The Difference Between Cockiness and Confidence

There's a fine line between being confident and being cocky. They're almost the exact same thing, but there's a very tiny, let's say, a 1 degree difference. And that 1 degree can very easily make someone think you're the definiton of awesomeness OR it can make them full on hate you. I doubt most of y'all would prefer the latter over the former (those of you who would - cool, whatever floats your goat).

Let's look at the official definitions of both:

  • COCKY - arrogant; pertly self-assertive; conceited
  • CONFIDENT - sure of oneself; having no uncertainty about one's own abilities, correctness, successfulness, etc.; self-confident; bold

Which one sounds better? Obviously the second one. But, looking at those definitons, it can be seen how one could be mistaken for the other. The difference is really quite transparent, not that easy to see, and for this reason I felt the need to dig deeper into the topic. I'd like to share my personal thoughts on the matter and what REALLY is the difference between the two. It's actually pretty damn simple, believe it or not.

First things first.

What is confidence?

I personally think that the simple way to define confidence is when someone can acknowledge all of their strengths; having a realistic view of who you are; being proud of the assets that you have. I'm sure every person can name at least one thing they're very good at, something the excel at. There's nothing wrong with being fully aware of your abilities, but, when I say that, it brings up the question...

When does confidence become cockiness?

I see cockiness as overly bragging about something that you don't have bragging rights for. As a matter of fact, cocky people are acually very insecure. People who are cocky feel like they have to prove something to everyone. However, if someone's confident, they don't have to, because they're comfortable with themselves (that's the great thing about being confident - you're comfortable with yourself, who doesn't want that?).

The Difference Between Cockiness and Confidence

How to avoid being cocky?

I imagine cocky is not how most people wish to label themselves. The key to being confident instead of cocky, like I said before, is being comfortable with yourself. How to do that? Well, you just gotta find a place within yourself where you're just comfortable. Maybe pretend that other people are nonexistent for a bit. If no one else exists, there's nobody you can brag to. Catch that feel, apply it to yourself and try to embrace it to the best of your abilities. Stop feeling like you need to impress others. Because you don't. Trust me, by trying so hard to impress everyone around you, you're actually doing the opposite. Just take a breath, chill, be more laid-back, focus on something else. Don't push things about yourself down people's throats. Actually, acknowledging that you're cocky rather than confident is the first step. If you can do that, the rest shouldn't be THAT hard.


Hope this makes sense.

Good luck in changing your ways, cocky ones! 🐯


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What Guys Said 22

  • Great take! I think an observation I've made is confidence is an outward expression of being secure with oneself. Whereas cocky arrogance is a product of underlying insecurities, needing to prove oneself against others, etc.

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  • cockiness is one of those traits immature girls love because at that stage they're insecure so if a guy is overly sure of himself that can be comforting and a turn on.

    a real woman i think can see through this and just wants a man who fully accepts himself.

    it takes us guys time as well to realize we want a woman who's real and comfortable with herself and not just a girl who's cocky enough to have tits and ass hanging out.

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  • Well I just tend to say this:

    Confidence means you don't doubt yourself too much

    Arrogance is when you're a dick about it

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  • I got a cocky

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  • Great take - I couldn't have described the difference better myself - My own personal rule of thumb is I like quiet confidence, being self assured and people accepting who they are.
    If a person has to tell you how self confident they are then unfortunately they are straying into cockiness and as you correctly stated are probably insecure underneath it all.
    Well done!

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  • I think you take was ok...
    I've always have said confidence comes from the heart, anything else does not...

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  • Which category, I fall in Miss.

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    • 😂👆😂👆😂👆😂👆😂👆😂👆 HAHAHAHAHAHAHHA you crack me gal. You crack me. I love that attitude, you hear me, I freaking LOVE it.

    • at least you broke the silence, it was killing me.

  • The problem with this is people who ARE cocky use this to continue to be cocky. When someone calls them out on it they go "Nu-uh I'm not being cocky I just have self confidence."

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  • Confidence is quiet. Arrogance is loud.

    (That said, girls will much rather be with a cocky guy than a shy, insecure one.)

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  • Yes very good take and precisely right. Be confident, value yourself. Don't be arrogant. In fact being a good confident person means not being an insecure arrogant cocky nutter.

    Well said!

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  • Confidence means recognizing when something isn't working and being flexible enough and have the knowledge to make adjustments.
    Cockyness is the inability to admit when something isn't working and repeating the same mistakes over and over, because you stubbornly can't admit you're wrong.

    I've met cocky people who were not at all insecure, but their fault is not being able to admit they're wrong when things aren't working. If you're always winning, why should you think you're wrong?

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  • Honestly, I'm not convinced there is a difference. It's one of those traits that you will either consider a positive (confidence) or a negative (cockiness/arrogance), depending on whether you liked the person to begin with (and whether you're still dating or have just broken up!)

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  • The part about cocky people having low self-esteem is especially true.

    There was a guy in my gym class who was a good tennis player admittedly, but he'd show how superior he was to the others so recklessly, so that I just walked off and wouldn't play with him. He was all about winning too, he wasn't in for the fun.
    He used to be very fat, his mother had died of cancer, he was not the brightest, and I knew him from kindergarten and back then he wasn't arrogant at all.
    I highly suspect his natural obesity made him become so cocky

    I used to play tennis and I rather found it funny to keep the ball in the match

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  • Confidence mean u dont give one fawk when people fawk with chu. Cocky is when u are showing off this SMEXY dad bod right here 👙👈🏼

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  • A very fine line indeed. Almost like you are walking a tightrope well said.

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  • Bad thing I don't have both

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  • Poor trumpet players.

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  • Cool Take, I never liked cocky people ;)

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  • Good take. Its just hard to be confident sometimes, there are tons of people out there who are good at making you uncomfortable with yourself.

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  • I swing my big dick everywhere I go; The last person who tried to stop me got flung into space, sup?

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What Girls Said 5

  • great take... cocky people are annoying af

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  • Yep, you are rigth, confident people are cool, but cocky people tend to be very arrogant and self-centered.

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  • THIS. A lot of guys don't seem to get the difference. So when it comes to guys interactions with women:

    Confidence is a guy being able to be upfront about his interest in a woman early on and not act wounded if he doesn't get the immediate response he was looking for. That's an attractive trait in a guy, and there are many times that I have reconsidered after first thinking I wasn't interested in a guy, because they handled my initial rejection really well. It signifies that the guy is sure about himself -- which is attractive.

    Cocky, is a guy making his interest known from the outset, but acting like he's entitled to have the woman be interested back or getting rude if she doesn't instantly give him the response that he wants. This is very unattractive trait and leads to me to think- what a d*ckhead.

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  • Great take! I love quiet confidence. Definitely need more of that with me.

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  • Great take! :D

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