8 Reasons The Smartest People You Know Are The Ones Who Don’t Seem Confident All The Time

“Being confident” has almost become unrealistically lauded at this point – directly in proportion with how insecure we feel. It’s easier to portray someone who is infallibly sure of themselves rather than a whole, honest human who is sometimes uncertain and oftentimes questioning who is building their self-esteem as they go. It seems that we’ve replaced “genuine knowledge of your worth as a person” with “over-exaggerated compulsion of your talent and ability and superiority” and began to call it “confidence.” Truly self-aware people find an alternative better than being confident no matter what – and that’s in being able to accept their insecurities as normal, and see them as opportunities to grow, not hide.

1. Insecurity is often confused for humility. Insecurity is not always a crippling disease that needs to be overcome. Having a healthy dose of uncertainty isn’t a bad thing, a sign of being self-aware is realizing that you don’t know what you don’t know, and there’s always room to better yourself. Feeling “insecure” is only a problem when it’s taken to an extreme (but that doesn’t make the other extreme isn’t better by default.)

2. People who are truly confident are the ones that accept they may always, in some way, be insecure. The truth is that nobody is certain of anything. We don’t know. We could all be insane. Nothing is safe. The only way to truly surpass this (terrifying) reality is to accept it, and carry on, knowing that the only real security is in how much you can accept this, and work with – not against – it.

3. Being confident all the time is not inner strength, it’s delusion. It’s a façade that we think makes us less susceptible to other people’s judgments. People who are confident all the time are not seeing themselves with clarity. They’re hiding their fears by trying to convince themselves they’re fine.

4. It’s out of insecurity that people are usually pushed to grow. People who are confident and certain all the time never get much farther than where they are in the first place. Even when feeling insecure is a problem, that doesn’t mean it has to be forever. It just means there’s space (and opportunity) to grow.

5. There aren’t only two ways to be: overly-confident or cripplingly insecure. Insecurity isn’t always a bad thing, confidence isn’t always good. There’s a healthy middle ground. It’s not all-or-nothing, one or the other, you’re a confident person or an insecure person, with nothing in-between.

6. The problem with the world isn’t that people aren’t confident, it’s that they’re unsure of their inherent worth, and those are two separate issues. Overconfidence is usually a projection of what people fear isn’t true of them. It’s what happens when people are so unsure of their worth, they create a shield, a persona, who is certain. Confidence is knowing you’re capable, worthiness is knowing you’re deserving.

7. Confidence is something you build and choose, not something you just “try to feel” hard enough and then eventually adopt. In this case, “faking it until you make it” doesn’t really work. Confidence and self-esteem are things you build by doing things you’re proud of. It’s something you choose because you decide what your life should be measured by.

8. Real confidence comes from a feeling, not an idea. Sure, ideas can lend themselves in creating that feeling, but confidence is going through daily life not feeling as though you’re constantly comparing and placing yourself last because you aren’t deserving of anything more. Real confidence isn’t a choice as much as it is a ‘knowing’ because you’ve proved yourself to yourself… not to other people. TC mark

Brianna Wiest

Brianna Wiest is the author of SALT WATER.

Stop searching for happiness in the same place you lost it.

Salt Water, the new poetry collection by Brianna Wiest, is a must-have book on your journey to healing. Grab a cup of tea and let these essential, purifying prose calm your mind and filter out the noise.

Salt Water is a slow deep breath, in and out. It sits in a new genre of poetry, somewhere between artistic self-expression and candid self-help.” — Lee Crutchley

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