How do some people become too confident

10 signs that only people with a lack of self-esteem have

Self-confidence is an important key to success, both in professional and private life. That much has become clear to us at least since the article "Strengthening self-confidence: Tips & exercises for more self-confidence". But healthy self-confidence is becoming more and more difficult nowadays between exaggerated insecurity and narcissistic cockiness. We will therefore help you differentiate.

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1. Does healthy self-confidence come from within or from without?
2. False self-esteem is loud, noticeable and, unfortunately, very widespread
3. But true self-confidence is invisible
4. 10 things that people with healthy self-esteem don't do
5. Conclusion: A lack of self-esteem has many manifestations

Does healthy self-confidence come from within or from without?

Psychologists are generally of the opinion that a healthy sense of self-worth must be independent of external influences, i.e. develop from within. However, this is a theoretical ideal case that is difficult to implement in practice.

Hardly anyone will develop a healthy sense of self can if he lacks any external success, social recognition or personal appreciation.

For this reason, when asked "Where do you get your self-confidence from?", Most people give external factors as an answer. It is interesting that men and women rely on different aspects, as a study published by Statista reveals:

You can find more statistics at Statista


You can find more statistics at Statista

The problem with "healthy" self-confidence is that it can never arise from external factors alone. Unfortunately, many people in Germany are already getting it inferiority complexes in their childhood with me on the way, be it culturally, due to educational errors or bad experiences. It can be assumed that more people in Germany suffer from feelings of inferiority than there are people with a healthy level of self-confidence. In the worst case, this manifests itself in a narcissistic to psychopathic disorder. And that these are by no means exceptional cases, we had to shockingly state in the article “Cabinet of horrors in the office: Is your boss a psychopath?”.

False self-esteem is loud, noticeable and, unfortunately, very widespread

Just those Psychopaths and narcissists but at the same time they are often those employees and managers who appear the most self-confident. They carry this seemingly unshakable self-confidence through the world, to the point of arrogance or arrogance. They are loud, flashy, but often charming and quite popular. They are almost perceived as fascinating by their surroundings - at least until they are allowed to look behind the facade and find nothing pleasant here. This apparently excessive self-confidence actually only disguises the agonizing inferiority complexes and the lack of self-worth below the surface. And if you can't show yourself respect, you don't care for your social environment either. Dealing with such an insecure person is unlikely to be pleasant in the long run, and professional success is usually more of a brief piece of luck before those affected drive themselves or the company into ruin. You can also read about this mechanism in the article "Cabinet of horrors in the office: Is your boss a psychopath?"

True self-confidence, however, is invisible

On the other hand, people with a healthy sense of self are more inconspicuous, more modest, maybe even the "gray mouse" in the furthest corner of the office. Since they do not (only) derive their self-worth from the recognition of their social environment, they are also less of a focus. However, those who withdraw too much may also suffer from insufficient self-confidence and want to walk through (professional) life as inconspicuously as possible.

One Recognizing people with real confidence, therefore needs a little practice and background psychological knowledge. Because at first sight it is invisible. The principle of exclusion is easier. We are therefore now telling you what people with a healthy self-confidence do not do and how you can instead expose those with artificially inflated ego. This helps you as a manager or HR manager in hiring real pearls instead of dangerous psychopaths, as an employee you can better assess your team members, customers or business partners. Even an honest look in the mirror from time to time doesn't hurt, so that you can work on yourself if necessary.

10 things that people with a healthy sense of self just don't do

1. Vying for attention:

Attention is the elixir of life for someone with inferiority complexes. He is always looking for recognition in his professional and private life. If his work is praised, he receives an award or is allowed to give a lecture and the entire room falls silent as soon as he takes the floor - then the narcissist indulges in happiness. Of course, if you are too modest in your professional life, you won't get very far. However, those who are downright addicted to attention are still very far from true self-confidence.

2. Eyeing the successes of others with envy and disapproval:

There is only room for a king on the throne. People with low self-esteem tend to be skeptical about the success of their teammates, friends or even family. Envy or resentment are predominant feelings. Anyone who does not grant you your successes and who can truly rejoice with you, perhaps even find something bad in every one of your achievements, will feel threatened by you due to a low level of self-confidence. Blasphemy or even direct confrontations can then be the order of the day, depending on the type of disorder. The main thing is that you don't push the king off his throne. Healthy Confidence? Are you kidding me? Are you serious when you say that!

