How to be arrogant

You need to be conscious of your body language. It’s advice you’ve heard time and time again. But, in most cases, you’re warned that your nonverbal cues could be making you look unconfident.

Shuffling feet, slouching, and small gestures–they’re all evidence of a lack of self-assuredness that you do your best to avoid. But what about the exact opposite? Are there any body language habits that could be making you look arrogant?

Yes, there definitely are certain movements and mannerisms that can make you look cocky and big-headed. Avoid these common ones, and you’re sure to send the right message.

1. Avoiding Eye Contact

“But wait!” you’re likely thinking now, “I thought lack of eye contact was one of those things that could make me look unconfident.”

And that’s true. But, depending on your demeanor, avoiding direct eye contact with people can also serve to make you look incredibly arrogant.

Why? Well, to put it simply, it makes it look as though you’re unwilling (and perhaps even too good) to actually engage in the conversation. Whether you’re scanning the room for a better opportunity or repeatedly glancing down at your phone, it can easily make your conversational partner feel unworthy of your time and full attention.

2. Crossing Your Arms

We all know that this isn’t necessarily the most approachable posture. Even if it’s subconscious, this stance closes you off from others. It makes you look inaccessible and perhaps even a little angry.

You don’t want to send the message that you’re uninterested or too good to be there. So open up your posture. It instantly makes you appear friendlier and more willing to engage in conversations.

3. Holding Your Chin Too High

This is another one of those times when you need to walk a fine line. To appear confident, you want to hold your chin up. But, take it too far, and suddenly you seem condescending.

People do not like to feel that someone is literally looking down at them when speaking. So make sure to strike a balance here.

Focus on keeping your head level. That way, you won’t run the risk of muttering to the floor, but you also won’t take this confidence booster to the extreme.

4. Pointing Your Finger

Remember when you were younger and your mom would lecture you to not point? There’s a good reason–it can easily come off as a rude and aggressive gesture.

Unfortunately, it’s a trap that’s a bit too easy to fall into. Whether you’re waving your finger around in a heated discussion or simply trying to direct someone to the appropriate place, pointing often feels natural.

But, if you want to stick to the safe side, do your best to avoid it and gesture with an open hand instead. It achieves the same result, without being quite so combative.

5. Checking Your Watch

This one should be obvious. However, if you’ve ever been engaged in a conversation with someone who continues to not-so-subtly glance at his wrist (or the time on his phone), you know that far too many people do this very thing.

Of course, this gesture immediately portrays a high level of boredom–as if you’re checking the time to see how soon you can escape. It’s another one of those habits that make you appear to think that you’re too important to be there. So do your best to avoid it.

6. Sighing

Yes, letting out a deep sigh can feel good every now and then–but that doesn’t mean you want to do it while someone else is speaking.

While you might not necessarily consider it body language, it’s still a nonverbal cue that can send a pretty strong message. Most people equate sighing with being uninterested, exasperated, or judgmental about what’s being said.

Even if that wasn’t your intention, a heavy sigh will almost always be taken the wrong way.

7. Forgetting About Your Facial Expressions

A completely deadpan face can cause you to look unconfident and unengaged, so you want to make sure to be expressive. But you also need to be careful about what expressions you use.

An obvious eye roll, a raised eyebrow, or pursed lips can all make your conversational partner feel uneasy and self-conscious. You’re better off keeping your facial expressions as neutral (and polite!) as possible.

Much of the advice you hear about body language advises ways to tweak your mannerisms to appear more confident. But you don’t want to swing so far in that direction that you come off as cocky. Stay away from these seven common habits, and you’ll avoid falling into that arrogance trap.

I’ve been doing thinking a lot about the qualities of pride and humility.

A lot of people go through the motions of being humble, but you really have to mean it. A few months ago, I sat next to a guy I didn’t know, and when I asked him what he did for a living, he said jokingly, “It’s too boring, let’s not talk about it.” But he didn’t offer up any other topics for conversation, but just waited for me to ask him leading questions. He probably thought he was being winningly self-deprecating, but instead, he was making me do all the conversational work. (Of course, it was my pride that made me annoyed by this.)

