Confidence and Arrogance...finding true confidence??? - Social Anxiety Forum
 
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post #1 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-04-2007, 11:52 AM Thread Starter
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Confidence and Arrogance...finding true confidence???


I'm having a hard time...

The times i have felt TRUE confidence is when I won't second guess myself, the things that come out of my mouth are things i surprise myself with (in a good way) and yet I'm still aware of the present moment and there is a self assurance there like I know myself and am not afraid.

The times i have felt arrogant, i let lose of second guessing myself but my awareness is no longer there and I am surprised by the things i say but not in a good way, i tend to regret whats come out of my mouth afterwards and i notice the situations before this arrogance pops up are when I'm comparing myself to others or when I'm TRYING too hard to be something I'm not comfortable with

I guess I don't' truly understand who i am or have certainty about myself but then how do i come to understand more about me when I'm so uncertain?

I've avoided many social situations over the years because I didn't like how I saw myself afterwards in those situations yet if I'm able to take a days rest after going through something like that I can start clearly seeing who I was in those situations and come to some understanding like that K-OS lyric "relationship is a mirror that you see yourself within and the picture is clearer"...its just the embarrassment i feel inside of myself or that i feel others saw me differently after being with them that so painful to me.

Doubt, i think i've kept you around for so long because when I'm doubting i bring myself down so i won't get arrogant yet I can't truly be confident either with you around, hrmmmmm

How do you find true confidence in yourself without becoming too arrogant, and have you had problems dealing with this at all?

thanks

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post #2 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-04-2007, 12:38 PM
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Wow this is a issue i've been thinking about lately too and a interesting topic. I'm often either timid and feel inferior too others but when i sometimes feel more certain about myself i'm more arrogant and care less about others and kind of do what i feel like. I guess it's the same as you say about awareness. My awareness is lowered and therefore i don't notice my negative thoughts as much. Maybe.
A way to maybe get more confidence might be to accept yourself (cliche..). I often have these past events and failures pop into my head and what i think helps is to try and say "yeah that was a bit silly or stupid, but i accept it.. i do make mistakes but that's okay". I'm not sure if that works during a social event but it may do so. Maybe try to keep awareness and accept yourself and then i think you may also accept others and don't feel arrogant.
As i see the more we put ourselves down the longer it will take before we can start acting normal and enjoy our lives. If i can't accept the past and the mistakes and myself i won't be able to ever enjoy the present as i want to.
Hope i make a little bit sense.

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post #3 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-04-2007, 02:48 PM
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re: Confidence and Arrogance...finding true confidence???


the only times i've had confidence were when i've had to think of myself as better than someone. i don't know how else to gain confidence without thinking like that.
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post #4 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-05-2007, 05:06 PM
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re: Confidence and Arrogance...finding true confidence???


I used to have this same problem hardcore. I like what kowabonga said about thinking about situations you did bad in and just accepting it and realizing we are human so we all make mistakes and even say stupid stuff now and known. I used to come across really arrogant b/c of my SA, but that was mainly b/c I wasn't comfortable with my own self and believed making mistakes made me weak. it is the opposite though, realizing we all make mistakes and knowing that we have weaknesses and admitting to it makes you a stronger person...and more confident. accepting your self for who you are is easier said than done, but can only be done if you accept your weaknesses along the way and realizing we can't be perfect and do everything right. this has helped me "find" my self since I'm not extremely worried about pleasing other people, but just focusing on the things that I like and enjoy and if some people like what I like...cool, if not, then that is fine as well.

I feel like i went off on a tangent there...haha, anyways, I hope some of that helped.

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post #5 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-05-2007, 10:41 PM Thread Starter
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Re: re: Confidence and Arrogance...finding true confidence??


