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To wonder how some people become so supremely confident and full of themselves?

(120 Posts)
MrsRhysMeyers Mon 17-Jun-13 16:28:19

And I mean this as a genuine question. I am fascinated.

I know a few people that are totally uber confident; they think they are more beautiful than others, and that they are totally great and that they are always right. Think along the lines of that girl in the Big Brother house that is spending 18k per month on rent!

What I find too is that super confident people manage to convince the world that they are beautiful/wonderful/amazing even if they are not particularly. And they want their own way all the time, and usually get it.

I'm wondering if it's down to being spoilt as a child, or having really doting parents that tell them every 5 minutes how beautiful and wonderful they are? Or if they're just born that way?

I would describe myself as a confident person in that I'm happy with myself and in my own skin. I'm not loud though, or the life and soul of the party, and I certainly don't think I am better than everyone else and that the world had better sit up and listen to me.

redrubyshoes Mon 17-Jun-13 18:35:48

I have a friend like this and I do laugh quietly when she talks about the problems of 'being beautiful'. In her wedding album there are THREE pictures of her and her new husband together. The rest are a VAST selection of her posing in full model mode and pouting at the camera and staring moodily into the distance. smile

All the uber confident people I have worked with are without exception crap at their jobs and nick other peoples ideas and steal thunder whenever they can. The sad thing is bosses fall for it most of the time.

Yes, you the total cow who won an award at the AGM I am looking at you - you stole, lied and cheated and I have met several variations of you over the years. Identical characters to a tee.

They tend to change jobs with monotonous regularity when they are about to be found out. This is also a character trait.

TheRealFellatio Mon 17-Jun-13 18:51:37

Is your friend beautiful though red? Because I have known so many women who mistake themselves as being beautiful when they are nothing of the sort. They seem to think that having an obsession with grooming, tanning and hairstyling automatically equals being beautiful, and it really doesn't. Some of them have looked like the back of a bus to be honest.

TheSecondComing Mon 17-Jun-13 19:01:19

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

PollyIndia Mon 17-Jun-13 19:03:13

I know people like this, and the thing is, perception is reality, so if they believe they are amazing and gorgeous and talented, then in their world, they are. So it doesn't matter if they are the only ones that think it, as they simply won't see what everyone else see.
As for how they become that confident, I have no idea... Constantly being praised when they are young, but also with an innate confidence and thick skin. Not very self aware or sensitive probably too.

TheRealFellatio Mon 17-Jun-13 19:06:34

It must be quite nice to be like that actually - better than the opposite I suppose! At least you know there's always someone to love you - even if it's only yourself. grin

MalcolmTuckersMum Mon 17-Jun-13 19:08:40

It's rarely the genuinely beautiful or talented or highly intelligent people who behave like this; but usually people who are quite average but seem convinced that they're better than everyone else

Yes. Exactly this.

FasterStronger Mon 17-Jun-13 19:12:35

some people have a more accurate self perception than others. IMO, people who have a fragile ego and cannot cope with the fact that reality is not as they wish it to be, and they live in denial that they are beautiful or a genius etc. etc. often they cannot cope with not being super at everything so construct a view of the world which most people do not agree with but cannot deviate from this path, as it would involve facing up to unpalatable truths.

I think really confident people know what they are good at and what they are bad at and happy with themselves knowing both sides of themselves and working with themselves as they are.

redrubyshoes Mon 17-Jun-13 19:14:21


Yep she is pretty but averagely so but is very photogenic. I love her but I want to scream when she talks about being beautiful and the problems it causes her.

She is struggling a bit now that her 13 year old daughter is a 5' 6" willowy blonde and men are looking at her (which we both find just horrible and weird) but she really resents the 'opposition' from her DD.

TheSecondComing Mon 17-Jun-13 19:15:48

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

FasterStronger Mon 17-Jun-13 19:21:53

^ lots of other people seem to agree with them^

I think it is easy to fall for someone's self perception. X and Y work for me. X is very confident in his abilities. Y is much less so.

i see X erode the confidence of Y. X over estimates his abilities. Y sometimes looks crumpled by it.

i am now encouraging Y to be objective and listen to what X actually says evaluate it himself - not just go along X's self perception.

(my view X has strong strengths and sizable weaknesses. Y is much more rounded, sensible, reliable, mature)

FasterStronger Mon 17-Jun-13 19:23:33

I find it bizarre that half of Mumsnet are carting chips on their shoulders about people they deem 'no better than that ought to be'

i don't think there are anything wrong being objective. if someone thinks they are beautiful when they are ok looking - it is very interesting and to me, says something worth understanding about them.

