Confidence versus Arrogance: What’s The Difference?

Do you ever worry about coming across as arrogant?

If so, that’s normal as there can seem to be a fine line between confidence versus arrogance.

You may be already building your confidence because you know that self-confidence makes you feel more attractive to yourself and others, and it makes you more successful at dating.

No surprises there.

But what about when women seem attracted to men who are out-and-out arrogant?

These are the guys who are essentially yelling,

Look at me, look at me!

Their eyes are on themselves, and they want everyone else to look at them also.

This can be frustrating because you want to be attractive, but you don’t want to have to resort to arrogance.

And sometimes in this world, it looks like you might have to.

But you DON’T.

Sure, some women do in fact like arrogant men.

But we’re not worried about those women. We wish them the best, but it’s neither here nor there what they want, because they’re not the kind of match you’re looking for.

Wise women, on the other hand, feel repelled by arrogance in men.

Arrogance is a turn-off to these women who can see through the veneer of bravado to the heart of a person.

Arrogance pushes a wise woman away, whereas deep and rich self-assuredness draws her closer.

Let’s compare/contrast these so that you can be crystal clear on the difference between arrogance and confidence!


What is arrogance?

The dictionary defines arrogance as “having or revealing an exaggerated sense of one’s own importance or abilities.”

Arrogance is not simply self-confidence in overdrive, though; it comes from an entirely different place.

Arrogance is rooted in (a) insecurity, (b) comparison with other people, and (c) overestimation of oneself.

Let’s explore each:


The challenge of insecurity

As for (a) insecurity, arrogance is a strategy of trying to deal with feelings of being less than, in order to avoid folding in on oneself. That part, at least, is admirable: the not-giving-up part.

The issue is that arrogance and insecurity are flip sides of the same coin, and that coin is a focus on the self that produces negative effects.

As conflicting as arrogance and insecurity may seem on the surface, they do go together. And the mix is volatile.

We’ve got two seeming opposites in the same jar, so to speak. This creates a lot of unrest within a person.

Arrogance isn’t accessing the self-awareness to really understand deep-down strengths and honest weaknesses.

Nor does arrogance feel comfortable or relaxed.

It’s impossible to feel relaxed when there’s so much to defend and prop up! It becomes exhausting, the only fuel being the passing illusion of more self-validation.

Blustering and bluffing its way through a conversation, arrogance is not concerned with listening to what others have to say, unless what others are saying reinforces that lofty view of oneself.

This insecurity is very tiring indeed!

And we all know what that feels like, as none of us is beyond arrogance. The key is to keep an eye out for it. ;)


The exhaustion of constant comparison.

As for (b) constant comparison, arrogance tends to try to feel good about itself at the expense of others, trying to one-up them either out loud or in the heart.

There is an obsession with being “over” other people, above them.

Arrogance may feel satisfied for a moment when someone else isn’t as talented, attractive, or whatever the comparison factor is…

But the next moment, someone comes along who may be more of any or all of those things, and then arrogance is at a loss again.

This is an exhausting hamster wheel.

There is no way to win when playing that game.

It never works.

It just creates a feeling of guilt, resentment, and distance towards others.

And it even creates distance towards oneself. This is because rather than acknowledging the self as a real and multifaceted human being, arrogance treats the self merely an object of, “Did I do good enough today?”


The pressure of overestimating oneself.

As for (c) overestimating oneself, arrogance misses the gratitude for life itself, for the gift of this body and heart and mind and life that we’ve been given.

This puts an invisible pressure on the self because at the end of the day, we are fragile in so many ways, and overestimation of oneself denies the reality of that fragility.


Denying reality is not a winning strategy.

The reality is that we are dependent on more than just ourselves to keep us alive and thriving. We’ve been given the elements, the mysterious systems of our bodies, other people, and all kinds of things to support us.

So to refuse to acknowledge that something greater than ourselves has given us the gift of life itself is to put all that pressure on our own human backs, which is not only unreasonable but unhelpful.


The healing balm of compassion

It’s not enjoyable to be around someone who is acting arrogantly, unless you yourself are hoping to get something from them as well, and then it’s all kinds of things going on.

But that’s not the calm, deep, sexy confidence we’re going for together.

And whenever considering arrogance, it’s important to realize that every single one of us knows what it feels like to be arrogant.

I do, you do, we all do. We can all understand how it feels to be arrogant from our own experience.

So we can have compassion on ourselves and others regarding arrogance, while at the same time aiming towards self-confidence instead.

This compassion feels healing and helpful as we learn the wisdom of real confidence.


What is self-confidence?

Merriam-Webster defines self-confidence as “confidence in oneself and in one’s powers and abilities.”

Confidence is rooted in (a) knowing you can do it, (b) being thankful for what you’ve done already, and (c) having uplifting humility.

Let’s take these one by one:


The power of knowing you can do it

As for (a) knowing you can do it, your attitude coming into a task shapes a whole lot that follows.

