You have a quiet fierceness inside. It can whisper, it can roar. Don’t drown it out with arrogance or doubt. Believe in your inner worth, inner confidence, inner ability. Nothing will take you further than belief in yourself. Nobody will take you further than you. Roar from within.
I speak to everyone the same way, whether he is the garbage man or the president of the university ~ Albert Einstein
The number of people we cross paths with is infinite. We’ll never remember them all and they will never all remember us. But many will. And it’s important to recognise the imprint we leave them with. They won’t all be on the same level as us. They won’t all help us climb the ladder. They won’t all stay in our lives. But we should still treat everyone with the same level of respect, kindness and realness. Nobody deserves to be treated with disrespect, ignorance or arrogance. Let’s leave people with a warm feeling rather than a chill.
The concept of confidence can be misleading. Many of us confuse confidence with popularity. Many of us confuse confidence with ideal beauty. Many of us confuse confidence with arrogance. Although confidence can be associated with these, it isn’t reserved for the chosen few. It is rooted in humility, acceptance and love for who you are, no matter how quirky and flawed that is. Confidence can be quiet but mighty. Be your most authentic self, because that’s all we should ever be and aspire to be: ourselves.
At the very beginning of Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn, there is a moment where Amy contemplates how she should describe her occupation as a personality quiz writer to the professional, talented people she meets at a party: (A) “Get embarrassed”, (B) “Go on the offense”, or (C) “Take pride in your accomplishments”. Her answer? “C, totally C”.
It is interesting how we often shy away from acknowledging, talking about or even letting people know about our accomplishments, how ever small or big, because we are afraid of coming across as arrogant. I’ve heard it said that this problem largely applies to women, as men have a stronger ability to appear confident about their own strengths and achievements. Regardless, I think we need to strike a balance between modesty and arrogance. It’s tricky and I understand the anxiety about appearing arrogant or self-important. Perhaps it depends on who we are talking with, whether it be mentors or peers. Perhaps it depends on our intonation, whether we think we’re above everyone else or whether we are informative and enthusiastic. Perhaps it depends on our manner of speaking, whether we can laugh at ourselves or whether we can only talk about ourselves, without engaging with the other person’s achievements. Although modesty is a valuable virtue, we need to be aware of its more negative implications. It teaches us to not value where we are in life, what we’ve done and how far we’ve come. It teaches us to undermine ourselves and to belittle ourselves, both intentionally and without realising. We need to replace the idea about arrogance with confidence and passion. We need to feel comfortable and happy with ourselves. We need to confirm our own success and rely on ourselves to bring a sense of confidence. Nobody else will believe in us if we can’t even believe in ourselves.