to be confident as a short guy reddit” is a blog post that provides tips on how to be more confident as a small man. The post also includes some of the most common questions and answers from Reddit.

Vintage Thin man flexing.

Note from the editor: This is a guest post by Brock McGoff.

Do you have a small stature? Do you have a lower stature than the majority of men? Do you ever feel more like a boy than a man because of your physical stature?

I was usually the smallest child in class when I was little. Actually, I’m still doing it. I’m 5’6′′ in boots and have never weighed more than 130 pounds.

So you might call me a petite guy, albeit I like the word “svelte.”

On top of that, I simply seem to be in my early twenties. I can’t develop a mustache or a beard, and my chest isn’t covered with hair.

Every time I order a drink, I’m carded, and I can barely reach the subway handrails.

When everyone else was going through their teenage growth spurts, my basketball career came to a stop after middle school. And finding a suit that didn’t appear like a hand-me-down from my older brother was difficult.

Needless to say, this depressed me greatly (pun intended).

My lack of height used to be a significant cause of insecurity for me. To be honest, it still is at times, particularly:

  • When I can’t find something to wear that fits.
  • When my girlfriend asks me to retrieve something that she can’t reach and neither can I.
  • When I’m at a concert and can’t see anything.
  • When people make fun of me, I become irritated (yes, that still happens sometimes).

However, it is no longer as terrible as it once was. I’m no longer interested in it. My stature does not possess me. It’s mine.

Being short isn’t something I was born with. It’s me, by the way. It’s a part of who I am. It took almost thirty years for me to discover that this isn’t a terrible thing.

It’s made me value much more vital characteristics like personality and selflessness. It’s motivated me to work on gaining confidence and feeling macho in ways that have nothing to do with my genetic makeup.

To put it another way, being the short child has taught me a vital lesson:

Concentrate exclusively on what you have control over.

You see, there are many aspects of your life that you have no control over, like as your height, baldness, IQ, upbringing, and so on.

It’s a waste of time to focus on these things (which actually implies fretting about them).

Instead, spend your time concentrating on topics you can influence, such as:

  • Expertise (as opposed to raw intelligence)
  • Abilities
  • People abilities
  • Fitness
  • The way you look (dress, grooming, mannerisms)
  • Relationships

These are the areas where you should concentrate your physical and mental energies since they lead to self-assurance.

Confidence is nothing more than a construct.

Confidence is a myth. It’s all a figment of your imagination. It’s not the “thing” that matters, but the outcome. That’s why urging someone to “be more confident” isn’t particularly effective.

This is a common occurrence on Reddit’s /r/short section. Male members of this short-statured group often express their concerns with dating and blame their lack of love success on their height.


Whether or not this is the true, the most common piece of advise they get is something along the lines of: “Women don’t care about height; they worry about confidence.” So, instead of being self-conscious about your height, strive to be more confident.”

If only it was that simple! You can’t simply decide to be self-assured. Consider the following definition of confidence: A self-assured guy is a confident man. He recognizes and trusts his own strengths and characteristics. A confident guy believes he can get the task done, whether it’s approaching a lady, nailing an interview, or repairing a toilet. He has enough faith in himself to allow others to trust and depend on him.

Confidence is self-respect and self-reliance. And there’s no way to obtain more of it by wishing and hoping. You must offer yourself reasons to trust in yourself that have nothing to do with things you can’t change, such as your height.

2 Ways to Boost Your Self-Assuredness

Personally, I’ve concentrated much of my efforts on developing expertise and competency in two areas that are ideal for guys who aren’t quite “perfect 10s,” particularly shorter gentlemen like myself:

  1. Well-dressed.
  2. Learning how to fight is essential.

Martial arts and personal style may seem to be entirely unconnected, however they have a lot in common:

  • They’re quite addicting.
  • They motivate you to maintain your fitness.
  • They’re iterative and progressive.
  • They’re long-term and never-ending (no end in sight).

