Often when a person is being particularly hard on themselves, their friends or even people they barely know will encourage them and remind them of all of their positive attributes in an attempt to make them feel better and/or boost their self esteem. However, when we encounter a person who is “overly” confident and speaks freely and openly about their skills and abilities, we are immediately turned off and make comments like “who does he think he is?”
Sometimes we find ourselves around people who let others walk all over them for the sake of keeping the peace or they choose not to argue because they are afraid of making others mad. To those people we say “you have to demand respect.” On the other hand, when you meet a person who walks around refusing to be disrespected and has high standards for the treatment they require of others, we look at them and say “and who are you again?”
I find that at the end of the day, most people do not want you to have low self esteem or high self esteem. They want you to hover somewhere at a level in the middle that they are comfortable with, or at least that they can agree with. For example, if you believe in yourself, there are some who will think you are confident, and some who will think you are cocky. People who see you as confident are fine with you acting however you see fit because they agree with your assessment of yourself. Those who see you as cocky think you’re trying too hard to be someone you’re not. Not because you aren’t that person, but because they don’t think you are. The same rules apply for those who do not think too highly of themselves. Some will say you have low self-esteem, while others will praise you as being humble. Who is correct?
When it comes down to it, not very many people in your life will be there for all the critical moments that shape who you are and who you are to be and any assessments they make about you are based on limited information. So what difference does it make if people call you cocky, confident, humble, or insecure? Afterall, who do you think you are?