Quote:
Originally Posted by Grantonio
I used to have this same problem hardcore. I like what kowabonga said about thinking about situations you did bad in and just accepting it and realizing we are human so we all make mistakes and even say stupid stuff now and known. I used to come across really arrogant b/c of my SA, but that was mainly b/c I wasn't comfortable with my own self and believed making mistakes made me weak. it is the opposite though, realizing we all make mistakes and knowing that we have weaknesses and admitting to it makes you a stronger person...and more confident. accepting your self for who you are is easier said than done, but can only be done if you accept your weaknesses along the way and realizing we can't be perfect and do everything right. this has helped me "find" my self since I'm not extremely worried about pleasing other people, but just focusing on the things that I like and enjoy and if some people like what I like...cool, if not, then that is fine as well.

I feel like i went off on a tangent there...haha, anyways, I hope some of that helped.
thanks guys, acceptance...accepting myself...

listen in between your notes
theres something been going on
while you were busy taking notes
and look in between your moments
theres something good happening
its good to sometimes
slow it down

get your head out from those mags
and websites who try to
shape your style
take a risk just for yourself
and wade into the deep end of the ocean

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post #6 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-06-2007, 06:23 AM
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re: Confidence and Arrogance...finding true confidence???


Arrogance is sort of a defense mechanism. I always thought that arrogant people had self-esteem problems and maybe suffered from a touch of SA as well. It's like they found strength and confidence in being cocky, *****holes. Those people are carrying around alot of emotional baggage.

Being confident means beinig in control. You're not afraid and your almost on auto-pilot. Confident people dont need defense mechanisms because there's no fear involved and dont need to intimidate.
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post #7 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-07-2007, 04:30 AM
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re: Confidence and Arrogance...finding true confidence???


Acceptance seems so easy, but I'm finding it really difficult to do. Does anybody have any insights on how to go about that? It's hard to let go of the past and be comfortable around others. Everywhere I go I think that people are judging me and I feel inferior

How do confident people think when they are out in the world? Do they ever worry about what other's are thinking? Do they ever judge themselves or others harshly? Do they ever worry that they are going to do or say something stupid and embarrass themselves? I think that maybe if I had some insight on how a confident person 'thinks', I would be able to understand better what I need to do to gain some confidence. Does that make any sense?
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post #8 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-07-2007, 04:39 AM
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re: Confidence and Arrogance...finding true confidence???


I haven't read the replies here, so I don't know what has been said already, but I did read a good book on assertiveness once which provided a good analogy.

Imagine a pendulum swinging. On the far left is passiveness, and on the far right, is aggressiveness (which is where arrogance sits). Now, generally, most of us here, we're passive for the majority of the time. If we want to make improvements then we must start the pendulum swinging, and since no one is perfect we will naturally over hit our mark and swing over to the aggressive spectrum.

True confidence is so hard to hit and you will never get there first time. It will take a lot of time and effort to ge there. On the way many mistakes will be made and you will find it impossible not to go from passive, to aggressive, back to passive, aggressive, passive...

Eventually though, the pendulum will slow. You'll find your confidence.

If you don't believe me, then just look at kids. They're passive, then they're aggressive... They're finding their footing in life (which includes socially), right? They make a lot of mistakes on the way, but it has to be done.

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post #9 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-07-2007, 05:36 AM
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re: Confidence and Arrogance...finding true confidence???


hmm, interesting discussion. i can definitely relate, because in the past i have accused of "trying too hard" (which at the time i just found baffling... how am i supposed to learn to get it right if i don't try?) and of swinging beteen being arrogance and passivity. now i think i understood what those people meant... and while i may now have somewhat greater insight, that doesnt' necessarily mean i'm 'fixed'. god, not at all!

but getting back to the topic at hand, how to be truly confident... well, i think in the past there used to be more emphasis on competence, and less on self-esteem. the self-esteem movement puts all the focus on the self, the individual, which is kinda what gets us stuck in the first place, isn't it? i mean, both as individuals, because an excess of focus on the self comes down to a form of selfishness, doesn't it? and distracts from focus on becoming competent enough at... whatever... to gain the respect and admiration of others.

i know it's not quite as simple as that... we do have to look within, and it's part of the nature of introverts to be reflective, and lord knows there are many extroverts out there who would be better people if they weren't *quite* so self-accepting... <lol>... but i have found that when i'm most 'in the flow' and therefore most confident (and competent) is when i'm doing something i like and have worked at long enough, and hard enough, that i'm pretty good at it. or when i feel i am genuinely giving someone something they want or need.

