How come some are confident without money, status OR looks?

Today I want to share a “WAIT, WHAT?!”-moment with you. (It’s one of those moments when you find out that something you’ve believed your entire life doesn’t hold true.)

I always used to assume that self-confidence is a product of having the right looks, money, and status.

Following that logic, what you need to become truly confident is to either to look better, make more money or earn more social status, right?

Well, if that’s true, why is this then the case?

  1. Why have I come across several good-looking people with terrible self-confidence?
  2. Why have I have come across even more not-at-all good-looking people with amazing self-confidence?
  3. Why do I have several wealthy friends (both self-made or rich parents) who are still awkward and lack confidence in social settings?
  4. Why do I know loads of people who live paycheck to paycheck who have an abundance of self-confidence and social status?

These observations reveal that money, looks and status don’t seem to be a straight path to confidence.

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What I learned from Jim Carrey and Benjamin Franklin

Last week I read a book about Benjamin Franklin.

What an inspiring guy. He had this set of rules that guided his life: Ideals of how he wanted to live. It was simple things – nothing that raises eyebrows.

Eat in moderation. Don’t be wasteful. Be just (etc).

However, it was his approach to the rules that stuck with me.

He constantly failed at reaching his goals. But to him, that wasn’t the point.

He wrote:

“Tho’ I never arrived at the perfection I had been so ambitious of obtaining, but fell far short of it, yet I was, by the endeavor, a better and happier man than I otherwise should have been if I had not attempted it.”

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What if you only had 6 months left?

A guy who lives in my house told me something that I still haven’t been able to fully process.

His best friend is 25 and lives a healthy life; he’s fit, active, eats well.


3 months ago, this friend learned that he had bone marrow cancer. What’s more, he was told that he had 6 months left to live.

He was offered chemotherapy. He declined because his chances are next to none anyway and as you probably know, chemotherapy has terrible side effects.

What would you do it you only had 6 months left to live?

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“Why don’t people have deep conversations anymore?”

I just got a question from a reader wondering why most of her conversations nowadays are just on a surface level.

I love this question because I have had this exact same problem myself.

It was when I moved to a new city, Gothenburg, some years ago (before I moved to NYC). I only knew one or two people there. They were into sports and having fun. I’m into deep conversations and philosophy.

I’ve never realized how much I craved these deep conversations. I felt starved. How on earth do I find people I can have meaningful conversations with?

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Manners we can steal from charismatic people

My mom’s visiting from Sweden. Yesterday, I surprised her with a trip to a gospel church as I know it’s quite an experience.

The choir at the Brooklyn Tabernacle.

For me, the fascinating part was how the pastor presented his stories.

The audience was spell-bound by what he said – or, to be frank, HOW he said it.

You see, if we’d write down what he said word for word, we’d see how WHAT he said was pretty basic and repetitive. It looked something like this:

“You will overcome.
We will all overcome.
You will overcome.”

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How to take a life goal from pipe dream to reality

When I was around 9 years old, my dad showed me a picture of New York City’s skyline. I couldn’t stop looking at it. The year after, when I was 10, I wrote a little book that I named “The Journey to New York”.

That day, I made the decision: One day, I would live there.

In reality, it’s hard to just move to another country like that. You don’t know anyone. You don’t know how you’re supposed to make a living. And how do you even get a permanent residence?

When I was around 20, I set the goal to be in NYC before I was 25 and run a successful business that helped people. (This was after I’d just read book “The monk who sold his Ferrari”.)

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How I stopped caring what others think

Let’s talk about how I stopped caring about what others thought of me and how you can apply this in your life.

For me, it started a late night out, now many years ago.

I was just beginning my journey of self-development. I was especially concerned about my lack of experience with girls: I had never even kissed a girl.

I always felt like that was something I had to hide and make sure nobody knew about. I worried a lot what others would think of me if they knew.

But this night was different.

I had been out clubbing with my friends and had to grab something to eat at a local hamburger joint. There was no table available, so I sat down by a middle-aged woman.

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Why some people are so popular DESPITE their looks

Today I’m going to talk about why some people are so incredibly popular socially DESPITE their looks (and without having anything else in life going for them at all).

You see, once I was at a computer LAN (Dreamhack, here in Sweden). There, I came across a woman who was both obese and short. There was nothing about her looks that was in her favor. Her cheeks and shoulders connected seamlessly. She resembled a squish ball.

Let’s be honest. People who are unattractive often have a harder time in social life.

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How anxious people can become truly self-confident

Have you ever come across people who only seem confident on the surface? Like if their loudness, dominant manners and urge to take the center stage are more about compensating for insecurity?

Often, the reason for their overly confident manners deep down is a lack of confidence.

Then there are those whose confidence instead feels grounded and authentic. These people don’t need to show off. They can let others take the center stage, and when you talk to them, they don’t have to talk about how great they are. Still, they’re the ones people end up gravitating towards.

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How to become less self-conscious when all eyes are on you

If there’s one thing I remember from school, it’s the terror of arriving in the mornings.

I remember clearly that walk over the school courtyard, feeling everyone’s eyes on me like lasers scanning my every move.

I used to become so self-conscious that it felt like I’d forgotten how to walk. I had to manually control every move my body made and was certain that now, people didn’t just look, they probably took notes and had discussions about what a strange breed I was.

It wasn’t until one of my last years in school that someone told me something that permanently changed how I viewed things.

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David has really done his homework on this site - much of the content is derived from psychological studies, and he takes care to explain concepts in a way that makes them easy to apply. Plus, his content is ethical and scrupulously avoids shady tricks or manipulative techniques.

Dan Wendler Creator of the 260.000+ subreddit /socialskills