Question submitted via Formspring:
“How can one be assertive and self-confident without seeming imposing or “better-than-thou”. Likewise how can one be humble and reserved without seeming weak or insecure?”
An excellent question!
Just today a friend asked me if it was better to seem confident bordering on arrogant in job interviews, since he was concerned that he seemed ‘too nice.’ First and foremost, it is nearly impossible to be ‘too nice.’ I am always nice and friendly to everyone that I meet; since I am absolutely certain that in this life you can always catch more flies with honey. However, I think the last thing anyone would label me as is lacking self confidence!
First and foremost, most of the time when someone is referred to as being ‘too nice’, it is usually because they are too apologetic. There is a difference between not wanting to inconvenience another person, and believing you aren’t worth their time or effort. The flip side to that, is most people who come across like jerks are so convinced of their worth that they aren’t worried about how they are making the people around them feel!
So, how do you walk this line? Real confidence comes from genuinely appreciating and loving yourself. When you have a true and genuine appreciation for yourself, it shows; just like it shows when you don’t. Some people hide by withdrawing into their shell, and some people hide by making so much noise you can’t notice their insecurity.
Loving yourself is also the secret of humility, since when you are no longer seeking external approval or validation, it is easy to let other people have the spotlight. You can say and do nice things out of the goodness of your heart, rather than what focusing on what that person can do for you.
This is also the key to having successful family and intimate relationships, since the extent to which you love yourself, is also the extent to which you can love someone else, or let them love you (love). It’s all too common to have someone who feels disempowered at work become a bully at home; or God forbid take out their frustrations on their children. So if you find yourself, or your significant other being irritable or aggressive in your relationship, that’s a good sign that they are feeling a lack of validation. But now you know that true validation can only come from within; no other person can come in and save us, we can only ‘save’ ourselves.
It takes time and effort to build up true and genuine self-love, confidence, and humility. You’ve spent your whole life being crushed into a certain mold, and it won’t be easy to escape. But in the end, you are magnificent. You have come a long way, and accomplished amazing things; 20 billion people have walked this Earth, but there has only ever been, and ever will be one you. If you can’t love, respect, and appreciate yourself for who and what you are, than how can you really expect anyone else to?
You are great, and I love you!
And if you love me back, click ‘share’ up at the top!
B. Dave Walters Writer, Life Coach, and Talk Radio Host
Find out more about me: http://about.me/BDaveWalters
Ask me anything: http://formspring.me/BDaveWalters
Pages I support:
Jesus and Buddha — Interfaith dialog
Gnostic Theism — Religion and Spirituality for the 21st Century (Join the Movement!)
Love One Another — A group for the coolest Spiritual people on the Internet!