-stifstef
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post #10 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-07-2007, 06:43 AM Thread Starter
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Re: re: Confidence and Arrogance...finding true confidence??


Quote:
Originally Posted by mico
I haven't read the replies here, so I don't know what has been said already, but I did read a good book on assertiveness once which provided a good analogy.

Imagine a pendulum swinging. On the far left is passiveness, and on the far right, is aggressiveness (which is where arrogance sits). Now, generally, most of us here, we're passive for the majority of the time. If we want to make improvements then we must start the pendulum swinging, and since no one is perfect we will naturally over hit our mark and swing over to the aggressive spectrum.

True confidence is so hard to hit and you will never get there first time. It will take a lot of time and effort to ge there. On the way many mistakes will be made and you will find it impossible not to go from passive, to aggressive, back to passive, aggressive, passive...

Eventually though, the pendulum will slow. You'll find your confidence.

If you don't believe me, then just look at kids. They're passive, then they're aggressive... They're finding their footing in life (which includes socially), right? They make a lot of mistakes on the way, but it has to be done.
LOVE the whole pendulum image/idea and it feels good that I'm not the only one experiencing this while out there in the real world...there have been times when I'll let my guard down and just let loose and in that moment I THINK i'm aware but then i'll look back and know I was acting on arrogance and then really regret some of the things I did and the ways i acted...Embarrassing and fear of going back around those people because of the way i acted...

I think I'm an extrovert naturally but I hide it because I fear the ridicule I've received in the past (Elementary school etc bullying) So I've held that side of me back and I'm scared to let loose and be child like...

listen in between your notes
theres something been going on
while you were busy taking notes
and look in between your moments
theres something good happening
its good to sometimes
slow it down

get your head out from those mags
and websites who try to
shape your style
take a risk just for yourself
and wade into the deep end of the ocean

- Panda
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post #11 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-07-2007, 07:45 AM
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Re: re: Confidence and Arrogance...finding true confidence??


Quote:
Originally Posted by Halcyon
I think I'm an extrovert naturally but I hide it because I fear the ridicule I've received in the past (Elementary school etc bullying) So I've held that side of me back and I'm scared to let loose and be child like...
That's another argument entirely, I often think the same of myself, just the SA holding me back.

Anyways

Quote:
...there have been times when I'll let my guard down and just let loose and in that moment I THINK i'm aware but then i'll look back and know I was acting on arrogance and then really regret some of the things I did and the ways i acted...Embarrassing and fear of going back around those people
You have hit something else here. The post mortem. You show a heavy emphasis on going back to what you done, mulling it over, picking out the negatives, feeling the embarrasment, then no doubt going back to the start and going through it all again?

Sure, we learn from our mistakes, and some amount of past reflection is healthy. Going through our past experiences with a fine tooth comb and a negative bias, is not. That's a big problem for almost everyone with social anxiety and it's certainly one of the driving forces.

Don't get me wrong, I understand the logic. You go through your past experiences and you seek solutions. What can you change, etc. Makes perfect sense, huh? What I will say may sound very counter-intuitive, and it is, but it can make a huge difference. The very act of going back to your problems, analysing them and seeking solutions, for the most part keeps you locked into your problems. You get what you focus on. You focus on your problems, what do you get? You are what you think.

Forget about your problems, focus on what you want. It's ok to reflect once in a while, but doing it all day is nothing but massochism. Go over them once, then leave it, once is enough. Or even give yourself an exercise and see how many positives you can spot in there.

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post #12 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-07-2007, 01:39 PM Thread Starter
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Re: re: Confidence and Arrogance...finding true confidence??