That isn’t the only thing they have in common. Training in martial arts and looking good may be aggravating, time-consuming, and costly.

However, both of these things have a significant influence on confidence and are well worth pursuing.

Let’s take a closer look at each one.

How to Begin Dressing Properly

Before we go into the details of how to improve your image, there’s one issue that has to be addressed:

Why do you feel more confidence when you dress better?

The appropriate clothing may bring out your best features, hide your flaws, and make you seem more fit, put-together, macho, and attractive than you “actually” are. This has a two-fold effect: you feel better about yourself and so carry yourself better, and others appreciate you more and approach and engage with you differently as a result. Both impacts contribute to a positive feedback loop: the better you appear, the more confident you behave, and the more confident you act and look, the more positive feedback you get from others, which further adds to your confidence!

External and internal signals have a great impact on how you feel on the inside, and external signals from others have a large impact on how you feel on the inside. “People treat me like a competent, good-looking person, therefore I must be one,” your brain reasoned.

However, wearing better isn’t always a certain way to boost your self-esteem. In fact, going about it incorrectly might have the exact opposite impact.


When men decide to start dressing better, they often shift from jeans and t-shirts to sport jackets and pants. In many settings, they feel overdressed, and they are often overdressed. Similarly, the new clothes they pick are typically ill-fitting, baggy, and ugly. As a result, rather from making them feel more confident, their new outfits make them feel more self-conscious and embarrassed.

As a style novice, the first thing you should concentrate on is ensuring that the outfit you’re wearing fits properly. Fit is actually 80% of wearing properly, which is why it ranks first on the style pyramid.

Do you want to slim down?

Wear clothing that are comfortable.

Do you want to seem taller?

Wear clothing that are comfortable.

Do you want to seem more manly?

Put on clothing that are comfortable.

You get my drift. Garments that fit well, regardless of body shape, make you seem more athletic, put-together, and confident than clothes that don’t.

Of course, saying it is easier than doing it. Most garments won’t fit properly off the rack unless you have an absolutely average body shape (without alterations). You’re out of luck if you’re exceptionally short/skinny/tall/large.

The first step in this scenario is to understand how garments should fit. Begin with the fundamentals:

  • How Should a Suit Fit?
  • The Complete Jean Fitting Guide
  • How Should Dress Shirts Fit?

Once you’ve figured out how garments should fit, look through your closet and determine what’s worth keeping, what can be modified, and what has to go.

Be brutally honest in this section. Give away everything you haven’t worn in over a year as soon as feasible.

After you’ve finished this detox, you may start putting together a wardrobe of items that compliment your body shape.

Only when you’ve mastered fit should you go on to other areas of fashion. In particular, attempt to find out:

  • Footwear
  • Color
  • Patterns
  • Layering
  • The dress code is:
  • Accessories

Start updating your wardrobe by simply stepping up a notch or two in what you’re already wearing. Replace your t-shirts with polos, your saggy light-colored jeans with dark, well-fitted denim, and your shoes with chukkas, for example. You may experiment with button-down shirts, non-denim jeans, and yes, even sport coats as you get more comfortable in your somewhat more spiffy wardrobe and start taking attention of where and when you wear various clothing.

Also, be sure to get some compression shorts and boxing gloves, since you’ll need them to learn how to fight.

Understanding How to Fight

I’ve never been in a serious brawl. Sure, my oldest brother savaged me, and I savaged my younger brothers (and we all beat up on our cousin, Matt). But I’ve never been in a full-fledged fight on the street.

What’s more, you know what? That’s a positive development. Even if you “win,” fighting is frightening and deadly.


Isn’t it, nevertheless, innately primitive and strangely thrilling? I don’t want to fight anybody, but I do want to be put to the test. I want to know that if I had to, I would be able to defend myself and my family.

