It’s true that self-confidence can do many productive things for you. However, it’s possible to step over the line where it benefits you and become too confident.
Overconfidence can lead to dangerous situations. It can damage you, both personally and professionally, and the fallout from these disasters can hurt your family as well.
What are these dangers?
Consider these qualities that can develop from overconfidence and lead you down a tortuous path:
1. Taking too many high risks. Are you taking unnecessary risks because you feel powerful and able to control them? These risks might be in your relationships, career, financial or physical, such as in extreme sports.
* Risks can’t be avoided completely, but overconfidence can convince you to take too many of them. At some point, you won’t be able to control the consequences of your risky behavior.
2. Inability to see mistakes. Mistakes can occur any time in your life, but overconfidence can make you blind to them. If you believe you’ll never make a mistake, then it’s time reevaluate your confidence levels.
* Mistakes can provide important learning opportunities. But ignoring some of the risks and potential losses could mean never being able to use what you’ve learned from them and benefit from the experience.
3. Blaming others. Overconfidence can lead to blaming because you feel like anything that goes wrong can’t be your fault. It always has to be due to someone else’s shortcomings or behavior.
* However, by blaming others, you’re risking your relationships and job. You’re also losing the opportunity to grow and learn from the situation. Responsibility is an important aspect of success.
4. Refusal to learn. You may believe that you’re done learning and have nothing new to discover. Overconfidence in your abilities and knowledge may prevent you from learning the very ideas or skills that will bring you success.
* Those who are successful advocate learning more, regardless of how much you already know.
* Learning is a life-long experience that benefits the brain and body. You don’t have to go back to school or take extra classes to learn. But knowing that learning never ends keeps you humble enough to potentially make more sound decisions.
5. Refusal to listen. Overconfidence may lead you to ignore the advice of others. You may also have difficulty listening to feedback or criticism.
* It’s important to listen to the comments that others make because they may have valuable insight. They may see an aspect that you’re missing. They may be able to help you avoid mistakes or formulate a plan that jumps you forward toward achieving a goal.
6. Cutting it too close. Overconfidence may make you cut things too close. You may arrive late to a job interview or miss a flight.
* Your inflated confidence levels may make you believe that everyone will just wait for you. The reality may differ from your expectations, and you may end up losing opportunities or dealing with serious consequences.
7. Predicting the future. Research has shown that overconfidence can lead to inaccurate predictions. For example, you may believe that a raise will be easy to get or your date will instantly fall in love with you.
* Your judgment may not be correct. Your overconfidence can make you ignore important elements of the current situation that affect your future.
It’s important to have confidence in your abilities and skills, but realistic expectations and ideas contribute to your wisdom and make life easier. Avoid letting overconfidence dim the bright future you can create with your unique talents.