Quote:
You have hit something else here. The post mortem. You show a heavy emphasis on going back to what you done, mulling it over, picking out the negatives, feeling the embarrasment, then no doubt going back to the start and going through it all again?
LOL Yes, maybe all throughout the day depending on how important I feel the person(s) who I acted out around area to me...like that girl i had a crush on, i would think about her all day at times, felt so sick of it because i couldn't think clearly, it always resorted back to her. You know, now that I just said that, the other people who surrounded me during that evening and saw me act out and I don't feel much shame around, its because i haven't placed them up on this pedestal like i had her! And the way I think about how other people MIGHT find me embarrassing in their thoughts, well I doubt they even will remember it, probably like her...lesson learned

Quote:
Sure, we learn from our mistakes, and some amount of past reflection is healthy. Going through our past experiences with a fine tooth comb and a negative bias, is not. That's a big problem for almost everyone with social anxiety and it's certainly one of the driving forces.

Don't get me wrong, I understand the logic. You go through your past experiences and you seek solutions. What can you change, etc. Makes perfect sense, huh? What I will say may sound very counter-intuitive, and it is, but it can make a huge difference. The very act of going back to your problems, analysing them and seeking solutions, for the most part keeps you locked into your problems. You get what you focus on. You focus on your problems, what do you get? You are what you think.

Forget about your problems, focus on what you want. It's ok to reflect once in a while, but doing it all day is nothing but massochism. Go over them once, then leave it, once is enough. Or even give yourself an exercise and see how many positives you can spot in there.
I'll try, I've always found it kind of therapeutic to look back and remember how I felt in those situations to learn and gain perspective from them but going over them too much like you mentioned also confuses and changes the reality of it...i start to live in those little worlds and come up with new interpretations each time and start to believe them .

Maybe I'll just jot it down in my journal when the memory of it is freshest

Quote:
Acceptance seems so easy, but I'm finding it really difficult to do. Does anybody have any insights on how to go about that? It's hard to let go of the past and be comfortable around others. Everywhere I go I think that people are judging me and I feel inferior sigh

How do confident people think when they are out in the world? Do they ever worry about what other's are thinking? Do they ever judge themselves or others harshly? Do they ever worry that they are going to do or say something stupid and embarrass themselves? I think that maybe if I had some insight on how a confident person 'thinks', I would be able to understand better what I need to do to gain some confidence. Does that make any sense?
It does make sense because I think in the same way.

Acceptance, what have I learned to be okay about myself so far...I'm sensitive, I'm shy, I'm goofy, I'm quiet, .....hehe i don't know if this is helping you out tho uhhhh I don't know if others remember the things we do as much as we THINK we do...I know when somebody does something embarrassing around me I'm not usually keeping that thought in my head of all their details....I DO WITH MINE but them, not really.

I think trying to mimic how someone else thinks and then trying to act out like them just makes us get further away from accepting ourselves, i see where you're coming from tho because I would think much of the same as you would....if I could only know how he thought about this or that then i would try to make myself think this way and then act out like that....we're all different and I don't think its healthy to do that

We need to take our qualities and embrace them even if they are different from the "norm"

listen in between your notes
theres something been going on
while you were busy taking notes
and look in between your moments
theres something good happening
its good to sometimes
slow it down

get your head out from those mags
and websites who try to
shape your style
take a risk just for yourself
and wade into the deep end of the ocean

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post #13 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-08-2007, 05:00 PM
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re: Confidence and Arrogance...finding true confidence???


Very insightful thoughts guys, one of the better discussions I believe I've read on the forum so far

My experiences in the past i have tried to act like people around me (even characters from movies) I thought to be "confident", think/talk like them, etc. which is a terrible road to follow b/c like you already said, it gets further way from feeling comfortable with just our selves. Honestly, I think a lot of comes jealousy we feel b/c other people feel confident/comfortable in situations we can't imagine our selves being comfortable in. turn that jealousy into something constructive and see what happens...like something "wow that is really cool he/she came up with that idea or joke." feel positive for that person, or if your reaction is a negative one then that is ok too. Also realize although this person maybe very confident, they also make mistakes constantly, just like you and I. They even probably have times where they are completely not confident at something. Not necessarily trying to make your self better than that person but at equal measure...we are all human. This tends to help me get over the "wow i wish i could be like that" mentality.