HumpheadWrasse Mon 17-Jun-13 19:26:18

In my experience I've noticed a strong correlation between those with genuine confidence and poise, rather than arrogance, and those who went to private school. I've pondered why that might be - presumably they don't teach them it in lessons?!

FasterStronger Mon 17-Jun-13 19:26:29

inconsistencies are the most fascinating things about people: in this case when someone's self-view is different than the majority's.

TheRealFellatio Mon 17-Jun-13 19:27:28

I am definitely jealous of people who IMO are beautiful - and doubly jealous if they are clever, talented and lovely to boot.

But I am bewildered by people who constantly blow their own trumpets about anything and everything, when I just cannot see that they have any more going for them than the next person, and sometimes less. As I said, self-confidence is a great quality, and self-confidence in itself can make someone otherwise average seem sexy or appealing to others - providing they don't over-do it and just come off like a deluded loon.

Soupa Mon 17-Jun-13 19:30:04

I am supremely confident but only those who know me well would know. I have no idea why so many people are full of self doubt when there is no reason to feel that way. I am well aware that I am average at some stuff and shit at other stuff but this doesn't dent my self belief. I had an ordinary childhood but was shy, unlovely and uncool at primary. I blossomed but by then didn't give two hoots about that kind of stuff and have lived happily ever after.

I really want my children to be confident but have no idea really how to help them. I have made some friends more confident and have caused others to feel less and less confident. It makes me a bit marmite.

redrubyshoes Mon 17-Jun-13 19:30:05


I understand totally where the OP is coming from. I have worked in environments as diverse as surgery, engineering, architecture and education. I have even worked with astronauts.

The quiet ones that hid in the background were the ones you went to for help not the noisy ME ME ME brigade. The quiet ones knew the info you needed and gave it quietly and without fuss.

The egos would only ever divulge information on two counts:

1) It made them look good

2) It made you look bad

I have only ever found one exception to this 'rule' I have applied and he was truly fecking brilliant and knew it.

FasterStronger Mon 17-Jun-13 19:30:23

RF - self-confidence in itself can make someone otherwise average seem sexy or appealing to others i think this is because people are drawn to strength in others - like it will rub off on them.

TheRealFellatio Mon 17-Jun-13 19:30:32

I am not going to pretend I think I am thick, or ugly, or shy, just so I don't offend people? Why would I?

I don't think anyone is suggesting we should all be doing that in order to not be seen as getting above our station, but there has to be a sensible middle ground - and I think most confident people do have that self-awareness. But the odd few are just jaw-droppingly in love with themselves in a way that's not quite normal.

TheSecondComing Mon 17-Jun-13 19:33:03

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

JennySense Mon 17-Jun-13 19:34:38

The BB contestant was living at the Savoy as a resident - that's why she was spending £18K

MrsRhysMeyers Mon 17-Jun-13 19:41:23

I think there is a fine line though between confident and total self-obsessed arrogance. I know loads of confident people, and I know a few of the latter too, and I know which type of person I prefer. It's duller than dull having to listen to someone say how wonderful they are all the time. Someone who is truly beautiful/clever/talented/amazing doesn't need to go around telling people about it all the time. They have no need to.

Elquota Mon 17-Jun-13 19:43:33

Some people get accused of standoffishness or arrogance, because they appear self-contained, but actually they're shy and don't know how to talk to others.

redrubyshoes Mon 17-Jun-13 19:44:13

There is confidence and deluded self confidence. I now work in a school where I deal with students who believe they are totally wonderful and therefore have to do no work because mummy/daddy does their homework and please do not think we are too stupid to notice and are untouchable. If they are given a detention Mummy/Daddy will phone and get them out of it.

A friend of mine is a lecturer at a university and has observed in the last ten years a massive increase in parents phoning up to demand why DD/DS did not get an A grade in their last essay because 'they worked sooo hard'. His answer is usually - no they did not work hard, they handed in their paper late or they are lazy fuckers or were hungover.

PollyIndia Mon 17-Jun-13 19:49:19

I totally disagree thesecondcoming. Most of my female friends are self confident and hot but they are good fun and warm and silly and above all, perceptive. The people I know who are just full of themselves don't have that level of self awareness and warmth so you can't ever really connect with them on any meaningful level. I don't think I am explaining myself very well, but I don't think you are either full of yourself or bitter and shrewish with no middle ground.

MrsRhysMeyers Mon 17-Jun-13 19:51:25

I agree, PollyIndia. The people that I know that are arrogant and overconfident have no self awareness, and I agree it is impossible to connect with them. Quite often they are users too, and are fairweather friends with people depending on what that person can offer them.

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