Ryan Holiday remarked in an interview with MMA Mania:

“I was thinking a lot about Theodore Roosevelt while doing jiu jitsu. Theodore Roosevelt was a fragile, feeble young man. ‘You’ve got a terrific intellect but a very weak body,’ his father told him, ‘and a strong mind can’t achieve what it has to do with a weak body.’ Roosevelt, on the other hand, didn’t merely go to the gym and lift weights. The goal behind ‘The Strenuous Life’ was to put himself to physical challenges throughout his life. It’s all about pushing oneself to new limits, both emotionally and physically. Jiu jitsu and mixed martial arts (MMA) are the finest representations of such concept. They’re as straightforward as they come.”

Another MMA aficionado, author Tucker Max, had this to say about the sport:

“I guess what drew me to MMA was how much more honest and genuine it was than anything else I’d done as an athlete before.” On a fundamental, primitive level, it simply made sense to me.”

Fighting is more common than ever, thus you can take the man out of the cave, but you can’t take the cave out of the man. Mixed martial arts has grown into a massive business, thanks in part to the popularity of the UFC.

Every city in America is seeing an increase of MMA gyms, which means that anybody interested in learning to fight may do it in a safe, supportive atmosphere.

I recall the first time I entered an MMA gym. It was in the basement of a historic church in the city’s “up and coming” area. It was hot and humid, with a sweaty odor. Gloves smacking the bags and hands slapping the mat could be heard.

They provided a wide range of lessons, including boxing, self-defense, and grappling.

I chose Brazilian jiu-jitsu as my emphasis since I had heard it was a fantastic fighting method for tiny people. In reality, some of the first BJJ practitioners were rather little guys.

This makes sense since jiu-jitsu is mostly a ground sport, and stature and height aren’t nearly as significant on the ground as they are on your feet.

Do you have any idea how it feels to drag a guy twice your size to the mat and compel him to submit? What a boost in self-esteem!

If you believe BJJ is for you, watch Rener Gracie, a member of the Gracie family who invented and popularized the sport, in the Art of Manliness video series:

  • Brazilian Jiu-Origins Jitsu’s
  • Brazilian Jiu-Philosophy Jitsu’s
  • The Fundamentals of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu

If you have the want to fight, I highly advise you to locate a nearby BJJ, MMA, or boxing gym and visit it.


Find an academy near your home or job using Google or Yelp. Give them a call and let them know you’d like to try a class (most gyms will let you sit in on one or two classes for free).

Then don’t give up! It will be physically and psychologically demanding, regardless of the style you select. But if you stick with it and come up every week, it will get easier.

And what about the sensation you get when you make someone tap out for the first time? That’s something you’ll have to find out for yourself.


We’re all afraid of something. It’s generally something we don’t have any control over, such as our height. Ignore these things as much as possible and concentrate on what you can control, such as developing new talents (such as martial arts) and presenting yourself in the best possible light (by dressing well).

Remember, feeling confident isn’t a natural condition for most of us. It’s a result of taking action, developing habits, and continuously improving.

Remember, feeling confident isn’t a natural condition for most of us. It’s a result of taking action, developing habits, and continuously improving.

Brock McGoff is the founder of The Modest Man, a style resource for short guys who want to look and feel better in their clothes. Check out How to Dress Taller: 11 Crucial Style Tips for Short Men, his free PDF book.



Watch This Video-

The “how to accept being short man” is a question that many men have asked themselves. One way to be more confident as a small man is to accept your size and not compare yourself with others.

Frequently Asked Questions

What makes a man more confident?

A: We dont really know what makes a man more confident, but it is speculated that it can be attributed to the hormone testosterone. It has been noted that men with high levels of this hormone are considered to be more dominant in certain situations like during competitions.

How can I be confident with height?

A: The algorithm that I use to estimate height is not perfect. However, it will give you a good range of how tall someone might be, and should always be within two inches in either direction from the true answer.

Are short people more confident?

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