The difference between individuals who achieve their dreams and those who feel unsatisfied with their lives often comes down to confidence.

When someone feels that they need the approval or validation of others to feel good about themselves, they're stuck playing a never ending game of cat and mouse. No matter how many things they accomplish or beautiful items they buy, it's never enough to stay free of judgment and criticism.

People with genuine confidence walk into rooms and demand attention through their presence alone. They don't need the approval of others, but they're so grounded in who they are and confident in themselves that the entire group of people turn their heads in envy or admiration.

If you want to develop authentic confidence and transform your life, you need to know these brutal truths about confidence:

1. Real confidence cannot be purchased or sold.

Whether it's nice clothes or the need to tell everyone how awesome they are, millions of people in this world think that they can purchase confidence.

They've been told that "If you wear these markers of success and cover your inadequacy, people will think you're important."

For the most part, this is true--people do make surface-level judgments and give people power and privilege based on their appearances, however, there's a big difference between a false bravado and authentic confidence, which has nothing to do with how you look.

2. Real confidence has to do with how you carry yourself.

When you're genuinely confident, you listen to your intuition above all else.

You don't go to a bar and drink because "everyone else is doing it," you either drink or abstain due to your gut feeling in that moment and nothing else.

Confident people can wear whatever the heck they want--it doesn't matter if it has holes in it, bright colors, fur, or a stained white t-shirt and average blue jeans--when someone's truly confident in themselves, no matter what they're wearing, it's a fashion statement instead of a wardrobe malfunction.

3. Confident people have compassion, insecure people don't.

If you're insecure, chances are you'll do your best to avoid your awareness of your feelings. When you don't trust yourself or believe in your abilities to create positive change, you push those feelings onto other people.

You look around the world and see mean-spirited people that are out to harm, embarrass, and exploit you. You may feel the need to go the opposite direction and convince everyone how awesome you are--that way they can't penetrate your armor and see the real you.

People with real confidence look at the world and they see potential. They see people that are hurting and in need of love and understanding.

They look at each person and give them the respect they deserve--that's why when you're talking to a person with genuine confidence they make you feel like the only person on the planet.

4. Real confidence has no shortcut.

No matter how many accomplishments you acquire, how many titles and degrees you earn, how much money and publicity you attract, none of those things will change your core.

In fact, all of those things will only amplify what was already present in your life. If you were a mean-spirited person, lots of money and fame will maximize your cruelty. If you were a philanthropist, you'll start making an even greater impact on your local community.

People gain authentic confidence from developing their skills, healing past wounds, and building self-trust.

5. Only people with real confidence can achieve their true potential.

If you lack self-trust, then your insecurities will hold you back. No matter how much you achieve, those issues will still be present like a thorn in your side that prevents the full enjoyment and fulfillment that's possible.

Real confidence empowers people to listen to their intuition even if it means sacrificing monetary gain or friendships. Real confidence is the foundation of success, because it provides people the self-trust necessary to take risks and be vulnerable in front of others.

Real confidence gives someone the courage needed to confront their past, embrace current challenges, and enjoy the journey into the unknown future with a smile and an open heart.

A person with real confidence has presence, power, and the ability to achieve their potential.