Humility is having consideration for others, appreciation for their views, curiosity about their lives, openness to correction and education by them, willingness to be interested and amused, a sense of deference, respect, and fellowship.

Here are some tips for showing humility:

1. Offer meaningful compliments: “You have a good memory,” “You obviously know a lot about this subject.” Empty, automatic compliments like “Great tie!” don’t count.

2. Give credit to others: “The team did all the work,” “Pat came up with this idea.” It’s pointless to begrudge others their due, because being generous with giving credit does NOT minimize your own contribution.

3. Ask questions and allow others to supply information. I’ve even seen some good leaders ask questions to which they knew the answers, merely to allow others the chance to demonstrate what they know. This is a challenge for me. I am a real know-it-all. It’s hard for me to ask for help, to say, “I don’t know” or keep quiet while others respond.

4. Admit error! It’s SO HARD to say “You were right, I was wrong” or “This was my fault,” but so important. Also, it’s a key to leadership. As my father once told me, “If you’ll take responsibility for failure, you’ll be given responsibility for decisions.”

5. Remember other people’s names and the details of their lives. How many times have you heard people complain that “So-and-so has met me five times, but never remembers me”? It hurts people’s feelings. Unfortunately, I have a terrible time with names, so I developed some coping strategies for dealing with that.

6. Call on others for their specific contributions: “Pat is our expert on that,” “Lee, what do you think?”

7. Laugh at yourself. Few things are as winning as people who are willing to poke fun at their own foibles. This doesn’t mean saying, “I’m so clueless” and waiting for everyone to cry, “Oh, no, you’re great!” It means honestly laughing at your idiosyncrasies and mistakes.

8. Refuse to take offense. Part of humility is not taking yourself too seriously and not getting your back up. Pride takes offense at an undermining comment, humility shrugs it off.

9. Teasing. One way of showing fellow feeling is teasing people — gently. People like to be joshed, but not about anything sensitive.

10. Remember your limits. You’re just one person. You’re not infallible. It actually IS possible that you’re wrong.

11. Don’t be a bore. It’s pride to assume that others are as interested in the minutiae of your life as you are.

12. Be courteous to others, no matter who they are. William Lyon Phelps wrote, “The final test of a gentleman is his respect for those who can be of no possible service to him.”

The issue of humility is confusing, because “being humble” is often understood to mean that you think little of yourself, that you denigrate yourself.

But I’ve found, at least in my case, when I have a stronger sense of myself, I can more easily practice humility. Lack of self-confidence makes me prideful, insistent on my ideas, defensive, quick to anger. One of the least attractive personality combinations is arrogance mixed with insecurity.

I’ve found the best way to think about this issue is not to frame it in terms of pride or humility, but rather to “Be Gretchen” — to let go of arrogance and boastfulness, as well as defensiveness and insecurity.

If you’d like to read more about happiness, check out Gretchen’s daily blog, The Happiness Project, and join the Happiness Project group on Facebook to swap ideas.

Bo Nardin is an online entrepreneur taking the idea ‘Turn your passion into a profession’ online. Read full profile

How to be arrogant

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You know how good it feels when after many weeks or even months your customer approves a project you and your whole team worked so hard on? You feel so proud of the work you have done together. But all these great feelings can be quickly spoiled if there is only one guy in your team, who is full of arrogance telling your customer what a great job he did.

Pride and arrogance: there are two different emotional states which are divided only by a thin line. Here’s how to spot the difference between the two (and not to enter the field of arrogance):

1. Proud people are always confident while arrogant people are unsecure

Proud people know what they do. They are usually masters of their profession and they always like to do things properly. They don’t want to mess around and they definitely can’t stand time-wasters.

Arrogant people often use their arrogance to cover their sloppiness and inability to cope with the task. Deep inside, they know they are not able to do the thing they are doing. They are full of doubts.

It is scientifically proven that arrogant people are prone to shame.

2. Proud people use their language wisely while arrogant people usually use strong language

Pride people always talk wisely and there are two main reasons for it:

a) they always talk from their own experience
b) they regularly work on themselves, controlling their thoughts.