Self-confidence doesn’t mean you think you can do it perfectly the first time. No one can do everything perfectly all the time!

Confidence just means that you know you’ll keep trying until you get there, if it’s truly important to you.

You’ll equip yourself with what you need, whether people or resources or training or whatever.

You’ll keep going.

This feeling of confidence is so freeing because you don’t need to pretend you’re perfect at everything already.

Instead, you can have a realistic assessment of strengths and weaknesses.

That way, it’s not like a pass/fail pressure like,

Oh my gosh, either I’m awesome or I’m awful.

That’s stressful and inaccurate!

Rather, it’s the feeling of being on a journey, where you’re taking it seriously, and you’re thankful to be able even to have this growth mindset.


The beauty of thankfulness

As for (b) being thankful for what you’ve done already, that plus determination fuels your excitement about what’s next.

When you’re learning as you go and taking responsibility for yourself every step of the way, confidence in certain areas increases over time, as you reach success and proficiency in that area.

Knowing that this is the shape of things, and being thankful for what you’ve already accomplished, even if it’s so small compared to what’s ahead of you, feels awesome.

It gives you a feeling of peace with yourself.

This peace makes you comfortable in your own skin, and others feel drawn to you as a result.


You become quite attractive when you think this way.

When you understand that the chips will fall where they may in terms of jelling with someone you meet, then you can more easily let go of attachment to outcome.

Sure, it isn’t always going to work out, and that’s okay because ultimately, you want a date to like you for who you are not for a facade that you can’t maintain.

You can cultivate self-confidence by coming into a knowing that you can do anything you put your mind to, without any sense of arrogance, gratitude for what you’ve already been able to do, along with the humility to ask for help when you need it.

Humility isn’t a sign of weakness. It’s a chosen perspective that will help you grow as a person.


The freedom of uplifting humility

As for (c) having uplifting humility, this is a game-changer.

Humility is so often misunderstood as some kind of command to feel bad about yourself and to lack self-confidence.

It is very liberating when you understand what real humility actually is.

Uplifting, genuine humility means having a realistic assessment of strengths and weaknesses.


It’s liberating to acknowledge weaknesses and to seek to improve.

Everyone can improve, and humility makes that truth go down delightfully which enables quick growth and progress.

Interestingly, it takes humility to be open-minded enough to learn.

For example, just reading a book is humbling because it’s like,

Well, I didn’t know all that. I had no idea I was missing out on all that knowledge and wisdom.

But there are so many other books.  There’s so much I don’t know.

That’s humbling!


All these facets of confidence work together.

Confidence as a whole is made of these things, and as you live, work, and play with this kind of mindset, you simply get better at everything.

But that’s not a prerequisite for confidence; it’s just a subject-specific confidence enhancer.

Of course, your self-confidence in a specific area increases over time as you develop success in that area.

So the more that you practice something, you get more proficient at it and then your confidence increases within that domain.


Overall, though, self-confidence is a bigger picture than that.


Oh, well I can do this because I’ve set my mind to it and I can get myself the help that I need along the way.

This is a powerful way to live.



Confidence versus arrogance, they are two very different things.

Arrogance isn’t just exaggerated self-confidence; rather, it comes from insecurity, comparing yourself to others.

The, “I’m better than other people,” attitude is a losing proposition.

Arrogance pushes people away, and in that case, no one wins.

Self-confidence, though, is freeing and helpful.

It’s having realistic self-knowledge of your strengths and weaknesses, the humility to ask for help when you need it, and a self-assured understanding that you can do what you set out to do.

A self-confident man expresses gratitude for what he has and for what’s ahead in life.

He focuses on the positive, doesn’t complain a lot, and takes full responsibility for the direction of his life.

Overall self-confidence is not about knowing everything. It’s about knowing that you can do what you set out to do with grace, humility, thankfulness, and the peace that all that generates.


For further reading about how to develop and improve self-confidence…

Check out these resources:

    1. Introvert Dating Mindset: Getting Your Headspace Right
    2. Topics + Tips to Become a Good Conversationalist: Ultimate Guide
    3. Free Ebook on Finding Your Uniquely Attractive Vibe

And if you feel that it’s time to apply all this to your personal situation and develop in confidence especially in the specific phases of dating, we can help.

Remember, a man’s confidence isn’t developed by chance.

True confidence is built intentionally by steadily improving your perspective on yourself and the world in various life scenarios like work, social time, first dates, and more.


If you’d like personal 1:1 help with this …

Check out our personalized dating coaching program for introverted men who want to attract the right women for them and self-actualize in the process.

We would love to talk with you about this, so let us know if you want to get on the phone here.

Thanks for reading, and please reach us out at with any questions!

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Sarah from IA
Sarah is founder and CEO of Introverted Alpha; the top dating coaching company for introverted men; featured by Forbes, Business Insider, Cosmo, and more. Pick up your free copy of Introverted Alpha's 22-page ebook in the box below.

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