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Do you want to have more confidence? Are you worried about how others perceive you? Perhaps you have that big presentation coming up, and you’re already trembling at the thought of it?
Here’s some good news…
There are many ways you can work on your self-esteem, and improve your social skills in the process.
In this article, I’ll look into the current most effective nootropics for boosting mood, mental sharpness, and confidence in social situations.
If you don’t want to trawl through the entire post, here’s a quick overview of the 5 nootropics that help with confidence:
- L-Theanine – boosts alpha brain waves and GABA which are associated with states of calm and relaxed focus, making them ideal for social confidence.
- Rhodiola Rosea – shown to reduce anxiety and promote clear headspace during stress.
- Bacopa Monnieri – a natural adaptogen that calms the racing mind and reduces overthinking.
- L-Tyrosine – replenishes dopamine, a brain molecule that heavily influences your confidence and cognitive strength.
- Ashwagandha – shown to significantly inhibit stress hormones like cortisol and reduce anxiety.
Read on to learn more about these natural nootropics for confidence…
How Nootropics Can Improve Your Confidence
The following nootropics are supported by evidence showing their potential to help with mood, mental well being, and cognitive strength – which all directly correlate with confidence and self-esteem support.
Specifically, nootropics may help with confidence by:
- Influencing brain chemicals for better neurotransmitter balance, linked with calm relaxation and confidence
- Reducing cortisol levels associated with overthinking and stress
- Attuning your brain waves to a more relaxed and at ease state
Let’s now have a closer look at the most promising nootropics that help with confidence:
Good for: Calm, alertness, and reaction time.
If you’ve ever tried green tea, perhaps you noticed how it makes you calm yet alert at the same time. The feeling is similar to caffeine – except that it’s smoother and there’s no crash afterwards.
This effect of green tea is thanks to l-theanine. This natural amino acid occurs in green tea and some mushrooms.
L-Theanine is well known for promoting alpha brain waves which are linked to a state of deep but relaxed focus. Things like meditation will increase your alpha brain waves. (1)
- L-Theanine also interacts with your GABA receptors, which are the same receptors that get stimulated by alcohol. And while you won’t get drunk from Theanine, it’s a great social lubricant nonetheless.
Now, l-theanine works very well with caffeine. This combo even has a semi-official name – “the smart caffeine”. Together, caffeine and l-theanine will increase your reaction time, memory, and mental energy. That’s a perfect formula for being confident when you’re talking to people; you’re relaxed but mentally present at the same time.
However, if you’re sensitive to caffeine, then it’s better to take l-theanine alone.
Dosage: 100-200mg of l-theanine with a source of fat. You can also drink a cup or two of green tea if you can tolerate the caffeine.
2. Rhodiola Rosea
Good for: Stress resistance, mental clarity, and anxiety
Rhodiola Rosea is an adaptogenic herb – helping your body cope with a busy and demanding lifestyle. It’s also helpful for social nervousness and anxiety. (2, 3)
According to studies, Rhodiola will improve your mental performance under stress. What’s more, it works to enhance your brain’s neurotransmitters – including serotonin and dopamine – which play a key role in how you walk through the world and interact with others.
Dosage: 150-300mg of Rhodiola Rosea extract per day. Look for an extract that has a 3:1 ratio of rosavins and salidrosides. This is how it occurs in nature.
3. Bacopa Monnieri
Good for: Social confidence, relaxation, overthinking
Bacopa Monnieri is another adaptogen on this list. It’s also one of my favorite herbs for balancing mood under stressful situations.
Studies with Bacopa show that it has the potential to improve low self-esteem and anxiety, and can as such be a great aid in social situations. (4)
What’s more, Bacopa is one of the most effective herbs for neurogenesis. It’s among the very few nootropics that will increase your dendrites. These are small extensions of your brain cells that help your neurons communicate efficiently. In doing so, it helps you to stay mentally sharp during social situations.
Dosage: Depending on the strength of your Bacopa supplement, you should take anywhere between 200-750mg per day. Look at the label and make sure it’s high quality Bacopa. To avoid exposing yourself to heavy metals.
Good for: Racing thoughts, stress, energy, and mood
Talking to people can be draining and stressful. This is where L-Tyrosine steps it. It helps you stay sharp, smooth, and on point without getting mentally burned out. How?
Well, things like stress and sleep deprivation deplete your catecholamine neurotransmitters. These include dopamine, epinephrine, and norepinephrine. When these get depleted, you’ll feel down and ‘out of it’. Not to mention that your confidence will suffer.