They know their pride is coming from those two things so it is natural for them to speak positively and inspiring to others.

Arrogance has its seeds in an inability to control the mind. So if an arrogant person wants to make an impression on others he will most likely use strong language, including swearing.

3. Proud people think all people deserve to be treated equally while arrogant people think they are better than others

A psychological study carried out on children aged between 7 and 11 by the University of Amsterdam and Ohio State University showed that children who were told by their parents that they are better than others developed a strong narcissistic personality.

Pride people have high self-esteem but still think they are as good as others.

4. Proud people are like owls while arrogant people are like frightened dogs

When does a dog bite? It bites when fearing someone because it wants to protect itself. And that is the same situation when some people are using their arrogance: in the moments of fear of losing something.

Proud people have the attitude of owls with their inner peace. They know how to control their emotions so they seem to be always in control of the situation they are in.

5. Proud people look at hard work as their way to success while arrogant people are only opportunity seekers

Studies show that proud people are achievement-oriented viewing their hard work as the key to their success. They highly rely on themselves whilst always prepared to listen to other people’s advice.

On the other hand, arrogant people view success as pure luck so they are always on the run for the next best opportunity.

6. Proud people always praise their team while arrogant people want to take all the credits for the job

Proud people know the power rests in the teamwork so they always praise all their colleagues. They know that by doing so they lose nothing but only empower the people around them.

Arrogant people think only of their own success. When they work in a team, after the task is completed they are first on the stage to take the prize for it.

7. Proud people really know themselves well while people arrogant don’t

Psychological studies show that people with the pride have genuine self-esteem coming out of knowing themselves well. They know what they are capable of and how to control their emotions.

Arrogance is actually ignorance of knowledge.

8. Proud people wisely consider other people’s opinions while arrogant people can’t stand any criticism

If pride people find out they are wrong, they will have no problem of confessing their mistake and trying to correct it while arrogant people will do just anything to prove they are right.

9. Proud people don’t have a need to impress anybody while arrogant people have a constant urge to do so

Have you ever been in a group of people where there was a man or a woman who didn’t talk too much, but you felt a great energy coming out of him or her? And when you started talking with them, you didn’t want to leave, being pulled by their great personality? Pride people are not starving for other people’s attention, they simply attract it with their presence.

Arrogant people work hard to impress others so they are usually the loudest ones in the group. They don’t have any boundaries for achieving their goal: if there is a chance to make a joke about someone they won’t think twice to do so.

10. Proud people can work well in just any organization while arrogant people work best only in hierarchical systems

Proud people respect others, so they can work with many different people. They don’t fear somebody will take their position because they strongly believe in themselves.

On the other hand, arrogant people need a safe place to work from. And where is the perfect place for arrogance to flourish? In any hierarchical system where roles are well defined. Your boss can yell at you (if you are so unlucky to have an arrogant boss) only because of his position.

Be proud of yourself, constantly work on being the best version of yourself but never cross the line to arrogance by thinking somebody else is less important than you just because he might be doing a ‘seemingly’ less important task.

As long as you give 100% to whatever you do you can be a really proud person!

It’s possible to turn negative interactions into positive ones.

Arrogant people tend to think that they are always right, are stuck in false beliefs, and refuse to listen to other people. They may use condescending language, bully those around them, become intolerant of people, or just act downright rude!

It is not easy to constantly be around these types of people because they can begin to pick away at your self-confidence. You may not know what to say, how to stick up for yourself or politely tell them your own opinion. However, you deserve to have your voice heard and to be treated with respect.

If you always seem to cross paths with people who are stuck on themselves, try out these tips. You will be able to figure out strategies to handle that arrogant person in your life with dignity.

Have high self-confidence.

Have high self-confidence.

One of the best ways to face an arrogant person is by showing up with your own high self-confidence. Enter an encounter with an arrogant person with the knowledge that you are strong, worthy and self-assured. When you feel more in tune with yourself you will be less likely to let an arrogant person’s comments get to you. It will prohibit you from being vulnerable. An arrogant person may be unable to relate to you, and instead say cruel things. However you can let this slide when you feel secure in yourself.

