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6 Signs People Have Low Self-Esteem but Seem Confident

6 Signs People Have Low Self-Esteem but Seem Confident

In today’s world, you must be confident in order to survive. It’s something you absolutely cannot fake. People see right through pseudo-confidence, no matter how you try to mask it. More importantly, self-esteem comes not from what others think of you, but rather from what you think of yourself. Being untruthful to yourself ultimately leads to incredibly low self-esteem and self-worth. The following are examples of people who may appear confident, but in truth are incredibly diffident.

They always look their best in public

I’m not saying that all people who dress well are hiding low self-esteem. However, people who feel the need to take an hour to get ready just to go get milk and eggs obviously are uncomfortable with how other people perceive them. You might think that by going overboard with your appearance you’re making others jealous, but all you’re really doing is wasting your own time. In the real world, nobody cares what you look like at Shop Rite. They just want to get their groceries and get back home.

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They always look busy in public

I think everyone’s guilty of this one at some point in their lives. You’re waiting for a bus, or for your friend to show up. You feel silly just staring into space, so you pick up your phone and pretend to have found something interesting to read. When really all you’re doing is playing Crossy Road. Why do we do this? Why do we care if passer-bys think we look awkward by just sitting and waiting? There really is no reason to pretend we’re busy just for the sake of looking busy. Again, people with low self-esteem tend to care what others think about them, so much so that they give them something to think about at all times.

They assume they know what others think… because it’s how they think

This goes along with the previous entries. People with low self-esteem are obsessed with keeping up appearances. The key word in that sentence is “appearances.” They strive to appear to be something they’re not. Using the previous examples, these hypothetical people actually believe that others have the time to observe and judge them. It’s really just a reflection of themselves. The person who gets dressed up to go to the gas station will be the first to judge someone who wore sweats and a raggy shirt to the same place. The person who pretends to be doing something important on their phone is the first to call attention to the person who’s sitting and waiting patiently. In actuality, the people dressed in rags are the truly confident ones, because they really don’t care at all about what anyone else thinks about them.

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They use coping and escape mechanisms to handle stress

Confident people handle stress by dealing with the situation and growing from it. People with low self-esteem handle stress by drinking, smoking, or engaging in otherwise risky behaviors that are detrimental to themselves and those around them. For some, this vicious cycle never ends. They get stressed out, so they get wasted. Then they wake up even more stressed due to lack of sleep and a hangover… and the problem hasn’t even gone away. So what do they do? Head for the fridge. If we could just learn to face our troubles head on, we would realize that dealing with bad situations is much easier than avoiding them.

They’re dishonest with others and themselves

Those that are confident have nothing to hide, and therefore are always truthful. Their less-confident counterparts, on the other hand, may be ashamed of something within themselves, and are more prone to telling lies or exaggerating truths. As with everything we’ve spoken about, this is only a reflection of oneself. The better thing to do would be to be honest with yourself, and work toward changing the aspects of your life that you’ve become unhappy with. Trying to bury them is not productive, and simply does not work.

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They exhibit arrogance, not confidence

There is a huge difference between a confident person and an arrogant one. Confident people can back up their boasts with actions, while arrogant people believe they know it all, yet never put their money where their mouth is. Arrogant people will be the first to point out other people’s flaws, but confident people will be the ones to help those people succeed. Arrogance is not being self-confident; it’s being self-centered. While arrogant people always look for how they can improve their world, confident people constantly look to how they can improve the world around them.

Featured photo credit: Pixabay via pixabay.com

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Matt Duczeminski

A passionate writer who shares lifestlye tips on Lifehack

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Published on May 4, 2021

How To Spot Fake People (And Ways To Deal With Them)

How To Spot Fake People (And Ways To Deal With Them)

They say we are the average of the five persons we spend the most time with. For a minute, consider the people around you. Are they truly who your “tribe” should be or who you aspire to become in the future? Are they really genuine people who want to see you succeed? Or are they fake people who don’t really want to see you happy?

In this article, I’ll review why it is important to surround yourself with genuine individuals—the ones who care, bring something to our table, and first and foremost, who leave all fakeness behind.

How to Spot Fake People?

When you’ve been working in the helping professions for a while, spotting fake people gets a bit easier. There are some very clear signs that the person you are looking at is hiding something, acting somehow, or simply wanting to get somewhere. Most often, there is a secondary gain—perhaps attention, sympathy, or even a promotion.

Whatever it is, you’re better off working their true agenda and staying the hell away. Here are some things you should look out for to help spot fake people.

1. Full of Themselves

Fake people like to show off. They love looking at themselves in the mirror. They collect photos and videos of every single achievement they had and every part of their body and claim to be the “best at what they do.”

Most of these people are actually not that good in real life. But they act like they are and ensure that they appear better than the next person. The issue for you is that you may find yourself always feeling “beneath” them and irritated at their constant need to be in the spotlight.

2. Murky in Expressing Their Emotions

Have you ever tried having a deep and meaningful conversation with a fake person? It’s almost impossible. It’s because they have limited emotional intelligence and don’t know how they truly feel deep down—and partly because they don’t want to have their true emotions exposed, no matter how normal these might be.

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It’s much harder to say “I’m the best at what I do” while simultaneously sharing “average” emotions with “equal” people.

3. Zero Self-Reflection

To grow, we must accept feedback from others. We must be open to our strengths and to our weaknesses. We must accept that we all come in different shapes and can always improve.