But here’s the thing… Tyrosine is shown to recharge these brain chemicals to help you maintain peak cognitive performance and mood under pretty much any type of stressful situation. (5)
Dosage: 500-2,000mg per day, split into even doses. Bear in mind that more isn’t better here. Sometimes too much L-Tyrosine can produce a counter effect and make you anxious. Start with the lower dosage and see how you react.
Good for: Mental energy, chronic stress, anxiety
Ashwagandha is an extensively studied adaptogenic herb. Adaptogenic means, it can help you combat stress and mental fatigue and serve as a powerful aid in your social interactions.
Meaning “the smell of the horse” in traditional Ayurveda (in other words, it will give you the strength and vitality of the animal). Ashwagandha is shown to induce a state of calm and help reduce your cortisol levels.
A study showed that “300mg of an ashwagandha extract (“full-spectrum”) for 60 days in persons with chronic mental stress was able to improve all tested parameters and reduced serum cortisol by 27.9%.” (6)
Given the amount of clinical evidence that backs Ashwagandha, there’s no question it belongs on the list of nootropics that help with confidence.
Dosage: 600-2400mg per day of Ashwagandha extract. Ideally, with food.
Premade Nootropic Stacks
The herbs listed above are all fantastic on their own. But in case you want to take things a step further. Then you may want to check professional pre-made nootropic formulas. These combine multiple nootropic ingredients – including some of the ones from this list – to maximize your mood, social confidence, and mental sharpness across the board.
See for yourself:
Mind Lab Pro
For example, Mind Lab Pro is one of our current top rated nootropics for confidence, focus, mental sharpness, and just about any other area of brain function you could think of. Often referred to as ‘the Universal Nootropic,’ Mind Lab Pro includes 11 highly effective nootropics, including 3 that are on this list. Among many benefits that Mind Lab Pro offers, it also targets the ‘social’ aspect – without using any stimulants that could trigger anxiety side effects.
Read our Mind Lab Pro Review to learn what this nootropic can do for you.
Onnit Alpha Brain
Another great option is Onnit Alpha Brain. This supplement has often been personally endorsed by Joe Rogan, a popular comedian and radio host. Alpha Brain is well received by many people. It uses a range of premium nootropics that, much like Mind Lab Pro, target different brain pathways for total cognitive optimization. This includes social confidence and anxiety resistance.
You can read our Alpha Brain review here.
What About Alcohol?
Alcohol is probably one of the best social lubricants. But, it also has many drawbacks.
For one, it only works in the short term. You can’t really rely on it to be confident all the time. Drinking a shot or two of vodka before a speech might float someone’s boat, but it’s definitely not a healthy long-term solution for boosting confidence.
Another issue is that alcohol interferes with how your brain works. You won’t be cognitively as sharp as when you’re sober. Not to mention that you might not even remember your social interaction the next day (depending on how much you drank!).
All in all, alcohol is not recommended for boosting self-confidence. If you do have an issue with anxiety, we always recommend checking with your doctor before anything else.
Anything Else to Consider?
As you’ve seen above, some nootropics can be helpful for improving your verbal skills and overall confidence in your day to day life.
However, while I often write about supplements here and on my brain health blog, it’s important to emphasize that these are just ‘addons’ to your lifestyle. You should always cover your bases first.
Essentially, don’t forget about regular exercise, sleep, and diet. The holy triad of health as some people would say.
Getting in regular workouts every week, sleeping well for 7-9 hours per night depending on how much your body needs. Along with eating plenty of colorful vegetables and avoiding junk at fast-food restaurants.
Studies show that this helps your brain stabilize its levels of brain chemicals dopamine and serotonin. Both of which play a huge role in how you feel about yourself.
Conclusion on Nootropics That Help With Confidence
Nootropics are supplements that are known to enhance different aspects of brain function.
Some nootropics work to improve memory, others target productivity and motivation, and then there are nootropics that help with confidence.
From Bacopa Monnieri to L-Tyrosine, there are many natural solutions to help your brain work better and smoother in social situations.
However, remember that nootropics can’t replace the advice of a medical professional. If you have any kind of health condition, make sure to get advice from your doctor before trying anything else.
- L-theanine, a natural constituent in tea, and its effect on mental state. (source)
- The Effects of Rhodiola rosea L. Extract on Anxiety, Stress, Cognition and Other Mood Symptoms. (source)
- A pilot study of Rhodiola rosea (Rhodax) for generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). (source)
- [Bacopa Monnieri – activity and applications in medicine]. (source)
- Effect of tyrosine supplementation on clinical and healthy populations under stress or cognitive demands–A review. (source)
- A Prospective, Randomized Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study of Safety and Efficacy of a High-Concentration Full-Spectrum Extract of Ashwagandha Root in Reducing Stress and Anxiety in Adults. (source)