Use it as a growth opportunity.

Use it as a growth opportunity.

You can use this encounter as an opportunity to improve your listening skills, tolerance of other people, and reflect on how you interact with others. What is your weakness? Are you easily frustrated, impatient, or a poor listener? Try to flip your usual negative approach and practice doing the opposite. Listen to this person without judgement, seek to understand what motivates them, and aim to learn a higher tolerance of people who are different than you. On the flip side, arrogant people tend to look for people-pleasers or timid mouse’s because it is easy to push these type of people around. If you have difficulties in this area, you may wish to improve your assertiveness. Reflect on ways you can stand up for yourself when interacting with this person.

Remember that arrogant people are insecure.

Remember that arrogant people are insecure.

Find some empathy in yourself if you can. Though arrogant people tend to bully and seek to dominate and control, it’s a reflection of their fear of being controlled. The arrogant person finds it hard to admit being wrong, cling to false beliefs, and refuse to take into account other people’s opinions. Many arrogant people have less life experience because of their inability to be more open minded. While it is hard to sympathize with someone like this, remember that they are still human and that you should treat them with respect regardless of circumstances. Do not stoop down to their level and instead just acknowledge their own short comings and insecurities.

I’ve been doing thinking a lot about the qualities of pride and humility.

A lot of people go through the motions of being humble, but you really have to mean it. A few months ago, I sat next to a guy I didn’t know, and when I asked him what he did for a living, he said jokingly, “It’s too boring, let’s not talk about it.” But he didn’t offer up any other topics for conversation, but just waited for me to ask him leading questions. He probably thought he was being winningly self-deprecating, but instead, he was making me do all the conversational work. (Of course, it was my pride that made me annoyed by this.)

Humility is having consideration for others, appreciation for their views, curiosity about their lives, openness to correction and education by them, willingness to be interested and amused, a sense of deference, respect, and fellowship.

Here are some tips for showing humility:

1. Offer meaningful compliments: “You have a good memory,” “You obviously know a lot about this subject.” Empty, automatic compliments like “Great tie!” don’t count.

2. Give credit to others: “The team did all the work,” “Pat came up with this idea.” It’s pointless to begrudge others their due, because being generous with giving credit does NOT minimize your own contribution.

3. Ask questions and allow others to supply information. I’ve even seen some good leaders ask questions to which they knew the answers, merely to allow others the chance to demonstrate what they know. This is a challenge for me. I am a real know-it-all. It’s hard for me to ask for help, to say, “I don’t know” or keep quiet while others respond.

4. Admit error! It’s SO HARD to say “You were right, I was wrong” or “This was my fault,” but so important. Also, it’s a key to leadership. As my father once told me, “If you’ll take responsibility for failure, you’ll be given responsibility for decisions.”

5. Remember other people’s names and the details of their lives. How many times have you heard people complain that “So-and-so has met me five times, but never remembers me”? It hurts people’s feelings. Unfortunately, I have a terrible time with names, so I developed some coping strategies for dealing with that.

6. Call on others for their specific contributions: “Pat is our expert on that,” “Lee, what do you think?”

7. Laugh at yourself. Few things are as winning as people who are willing to poke fun at their own foibles. This doesn’t mean saying, “I’m so clueless” and waiting for everyone to cry, “Oh, no, you’re great!” It means honestly laughing at your idiosyncrasies and mistakes.

8. Refuse to take offense. Part of humility is not taking yourself too seriously and not getting your back up. Pride takes offense at an undermining comment, humility shrugs it off.

9. Teasing. One way of showing fellow feeling is teasing people — gently. People like to be joshed, but not about anything sensitive.

10. Remember your limits. You’re just one person. You’re not infallible. It actually IS possible that you’re wrong.

11. Don’t be a bore. It’s pride to assume that others are as interested in the minutiae of your life as you are.

12. Be courteous to others, no matter who they are. William Lyon Phelps wrote, “The final test of a gentleman is his respect for those who can be of no possible service to him.”

