Arrogance vs Confidence

This has been a topic that has been circling in my mind for a long time now. I am once again reminded of this from recent events in my life. It is somewhat a fine line between arrogance and confidence. When you’re so confident that you can achieve something, you tend to be a little arrogant. You think that you’re right, you think that you have it all figured out, you know that nothing can go wrong… until something did go wrong. Then, you attribute the failure to “arrogance”.

There are times where I am confident that I will be able to perform a certain task without help. I planned everything from A-Z including all contingency plans in case something goes wrong. I carry out the task perfectly, ignoring all advice or caution from others. I am confident that I know more than others. I am confident that there isn’t possibly anything that can go wrong with my diligent planning. I am confident that I will achieve my goal, if not over achieve what I set out to do.

Then, something happens. Things did not go the way I planned and neither did any of my contingency plans worked. I had no contingency plan for my contingency plan. I beat myself up for overlooking the smallest thing. When I finally accepted the failure, I blame it all on “arrogance”. I was so overly confident that I was arrogant about the whole task.

There are also times when you ask for more. Simple things like going to the restaurant and demanding good service because you know you deserve it. You are not settling for uncooked meat or small portions of food. You know that you paid good money for your food and you deserve the best service and quality in return. A lot of people do this – send food back. Unfortunately, having been in the service industry before, when you get your food exchanged, there might be some additional “stuff” in your food.

It is shameful, I know, but I am guilty for having once washed my hand through a running tap water into a glass when one of my customers demanded for an exchanged of a smudged glass. Since my first hand experience “adding” unwanted stuff on my food or drinks, I never send anything back in the restaurant anymore. But that’s a separate topic.

Confidence is good to have – when you know you can do something and do it well. When you know that you are the best for the job. When you know you deserve something. Over confidence however, interprets arrogance. When you think that you deserve more than the rest. When you think you are above everyone else.

I don’t think I am able to define these 2 words clearly. There is a very fine line, I believe, in these 2 words. When do you know that you’re demanding for something you deserve, or when you’re demanding for more than you deserve. How do you exactly measure your self-worth?

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