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How Do You Develop Confidence Without Being Arrogant

Updated: Aug 10, 2020

by Abdul Wafiy. |

See if the following sentences relate to you:

  • You are someone that is afraid that your opinion is not important.

  • You are someone that does not know how to speak your own thoughts.

  • You are someone that is afraid of what others think of you.

  • You let people treat you however they want without fear of consequences

This is the exact same way that I felt a few years ago. I could not overcome the enfeebling fear that I was not worth anything. I had no self-esteem. Over the years I did build trust in myself and rational thinking of what I am capable of, but I did not want to go the negative way – becoming arrogant and full of myself because there is a fine line between being confident and being arrogant.

No one likes a smart aleck or someone who does not listen because they believe they have nothing to learn from others. If you show arrogance, you may displease people, lose potential opportunities, and even destroy your reputation. Plus, it can be a lonely way to live.

Real, authentic confidence is built gradually, and it comes with experience and time, it is not an overnight process. Here are some ways how you can be confident without being cocky.

Know Your Own Strengths

This is the thing that led me to believe that I was not worth anything: not knowing my own strengths. Everyone has strengths, and it is important to identify what you are good at in your life. Recognizing what you are good at, and trying to build on those things, will help you to build confidence in your own abilities. You can use a simple technique like S.W.O.T Analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats) to take a look at who and where you are. Strengths and weaknesses are within yourself — things that you have some control over and can change to improve yourself.

Look at your achievements and reflect on your life and think about what your friends consider to be your strengths and weaknesses, or you can ask them directly. Then also think about the external opportunities and threats you are facing. Make sure to focus more on your strengths and what you can do instead of dwelling too long on your weaknesses and what you can’t do!

Body Language

Having confidence does not do you any good if you become unfriendly because of it. You can make yourself more approachable or friendlier by using confident body language that shows interest in the conversation. Body language here means your smile, your posture, the amount of eye contact you make, and also your way of speaking. The way you present yourself physically can have a very real impact on what people think of you.

Making some simple adjustments can make the world of difference to you. For example, in social settings, you can introduce yourself first, offer a handshake, try smiling a little bit more and make sure you look directly at people when they speak to you rather than looking at the surrounding; this makes the speaker feel heard and you won’t come off as an apathetic person. All these simple adjustments will not only give others the impression that you are a confident person but as they warm up to your approachability, you will also feel more confident in how you carry yourself.

Surround Yourself with Like-Minded People

Check your inner circle of people, those you spend the most time with– and ask yourself if they are optimistic, encouraging, and generally have the kind of charisma you’d want to achieve. Perhaps it can be hard for you, especially if you spend a lot of time with your family and friends, but it is really important to consider distancing yourself from those individuals who bring you down, are full of negativity, and do nothing to help boost your self-confidence.

However, getting people around you that only support and lift you up but do not show you where you’re misstepping is certainly an easy way to become cocky. You need to find a balance between plain encouragement and constructive criticism. It’s important to also have people around you that will call you out when you’re becoming too full of yourself. These people who show you the reality of any situation are some of the best people to have as friends and companions.  I am not saying to have people around you that make you feel like crap, but you need people around you that are not afraid to tell you the truth about yourself and your situations.

Be Mindful

Mindfulness stops you from being arrogant. Combining confidence with mindfulness is a good way to make you truly grounded. Simply stop as often as you can and ask yourself what you are doing, how you are doing it, and if it is the way you wished it to be. Perhaps set up reminders in your diary or notes to do this throughout the day to keep yourself on track. This is the beginning of mindfulness.

Review Yourself

Being confident without becoming arrogant in the long run is a big challenge that needs to be kept on our important agenda all the time. To make sure that you are confident without being arrogant in the long run, you need to consistently check in on yourself, as you may be carried away on some days and unconsciously cross that line.

You need to take some time and look back at your own S.W.O.T Analysis, ask your trusted friends if you are crossing the line, and seek advice on how you can improve. 

I personally believe that self-confidence is extremely important in every aspect of our lives and people who lack self-confidence can find it difficult to become successful, but we need to be careful lest we mistake pride and arrogance for confidence. Keep yourself grounded, surround yourself with the right people, and in turn be the right person for other people.

You can also find out more about the writer on Instagram.

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