The issue of humility is confusing, because “being humble” is often understood to mean that you think little of yourself, that you denigrate yourself.

But I’ve found, at least in my case, when I have a stronger sense of myself, I can more easily practice humility. Lack of self-confidence makes me prideful, insistent on my ideas, defensive, quick to anger. One of the least attractive personality combinations is arrogance mixed with insecurity.

I’ve found the best way to think about this issue is not to frame it in terms of pride or humility, but rather to “Be Gretchen” — to let go of arrogance and boastfulness, as well as defensiveness and insecurity.

If you’d like to read more about happiness, check out Gretchen’s daily blog, The Happiness Project, and join the Happiness Project group on Facebook to swap ideas.

We should all seek to possess good traits; however, too much of a good thing can lead to an imbalance. For instance, confidence is something everyone aspires to have; it allows a person to unlock his/her full potential without fear or hesitation. However, too much of it can taint people, making them blinded by their own hubris and become arrogant. Here are ways that you can do to reestablish balance and convert your arrogance back to confidence:

1. Reflect on your Imperfections
Sometimes, may it be because of developed expertise or unfounded self-image, a person may think of himself/herself as superior to others and decide that it is all right to project such superiority through words and actions. To counteract this perception, you must reflect on your imperfections. Acknowledge that you too possess flaws like everybody else, and that you cannot be perfect in everything you do. It is only when you accept this that you can start developing a more balanced image of yourself, something that will help you be more grounded.

2. Flaunt in Moderation
It is all right to flaunt and boast your abilities from time to time. After all, you worked hard to attain them, and you deserve the recognition. However, you should flaunt in moderation. Being proud of your football skills after a hard-earned victory is one thing, but rubbing them into other players’ faces every time you see them is another. You can brag from time to time; just don’t make it a habit.

3. Show More and Say Less
In film making, they say that showing is a better way to convey a story than telling, and perhaps the same can be said when it comes to seeking recognition without being arrogant. If you’re good at video games, then show how good you are by beating all the high-level bosses instead of typing arrogant remarks about how unbeatable you are and how weak other players are. Not only will you not be viewed as arrogant, but you will also look way cooler when people get to see you in action!

4. Exercise Humility
Even if everybody knows that you are good at something, it is still best to stay humble. This is not to say that bragging is bad; again, we already mentioned that flaunting in moderation is acceptable. However, there are situations where being humble is preferred. In fact, being down to earth despite one’s knowledge and skills makes him/her look significantly more badass!

5. Accept Constructive Criticisms
A common trait among arrogant people is that they refuse to accept any negative feedback from others. Don’t be enslaved by hubris. The more you open yourself up to constructive criticisms, the more enlightened you will be about your shortcomings. Accepting such feedback will help you realize your lapses, be more open-minded, and strive to become a better person.

6. Surround Yourself with the Right People
They say that birds of the same feather flock together. Although this proverb is not an absolute truth, it applies to the development of one’s character. If you surround yourself with other arrogant people, you’ll find it hard to see your own arrogance. Hence, exert effort in acquainting yourself with non-arrogant individuals. Not only will you get more tips to get rid of your arrogance, but by being a part of their flock, you may also develop the same down to earth character they possess.

7. Learn to Concede and Apologize
Arrogant people are often drowned by their desire to win and always be the right one that they forget to see the value of confession and apology. Their arrogance sometimes blinds them to the fact that other people’s ideas are better than their own, never conceding no matter how much evidence is laid down. Moreover, their pride hinders them from saying sorry to any person they may have offended or hurt. Hence, a key step to renouncing arrogance is learning how to accept defeat and deliver a sincere apology.

8. Allow Other People to Shine
Arrogant people, due to their bloated self-perception, believe that they should always be in the center stage, constantly showing others how great and special they are. If you want to stop being arrogant, then you must occasionally step out of the limelight. Be open to sitting at the sidelines every now and then, and let others take the stage. While you’re at it, acknowledge them, and give them the praise they deserve. If you do this, then your hubris will shrink, and your character will grow!

