What does it mean to be confident? Unabridged (v 1.1)Cite This SourceShare This

con·fi·dence      [kon-fi-duhns] Pronunciation KeyShow IPA Pronunciation


1. full trust; belief in the powers, trustworthiness, or reliability of a person or thing: We have every confidence in their ability to succeed.
2. belief in oneself and one’s powers or abilities; self-confidence; self-reliance; assurance: His lack of confidence defeated him.
3. certitude; assurance: He described the situation with such confidence that the audience believed him completely.
4. a confidential communication: to exchange confidences.
5. (esp. in European politics) the wish to retain an incumbent government in office, as shown by a vote in a particular issue: a vote of confidence.
6. presumption; impudence: Her disdainful look crushed the confidence of the brash young man.
7. Archaic. something that gives confidence; ground of trust.

8. in confidence, as a secret or private matter, not to be divulged or communicated to others; with belief in a person’s sense of discretion: I told him in confidence.

[Origin: 1350–1400; ME (< MF) < L confīdentia. See confide, -ence]

—Synonyms 1. faith, reliance, dependence. See trust. 2. Confidence, assurance both imply a faith in oneself. Confidence may imply trust in oneself or arrogant self-conceit. Assurance implies even more sureness of oneself; this may be shown as undisturbed calm or as offensive boastfulness.

—Antonyms 1. mistrust.


Confidence is a belief or faith in one’s abilities. What allows a person to feel confident? I know some people who are overly confident and others who lack any confidence whatsoever. Does confidence require abilities?  Must you fully comprehend your abilities before you can be confident?

Confidence develops through positive and usually successful experiences. It is learned. But, confidence can also be lost through failures and disappointments.

I understand that the economics of confidence require a surplus of  successful, rewarding attempts at life’s endeavors.

So, what do we do when life simply sucks?

For a confident person, you can become keenly aware of misfortune. Your bankroll of confidence can be spent on fruitless things. Squandered. How do you replenish that cache?

Does confidence in one area convey to another. For example, simply because I am a good cook, can I be confident I am a good doctor? If I am a good doctor and confident in my skills and knowledge, can I be confident I am a good boss. Or mother. Or wife. Or daughter? How do we tell the difference between confidence and delusion?

I think it boils down to faith. The definition even says…..a faith in one’s abilities. So, ultimately, we must have faith before we can be confident.

When diagnosed with low confidence, the treatment should be aimed at increasing FAITH. Once faith is strengthened, confidence follows. A lack of confidence is a symptom, not the disease.

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