How To Be Confident Without Seeming Like An A-hole


Is it possible to own your awesome without coming off as complete and total a-hole?

We all know people who are incapable of discussing their accomplishments or accepting a compliment without waxing douche-y.  And we also know people who deflect and downplay any positive comment till you want to scream “Fine!  I take it back!  You’re not actually funny or smart!”

Surely there’s a middle ground, right?

Sally and I both think so.  In the above video we talk about how to be confident without seeming like a jerk.  If you can’t be bothered to watch it (or don’t want to hear about how I went to the airport on the wrong day four different times) here are our tips:

1. Consider the people you’re interacting with

If you just got accepted to your first choice grad school and your friend has been wait-listed three times, now’s not the time to be loudly proud of yourself. 

2.  Be funny

Because we all like funny people.  People can be intimidated by Ive Leaguers and CEOs and authors.  We’ll be less intimidated by you if you can make a joke about your PhD.

3.  Return the compliment

They said something nice to you.  Acknowledge it and sincerely return the compliment.  Bonus points for complimenting people on the things they do, not the things they are.  “You’re a great teacher!” = yes.  “Your naturally curly hair is awesome!” = not so much.  Not because their hair isn’t awesome, but because they haven’t really done anything to get said hair.

4.  Express interest in other people
You’re confident and accomplished.  That’s awesome!  But everybody’s interesting.  Ask people questions about themselves.


5.  Be open about your own challenges and weaknesses

Even if you’re good at most things, we’ll like you a lot more if you tell that funny story about how you got put in remedial gym class in elementary school.

6. Expect you’ll like people and that they’ll like you
Because why wouldn’t you?  And why wouldn’t they?

Are you confident?  How do you express your confidence without alienating everybody?

8 Comments

Nadia

I have to step into your blog everyday, to laugh a little and learn a little. This was a great video. I think i'm pretty o.k. at all the points mentioned, but the last one… I just realized I've forgotten that. So, thanks for reminding me, perhaps I'll make some new friends now thanks to you lovely ladies. :)

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