Fake it till you make it is awful advice.
I’ve stormed, talked over, and rushed heads first into events that forever bolted the hair on my neck. People have a spotless bullshit detector, and if you’re not a serial psychopath, you’re probably not that good at bullshitting as you may think.
Most American students rate their social skills as above average, of which 25% think they’re the top 1%, according to a state-wide College Board study. In Social psychology, this phenomenon is called illusory superiority, and it touches on all aspects of human life, including driving skills, popularity, memory, IQ, health, immunity to bias, etc.
“Self-deceit is at first a warm refuge, and later a cold prison.” -María Jesús Torres-
While faking your confidence may get you to move, you’re risking the wanted results. People faking confidence often come across as overzealous, sleazy, prejudiced, moody, or plain obnoxious.
1. Confident people are not aggressive.
If you want to punch someone in the face, you’re probably not that confident in yourself. Insecure people are often victims of personal emotions, while confident people know how to control their impulses.
Confident people are proactive problem solvers instead of reactive hole diggers.
2. Confident people don’t deny issues around them
Insecure people have an astonishing capacity for denying everyday problems.
Insecurity needs constant reassurance that everything is just awesome at all times. Your partner asks you if they’ve gained weight is a good example. People want to make themselves feel better and search for reassurance to deny the obvious.
3. Confident people don’t give long-winded answers
Rumbling and giving unwarrantedly long answers is obnoxious.
Insecure people often lack the ability to stop talking when they’re finished with a thought. People dislike when you’re adding, “but,” “and,’ to make yourself appear better in a conversation.
Confident people get from point A to point B before letting the other person reply.
4. Not looking down on others to make yourself feel better
Self-aggrandizing superiority is a trait of highly insecure people.
Confident people are focused on their goals, actions, and making others feel better. If you’re judging everything and everyone around you, it may be a sign that you’re feeling insecure lately.
Confident people don’t ruminate about how others are bad. They have better things to do.
5. Highly-insecure people seek constant reassurance
Confident people question the world but don’t crusade against the facts that make them uncomfortable.
Questioning your surroundings is a sign of confidence when you're willing to accept the answers. Highly unconfident people seek reassurance for their biases, so they agree or disagree on how things make them feel. Insecure people may google a dubiously specific phrase to prove a point or confirm a belief. I.e., How speaking over others is actually a sign of high-confidence.
Confident people can pivot and change their opinion based on research because they know that certain beliefs don’t make them any less of a person.
6. Confident people don’t see the world as either/or
The black-and-white (either/or) conclusions seek certainty. Insecure people try to size up the world with a logical fallacy that something that isn’t great is automatically bad, denying that life has gray areas with sharp and round edges.
You may automatically assume you’re ugly if you have a bad spot on your face. Suppose you’re talking about political history and defending the British Empire as a force of ultimate good or renouncing slavery as something that happened 100 years ago. In that case, you may be sticking to the either/or logical fallacy, which makes you appear uncertain and controversial.
Confident people don’t argue logical fallacies.
7. Confident people don’t scream for attention
Acquiring controversies is a fantastic business strategy, as you may get from Donald Trump’s playbook, but it doesn’t come off as confidence in everyday conversation.
Deeply insecure people get high on social attention, no matter how toxic it’s for others. When you’re continually trying to provoke others to pay attention, no matter the expense of your actions, you’re screaming for attention.
Riding a bike at 90 MPH, with your hands in the air, looking to stun random pedestrians, would be a good example of deeply insecure people screaming for attention. The rider risks his life for a brief moment of someone looking in his direction.
Confident people know they good enough.