I can’t tell you how many times I have been unable to spot the difference. It is so easy to see it when it is someone else, but like many things in life, we tend to miss it when it is ourselves. There is a big difference in the way we behave confidently from the way our own arrogance reveals itself. As far as I can tell, the many times my arrogance has stepped in, it was because I was putting effort into an attempt to display confidence.
By trying to come off as confident and in control, all I was doing was demonstrating to everyone around me that I had no clue. Rather than having the ability and humility to say “I don’t know” or “I could really use some help,” I projected what I, and I alone, thought was a confident mentality. In reality, the arrogance that everyone but me saw was a moment by moment episode of “I have no clue what I am saying or doing and I am clearly full of crap.”
It is ok to not know or not have the answers. Confidence isn’t about being insufferable or a know it all. It is about knowing your capabilities and being courageous enough to face adversity and change head-on. It is about understanding that you don’t control life, but you are in control of how you respond to everything. It is about never giving up. You don’t have to be arrogant in order to face hardship. Confidence is knowing that the failures are as important as the successes, if not more so. Confidence is accepting failure as what it truly is. Life’s greatest teacher.