Is There A Difference Between Confidence and Self-Esteem?

If so, how do you differentiate between having high self-esteem vs. being a confidence person? Is it possible to have one but not the other?

  • Yes - there is a distinct difference between the two
    Vote A
  • No - they're basically the same thing
    Vote B
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Most Helpful Guy

  • Confidence is externally projected while self-esteem is the inner projection. You can appear confident you others and have love in yourself (low self esteem )

    • Have low value in yourself*

    • Show All
    • High confidence while low self esteem will generally put someone down while elevating their own status. Low confidence with high self esteem will have a high sense of value while being generally seen as reliable / capable but not capable of standing up for themselves or their position.

    • Awesome, thank you very much for MHO!

Most Helpful Girl

  • Yeah. You have self respect and self love - no one has to know about it, but it can project outwardly - then it translates like confidence to others.


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What Guys Said 6

  • At first I agreed with @bdbee. But after reading @Bandit74 and @FakeName123, I got the idea that although there is the distinction between internal and external, I can't feel both of them in opposite ways (high confidence on low self-esteem or vice versa).

    I think it is possible to feel both, but not regarding the same subject. Like, one can have high self-esteem about a particular subject that one knows is good at, and the way he displays the confidence may be low. But it is not about the confidence on the particular subject, it's about other aspects surrounding it, like not creating expectations in others, or being afraid of meeting deadlines in time. So one can be sure that "I can do it", but I don't know if I can do it as it is required from me, or may not even want others to know that they are capable of those thing due to shyness. (An example from my life: I want others to know that I'm good at something, but I don't want to be the one to show that to them, I just wish they'd know)

    On the other hand, one can feel low self-esteem, and the feel that they are not able to meet others' expectations, or won't be able to succeed in their life goals. But at the same time, they have confidence in another subject -> their image. Although they know that they can't do it, they live as if they could (politics for instance). They "dress for the job you want to have", thus portraying an image of confidence. But they're only confident in their image and the ability to convince others, not about the actual goals that deep down they know they're gonna fail due to the low self-esteem (and/or actual lack of skills)

    If this doesn't make much sense... it's ok, I wasn't all that sure of it while I was writing it either :(

  • I've always thought of them as being the same but I guess they could be different.

    I disagree with the people that say confidence is external. You can't "be" confident overall and have low self-esteem. You can "appear" confident but thats different from actually being confident. I've always thought confidence comes from within, that it is internal.

    So I think confidence is the degree to which you believe in your abilities or how comfortable you feel with your ability to complete a given task succesfully. Confidence can vary, you can be confident in one area but not confident in another. Self-esteem is how much overall value you see in yourself, how valuable you see youself compared to your peers.

  • Confidence is how you carry yourself with others. Self-esteem is how you value yourself.

    • Yes, thanks! My friend and I agreed on a description of 'a belief in your abilities vs. believing in your self.'

      If self-esteem is internalized, how can an observer differentiate between a person with low self-esteem & low confidence vs someone with low confidence but high self-esteem?

    • I think usually both go hand in hand. Exceptions to the rule.

      Low confidence with high self-esteem I would go as far as doesn't exist. Someone who has a high self-esteem has no reason for low confidence.

      Low self-esteem with confidence is possible in a certain context. For example a person having low self-esteem, but knowing they are good at a very specific thing/skill.

  • Kinda of not really.

  • Yeah I think so. You can have high esteem but low confidence.


  • confidence refers to your skill in relationship to something or someone

    self-esteem refers to confidence in yourself

    confidence is outwardly projected
    self-esteem isn't projected it just is - you.


What Girls Said 1

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