Let’s cut to the chase: yup, successful people are confident. And the more successful people become, often the more confident they are. And more confidence provides more benefits. Studies show overconfidence increases productivity and causes you to choose more challenging tasks, which make you shine in the workplace. Overconfident people are more likely to be promoted than those who have actually accomplished more. Just speaking first and often — very confident behavior — makes others perceive you as a leader.
If confidence is so powerful, should we simply pretend to have it when we don’t?We all have a touch of delusion (everybody’s kids seem to be above average and not many people admit to being a bad driver), but when that goes beyond normal thresholds, things get problematic. Unfortunately, we don’t talk about this problem much. Everybody wants to increase self-confidence. That’s because confidence feels good. Confidence makes us feel powerful. But plenty of research shows that when we feel powerful it can be a slippery slope to denial and hubris.