What Is Confidence?

Confidence can be described as a belief in one's self and one's ability to succeed. Striking a healthy balance between too much and too little confidence can be challenging. Too much and you can come off as cocky and stumble into unforeseen obstacles when you overestimate your own abilities or fail to complete projects on deadline because you underestimate the time and effort they require. At the same time, having too little confidence can prevent you from taking risks and seizing opportunities—in school, at work, in your social life, and beyond. Projecting just enough confidence helps you gain credibility, make a good lasting first impression, deal with pressure and meet personal and professional challenges head on.

How Much Confidence Is Enough?

The best remedy for a lack of faith in one’s abilities is not blind optimism, but rather a more realistic look at the landscape. There is a big difference between astute and arrogant. Confidence that’s based firmly on what is actually known may not only be a better personal guide than exaggerated certainty; studies suggest it’s also more likely to earn the faith of others.


Optimism, Narcissism

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