I think I can, I think I can ...
So you wanna be cool as a cucumber in any situation? Think the little engine that could. Seriously, for me, it starts with a single positive thought: I can do this. I'm worthy. I deserve it. I'm here for a reason. And whatever happens, I can walk away knowing I gave my best shot. I was my own worst enemy for the longest time -- the queen of self-sabotage. I wasn't able to focus on the best things in myself; instead, I'd focus on my flaws. What I know now is that your inner dialogue is really important.
Laugh, even if your butt is showing
I am always happy when people tell me I have a good sense of humour. I try so hard not to take myself too seriously because it's a recipe for a nervous breakdown. I know I am not perfect, no one is, and if you don't laugh at mistakes, you'll cry over them. Besides, laughing is incredibly sexy!
There's one very simple thing you can do to boost your inner confidence: Stand up straight and tall. It works every time. Have you ever felt good about yourself when you are slumped over? Didn't think so. You look better when you stand tall -- thinner, more toned and muscular -- and you feel better because you're more aligned.
More of Carmen's sexy tips on the next page!Turn negative into positive
When you're trying to muster up the courage to calm your fears, use your anxiety to your advantage. Take all that energy and channel it into whatever you're doing. When you're fearful, you're also super alert and energized; yes, you're tense, but that tension can also be explosive. That's a lot of power you have at your disposal. The question is, are you going to let it drag you down or will you allow it to propel you forward?
Even a flaw can be fab
How boring would it be to go on a date with someone who was perfect? Imperfections are very attractive in people -- I would never be attracted to someone who was a phony, a fake, who tried to hide what made him unique. Your true self is going to come out eventually anyway, so you might as well strip off all the pretenses from day one and let it all hang out. Let him fall in love with the person you truly are.
Look 'em in the eye
Even if you are frozen with panic and totally tongue-tied, a confident stare, straight in the eye, can camouflage it. I remember on my first date with Dave I giggled and smiled and didn't say all that much. But boy, did I look him straight in the eye with my best "come hither, you hottie" stare. That's my MO when I'm feeling insecure: I let my eyes do the talking.
There is no greater turn off -- in business or on a date -- than someone who greets you with a bad handshake. So I asked the experts at New York City's Barbizon School (the people who coach modeling, poise, and all-around people skills) to break it down into a handshake how-to:
1. Keep your posture straight, make and maintain eye contact.
2. Step in toward the person when you shake hands; your grasp should be relaxed but firm.
3. Give a confident, sincere shake (about five seconds max), and, especially when in a stressful situation, make sure your palms aren't sweaty (a quick wipe on a cocktail napkin is a good precaution) before offering your hand.
4. To be ultra-demure you can turn your palm down and place only your fingers in his hand. Keep your chin down and eyes up.
Excerpted from How to Be Sexy by Carmen Electra. Copyright 2006 by Electra Blue Productions, Inc., Published by the United States by Broadway Books, an imprint of The Doubleday Broadway Publishing Group. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.