Self-reflection requires us to think, forgive, admit fault, and learn from our mistakes. But to do that, we have to be able to adopt a level of genuineness and depth that fake people don’t routinely have. A fake person generally never apologizes, but when they do, it is often followed with a “but” in the next breath.

4. Unrealistic Perceptions

Fake people most often have an unrealistic perception of the world—things that they want to portray to others (pseudo achievements, materialistic gains, or a made-up sense of happiness) or simply how they genuinely regard life outside themselves.

A lot of fake people hide pain, shame, and other underlying reasons in their behavior. This could explain why they can’t be authentic and/or have difficulties seeing their environment for the way it objectively is (both good and bad).

5. Love Attention

As I mentioned earlier, the biggest sign that something isn’t quite right with someone’s behavior can be established by how much they love attention. Are you being interrupted every time you speak by someone who wants to make sure that the spotlight gets reverted back to them? Is the focus always on them, no matter the topic? If yes, you’re probably dealing with a fake person.

6. People Pleaser

Appreciation feels nice but having everyone like you is even better. While it is completely unrealistic for most people to please everyone all the time, fake people seem to always say yes in pursuit of constant approval.

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Now, this is a problem for two reasons. Firstly, these people are simply saying yes to things for their own satisfaction. Secondly, they often end up changing their minds or retracting their offer for one reason or another (“I would have loved to, but my grandmother suddenly fell ill.”), leaving you in the lurch for the 100th time this year.

7. Sarcasm and Cynicism

Behind the chronic pasted smile, fake people are well known for brewing resentment, jealousy, or anger. This is because, behind the postcard life, they are often unhappy. Sarcasm and cynicism are well known to act as a defense mechanism, sometimes even a diversion—anything so they can remain feeling on top of the world, whether it is through boosting themselves or bringing people down.

8. Crappy friend

Fake people are bad friends. They don’t listen to you, your feelings, and whatever news you might have to share. In fact, you might find yourself migrating away from them when you have exciting or bad news to share, knowing that it will always end up one way—their way. In addition, you might find that they’re not available when you truly need them or worse, cancel plans at the last minute.

It’s not unusual to hear that a fake person talks constantly behind people’s backs. Let’s be honest, if they do it to others, they’re doing it to you too. If your “friend” makes you feel bad constantly, trust me, they’re not achieving their purpose, and they’re simply not a good person to have around.

The sooner you learn to spot these fake people, the sooner you can meet meaningful individuals again.

How to Cope With Fake People Moving Forward?

It is important to remind yourself that you deserve more than what you’re getting. You are worthy, valuable, precious, and just as important as the next person.

There are many ways to manage fake people. Here are some tips on how to deal with them.

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1. Boundaries

Keep your boundaries very clear. As explained in the book Unlock Your Resilience, boundaries are what keep you sane when the world tries to suffocate you. When fake people become emotional vampires, make sure to keep your distances, limit contact, and simply replace them with more valuable interactions.

2. Don’t Take Their Behavior Personally

Sadly, they most likely have behaved this way before they knew you and will continue much longer after you have moved on. It isn’t about you. It is about their inner need to meet a void that you are not responsible for. And in all honesty, unless you are a trained professional, you are unlikely to improve it anyway.

3. Be Upfront and Honest About How You Feel

If your “friend” has been hurtful or engaged in behaviors you struggle with, let them know—nicely, firmly, however you want, but let them know that they are affecting you. If it works, great. If it doesn’t, you’ll feel better and when you’re ready to move on, you’ll know you tried to reach out. Your conscience is clear.

4. Ask for Advice

If you’re unsure about what you’re seeing or feeling, ask for advice. Perhaps a relative, a good friend, or a colleague might have some input as to whether you are overreacting or seeing some genuine concerns.

Now, don’t confuse asking for advice with gossiping behind the fake person’s back because, in the end, you don’t want to stoop down to their level. However, a little reminder as to how to stay on your own wellness track can never hurt.

5. Dig Deeper

Now, this one, I offer with caution. If you are emotionally strong, up to it, guaranteed you won’t get sucked into it, and have the skills to manage, perhaps you could dig into the reasons a fake person is acting the way they do.

Have they suffered recent trauma? Have they been rejected all their lives? Is their self-esteem so low that they must resort to making themselves feel good in any way they can? Sometimes, having an understanding of a person’s behavior can help in processing it.

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6. Practice Self-Care!

Clearly, putting some distance between the fake person and yourself is probably the way to go. However, sometimes, it takes time to get there. In the meantime, make sure to practice self-care, be gentle with yourself, and compensate with lots of positives!

Self-care can be as simple as taking a hot shower after talking to them or declining an invitation when you’re not feeling up to the challenge.

Spotting fake people isn’t too hard. They generally glow with wanna-be vibes. However, most often, there are reasons as to why they are like this. Calling their behavior might be the first step. Providing them with support might be the second. But if these don’t work, it’s time to stay away and surround yourself with the positivity that you deserve.

Final Thoughts

Remember that life is a rollercoaster. It has good moments, tough moments, and moments you wouldn’t change for the world. So, look around and make sure that you take the time to choose the right people to share it all with.

We are the average of the five people we spend the most time with, so take a good look around and choose wisely!

More Tips on Dealing With Fake People

Featured photo credit: Priscilla Du Preez via unsplash.com

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