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post #14 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-09-2007, 06:37 AM
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re: Confidence and Arrogance...finding true confidence???


yes... i think you're onto something major there... a kind of spirituality or as it's sometimes called 'relational consciousness', a sense of everyone being interconnected. the more compassion you have, for yourself and others, the more you can reduce suffering.
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post #15 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-09-2007, 07:31 AM
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True confidence comes from believing in yourself, arrogance is just a concious way to hide the fact that you arent confident
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post #16 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-09-2007, 09:05 AM
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re: Confidence and Arrogance...finding true confidence???


Halcyon and Grantonio,

You guys are right about trying to act like yourself instead of someone else, I guess I'm just frustrated with having no confidence for so long. So it all boils down to feeling comfortable in your own skin, and not caring about what others think about us. To me that just seems like such a HUGE step to make - going from one extreme to the other.

Mico,

That's a good point about mulling over the past and overanalyzing things that happened and what people have said. It just brings back negative feelings. I have recently ordered a book called The Power of Now (there are lots of good reviews about it on the self help resources forum). I have to admit that I am guilty of thinking about what happened in the past. Have you had some success with not thinking about the past so much and noticing a change in your attitude and confidence level? I think you are right that we should try to focus on goals we can accomplish - that is certainly a good distraction!

Stifstef,

I like your idea about doing things that you like, because you are right that it puts you in a good mood. I just need to find something I like that involve other people! Do any of you guys have hobbies (or likes) that involve others?

Westpark and GaryUranga,

That's an interesting thought, that arrogant people are really people who are trying to hide that they have confidence issues. I've never really thought of those people that way before. I have always wondered (and assumed) how arrogant people got so much confidence in the first place!


I read something interesting on a website that I thought I'd share with you guys. Acceptance is contrasted with resistance. I thought that acceptance meant something different, although I couldn't tell you exactly what I thought it meant because I found it such a difficult concept to wrap my head around. When I read that, I found that I finally had some understanding of what it is that I was having so much difficulty with. I have been resisting myself. Halcyon do you think that makes sense too? I find it much easier to understand "stop resisting who you are" than to say "accept yourself for who you are" (rotten backwards brain )

Do you guys think that repeating affirmations daily would help at all? (I just need to stop thinking it's a joke, all I can picture is Stuart Smalley ) Maybe we just need to take baby steps and make some slow steady progress.
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post #17 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-09-2007, 09:50 AM
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Re: re: Confidence and Arrogance...finding true confidence??


Quote:
Originally Posted by Halcyon
I'll try...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Yoda
There is no try.

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post #18 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-10-2007, 12:53 AM
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re: Confidence and Arrogance...finding true confidence???


over 10 years i had SA...so I have to go over my CBT training every morning or else I am fuked. I guess you can call that a type of affirmation, but from my understanding, affirmations are more along about telling your self confident thoughts rather than proving you are confident.

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post #19 of 19 (permalink) Old 02-10-2007, 06:04 AM
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re: Confidence and Arrogance...finding true confidence???


Jaded_Jester:

My hobbies are storytelling and theatre and taekwon do. I do find it helps to have some regularly scheduled things so you can get to know some people who are into the same things in a way that's natural and comfortable. It's so much easier to be relaxed when I'm focused on an activity that is not just purely social. Also I don't mind going to social events set up by my kids' schools.

Everyone:

I have been trying CBT techniques too and while they help keep me on an even keel day-to-day I would really like to get closer to the root of my problems and see some real progress and fulfill some of my apparent potential... just generally make life a happier place for myself and my family. I have not seen much if anything on this forum about other types of therapy or self-help (well, I'm pretty new here), but recently someone at the U (a therapist I went to see) said I could try psychodynamic therapy with a group, the idea being to investigate the past and see how it relates to the way I function now... to increase my awareness of how I come across to people. I have 'faked it' (well, I thought I was being straight!) for so long and had such limited results, that I thought I'd try it. Anyone have any comment on that? Another of the goals of this kind of therapy is self-acceptance, which appeals to me as I seem to be having trouble with that one too!

-stifstef
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