3. Make hasty judgments instead of accepting:

If you have a healthy sense of self, that leaves you indifferent. After all, you do not judge other people, but are aware that everyone has to carry their own package and that you should accept people with their strengths and weaknesses. At least as long as you do not know their entire life story in all facets and thus the background for the respective words and deeds. Narcissists don't need such background information. They know everything (better) and since they are only too happy to see themselves as “perfect”, they expect the same from their social environment. You will look in vain for acceptance and tolerance with regard to a person's faults and weaknesses.

4. Evaluate other opinions as a personal attack:

Discuss with a narcissist? That would be a waste of time. As a rule, they stubbornly hold on to their opinion, regardless of all logical arguments. Changing his mind would be a real loss of face for the narcissist, because then he would have to admit that one of the colleagues knew something better than him. Instead, if necessary, he postpones meetings until he has convinced the last opponent. And if that doesn't work (anymore) with objective arguments, it goes over to the personal level. Other opinions or even criticism is seen by a narcissist as a personal attack.

5. Talk, talk, talk - but don't listen:

And for another reason, talking to a narcissist would be a waste of time: He's not going to listen anyway. People with low self-esteem tend to like to hear themselves talk: a lot, loudly, and endlessly. The eternal blasphemy aunt from the department next door probably likes to pull on everything and everyone because she then feels more beautiful, smarter or more successful herself. Or the head of department one floor above seems to have to compulsively give this boring, never-ending speech at every company party. Again, the reason is a lack of self-esteem.

6. Postpone decisions:

However, a lack of self-confidence does not always have to be expressed, as in the case of the narcissistic personality disorder, in the exaggerated ego or the constant striving for recognition. There are also those people who go through life completely insecure, do not trust themselves and rely on their social environment in their private and professional life. You seem completely overwhelmed with everything and quickly become a burden for you as a colleague, manager or even spouse. You can also quickly identify these people using five criteria. The first is: you don't make decisions or you put them off for as long as possible and try to pass them on to other people. This also makes them prone to pathological procrastination.

7. Compare yourself to others:

This manifestation of a lack of self-confidence also results in constant comparison with the social environment. Just that these people actually feel inferior. How do you notice that? Constant admiration for your successes, sentences like “I could never do that” or even specific self-doubts are part of everyday life.

8. Focus on the weaknesses:

This is because people with low self-esteem prefer to focus on their weaknesses and all the things that they - in their own opinion - cannot do. They carry an extremely negative self-image through life and therefore always remain below their possibilities in their job. The gray mouse in the furthest corner of the office could just as well have holed up here and will then still be sitting in the same corner doing the same work for many years to come. Such people often lack initiative or the courage to seize professional opportunities.

9. Ashamed to refuse compliments:

Just as a narcissist cannot take criticism, people with another form of self-esteem usually cannot accept compliments. Instead, they make them blush with shame. Instead of a simple “thank you” they bring up counter-arguments or counter-compliments. Or they question the honesty of the compliment and assume that you are serving a specific purpose with the kindness. Either way, complimenting someone with inferiority complexes can be quite exhausting. A simple and surefire indicator of a lack of self-esteem.

10. Avoid confrontations:

People with healthy self-confidence are good at assessing when a discussion makes sense and when they would rather turn their back on it. However, anyone who is fundamentally addicted to harmony and flees from any kind of confrontation suggests a lack of self-confidence. For outsiders, the observation of such a situation is sometimes just too hair-raising. "Why does he not stand by his opinion?" Or "Why is she always intimidated so quickly?" Are then typical thoughts that you certainly know from your own experience ?!

Conclusion: A lack of self-esteem has many manifestations

As you can see, a lack of self-confidence can manifest itself in two completely opposite ways. But there are not only narcissists and intimidated gray mice, but numerous intermediate forms and even people with actually healthy self-confidence often carry parts of one or the other disorder form. You cannot simply divide your environment into black and white, ie “healthy” and “sick”. But a little background knowledge and a little more mindfulness towards this topic will open your eyes for many people in your professional and private life. Maybe even with you. But the good news is: a healthy self-confidence is not God-given, it can be learned. How? We'll tell you about this in the article "Strengthening self-confidence: Tips & exercises for more self-confidence".

Photo credit: Photo by Jose A. Thompson on Unsplash

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