23/12/2013 05:21 GMT | Updated 19/02/2014 05:59 GMT

The Language of Love: Confidence

This time of year is always busy for me. With Christmas just around the corner, the dating season is in full swing! Parties, family events and a general feeling of optimism make people more approachable, which is an added bonus if you are looking for love.

The biggest issue that I find with my clients is their lack of confidence and misconceptions about the dating world. The largest cause of low self-esteem is negativity. I always say positive thoughts and actions will lead to positive reactions. Negativity comes from our fear of rejection and uncertainty. Recent research by hair and scalp care brand head&shoulders revealed that 40%* of British men say they lack confidence when it comes to dating. Here are some of the most common misconceptions in dating:

1. Women don't want to be approached. This is not true. They do, they just want to be approached in a confident and friendly, non-threatening manner

2. She is out of my league. When it comes to dating there is no such thing as leagues! We all have something about us that makes us special, it is just about bringing those qualities to life in the right way

3. Online dating is embarrassing. Online dating is a fast and fun way to meet people and what is embarrassing about that? The world is a very busy place to be at the moment and this is an easy way to find someone without all the waiting around

4. Game Playing: Don't play games with people. Waiting three days to text back is unacceptable and will leave you out in the cold. If you are interested, let them know. Take your initiative and arrange a date!

So how do men approach women? It is all about confidence? I would definitely say yes, confidence is vital to making an initial first impression and connection with the opposite sex. Of course, we are all scared of rejection; it is human nature and a self-preservation mechanism that we use on a day-to-day basis. However, what men need to realise is that confidence is not some magical, unobtainable thing. It is just about adopting a different way of seeing the world and yourself. Here are some of my tips to help you feel confident to approach women this Christmas:

• Personal Appearance - It is important you look and feel good so take time out to spruce up your hair, splash on some aftershave and shine those shoes. Women respond more positively to a well groomed man, so I would recommend avoiding those novelty socks and ties at the Christmas party this year

• Body Confidence - Use body language to your advantage; take your hands out of your pockets, stand up straight, smile and make eye contact whenever possible

• Show Interest - Ask lots of questions and show interest. A confident man will talk about others - cocky men only talk about themselves. Ask open questions that require more than a simple yes or no answer

• Get on with it and get out there - Confident people aren't afraid to take risks and bounce back quickly when things don't go their way. Failure is a vital step towards growth and change. You won't meet a woman sat at home watching soppy films. Get out there and socialise and you will find your chances of meeting someone special are a lot higher

• Positivity - We are naturally programmed to compare ourselves to others and scrutinise our weaknesses. It may feel unnatural but before approaching a woman try to think about your strengths and what you have to offer. A positive mind-set will speak volumes.

• Online Profile Picture - The online dating game can sometimes feel like a fickle world, where judgments can be made in seconds. Research found that 32%* of British men aged 25-34 worry that they will be judged by their profile picture. Include one head shot of you wearing a suit. Studies have shown that men with fitted suits are 2.3 times more likely to be checked out and received 3.5 times more emails. Also make sure one image shows off your personality by including a photo of an activity or something interesting that will give people a conversation starter and a reason to contact you.

So there we have it, I have outlined the misconceptions in dating and ways that you can approach women. It is important to always remain true to who you are and maintain a high level of confidence. Confidence is an attractive trait so go out and enjoy yourself this Christmas, whether that's making the most of your online dating page or taking that girl you've always had your eye on out on a date.

*Survey conducted by Arden Reed for head&shoulders