Confidence. Too much confidence, and you come across as arrogant. Too little confidence, and you come across as unsure.
According to Psychology Today, confidence “can be described as a belief in oneself, that one has the ability to meet life’s challenges and to succeed – and acting in a way that conveys that belief.” They continue to write, “Projecting just enough confidence helps people gain credibility, make a strong first impression, deal with pressure, and tackle personal and professional challenges.”
Most people know that being confident is a great thing – it means to be certain and to believe in yourself. In fact, according to Wikipedia, the word confidence “comes from [the] Latin word fidere, which means ‘to trust;’ therefore, having…self-confidence is having trust in oneself.”
If you’re confident that something will work out, it means you positively believe something will work out. If you’re confident that you solved a problem, it means you positively believe you solved a problem. And finally, if you’re confident about yourself, it means you positively believe in yourself. Confidence is a good thing.
According to Time Management Ninja, “Less confidence does not lead to success. To the contrary, it leads to holding back. It leads to shyness. Inaction. And often, missed opportunities.” The author of this blog post continues to write, “When I speak of confidence, I am not talking about blind arrogance. Those that are overly confident fall into yet another category. However, I am referring to the self-confidence needed to believe in one’s own skills, goals, and ability to succeed. When you believe in yourself you are more likely to take action. To stand up and seize the moment. And to persevere long after those who doubt themselves.”
In short, confidence is cool.
But there’s a difference between confidence and arrogance, also known as pride.
In the Bible, 1 Peter 5:5 says, “Clothe yourself with humility.” In addition, James 4:6 says, “But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: ‘God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.’”
Proverbs 16:18 says, “Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall.”
And lastly, Proverbs 16:5 says, “The LORD detests all the proud of heart. Be sure of this: They will not go unpunished.”
So, it’s pretty obvious that pride isn’t a good thing. But there is a difference between having pride and taking pride.
To have pride is to be prideful, to be constantly over-arrogant and over-confident of your actions. According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, one of the definitions of pride is “a feeling that you are more important or better than other people” and “inordinate self-esteem.” It’s arrogant and bordering narcissism – it’s believing you are better than others, have achieved more than others, or are, in a casual way of speaking, “all that and a bag of chips.”
However, taking pride in something is a completely different subject altogether. To take pride in something is to take pride in a beautiful masterpiece you finished, or a 1,000-word essay that you wrote, or a long list of tasks that you completed. It is good and actually healthy to be proud of your accomplishments, or else there would be no desire to accomplish them at all. If you weren’t proud of the major shot you took from several feet away when playing basketball, or the book you finished, or the work that you’ve done, then why would you even want to accomplish those things? In short, taking pride in accomplishments is good – but taking too much pride can lead to having pride, and having pride is not good.
In the summarization of confidence vs. arrogance, and taking pride vs. having pride: Confidence is believing in yourself, while arrogance is believing you’re better than others. Taking pride is a healthy way of rewarding yourself for your actions and accomplishments, while having pride is an arrogant way of believing that those accomplishments make you a better or more accomplished person than anyone else.
Be confident. Take pride – while at the same time remaining humble to yourself, to others, and to God. For as the Bible says in James 4:10, “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.”
– Arianna Fox, 13-Year-Old Girlpreneur, Double Author, Motivational Speaker, Voiceover Talent, and Actress
@afoxauthor on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram (Arianna Fox on LinkedIn and YouTube)