The fear of being pretentious (vs. the desire to be confident)


Pretentious people don’t give a great image of themselves, because:

  1. They think they are important, but in an exaggerated way.
  2. They tend to show themselves…a lot.

For instance, many celebrity interviews have that common question: “How do you manage to stay humble when you have so many fans and marriage proposals etc etc?“.

In other words, how do you put off all the attention that you don’t really deserve?

I fear of being/becoming pretentious, but what I haven’t realised is that I also fear of being confident.

These two terms (Pretension/Confidence) are somewhat confusing, so let’s look up their definitions.

Pretension: a claim to dignity, importance, or merit.

Confidence: belief in oneself and one’s powers or abilities


Mmh…not quite the same thing.

My guess is that: if you’re insecure (like I am), then you want to have some kind of importance (like everyone else) BUT YOU ARE ASHAMED THAT OTHERS WILL DISCOVER THAT YOU WANT TO BE IMPORTANT.

Because that would make you feel like…a claimer of importance (a.k.a pretentious).

But you can be confident without being pretentious:

  • You can believe you’re important, without having to claim it. Or shout it to everybody in the airport. Or spam it x100 times to your friends by email.

Maybe confidence is just knowing that most people don’t really care about you. 

  • Contrarily to Pretension (= others should give you importance and merit).
  • Contrarily to Insecurity (= no one should give you importance nor merit, not even yourself).

Confidence is believing in yourself despite what other people think of you; therefore you don’t believe it when they tell you “You’re so perfect omg <33“, nor do you believe when they say: “What a stupid idiot you are“. Because you already know who you are, and others can’t enter your mind. That’s a quality that I wish to develop, and one that we should pay greater attention to.


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