9. Show Respect to Others
Showing respect to others is a highly effective remedy against most personality ailments, including arrogance. If you know the value of respect, then you will never slap unsolicited conceit on other people’s faces; you will be more sensitive about their feelings and situations, and you will know when you should stop asserting and start accepting. When you respect people, you’re already half-way through getting rid of arrogance.

10. Don’t Make Everything a Competition
Don’t get me wrong; being competitive isn’t bad. However, if you compete in everything you do, then you develop a tendency to be arrogant—all in an effort to show others that you are better. Take it easy sometimes. Breathe. Stop comparing yourself to others and proving that you are better all the time. Doing this will help you appreciate your strengths without resorting to drastic measures that lead to rudeness and arrogance.

11. Love Yourself More
This is perhaps the most important thing that some people should do to not be arrogant. It may sound ironic, but sometimes, people use arrogance to hide their insecurity and protect their self-esteem. However, it’s all right to show vulnerability and embrace one’s imperfections. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Give yourself the love and acknowledgment you deserve. Try to be truly happy and confident about what you can do and rid yourself of that mask of arrogance.

Arrogance is not a permanent thing. We are all capable of being better individuals. So long as you are willing to accept your mistakes, listen to other people, and be steadfast toward self-improvement, you’ll most certainly become the confident, yet not overbearing, the person you aspire to be.

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There’s a fine line between confidence and arrogance. This is especially true given both entail a strong belief in one’s own abilities. When it comes to the responses they provoke, however, that’s where the similarities end.

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Confidence gets hired; arrogance is shown the door.

Building confidence takes work; arrogance is simple. In fact, it’s easy to come off as arrogant. Avoid these 12 behaviors so you don’t leave the impression of being a Class-A jerk people would rather avoid instead of the confident leader they want to follow.

1. Drop names out of context

The name-dropper is a character who frequents many local Chamber of Commerce mixers. Name-droppers are a dime a dozen. Completely unsolicited, they will jabber endlessly about who they know, who they met and who they pal around with. As a journalist, I interview many great business leaders, one of whom was Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz. Bringing up his name in a presentation about leadership is appropriate; talking about Schultz with a barista at my local Starbucks in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania is arrogant.

2. Avoid eye contact

Arrogant people could care less about others. They’re only interested in themselves, and it shows through nonverbal communication. The arrogant person will constantly be looking past you for someone else to talk to — someone they think will benefit them more than you. Confident leaders look you in the eye and make you feel as though you’re the most important person in the room.

3. Arrive consistently late to meetings … and don’t apologize

Arrogant people think their time is more important than anybody else’s. Being late means nothing to them. Confident leaders are timely and quick to apologize when they’re off schedule. If you’re a sales director, you can’t be arriving late to meetings with clients. That’s a key way to make them be untrustworthy of you right off that bat.

4. Use condescending phrases and put-downs

Some well-known business leaders have been known to put down others with phrases like “that’s stupid” or “you’re a bozo.” These particular leaders are supremely confident, of course, but they’ve crossed the line into arrogance. I worked for one famous broadcast executive who routinely demeaned his employees and colleagues. Before long there was a massive brain drain from his department. He was bright; ambitious; and yes, confident. But his arrogance turned so many people off that he lost the loyalty of his team (and ultimately his position).

5. Strut or swagger when you walk into a room

The best way to describe arrogant body language is “dominating.” Examples include pointing a finger at someone’s chest, hands on hips or waving someone off with a flick of the finger. Confidence is open and less intimidating.

6. Interrupt conversations … frequently

Since arrogant people are only concerned about themselves, they’re not really listening to you. Not only are they always on the lookout for someone else to talk to, they interrupt the conversation frequently.

Constantly interrupting during a panel interview would be a huge turn off for most hiring managers.

7. Have an answer for everything

While it’s good to have an elevator pitch prepared when someone asks you about yourself, having an answer for every single question is a sign of arrogance.

Psychologists say that arrogance is a compensation for insecurities and weaknesses. An arrogant person will rarely say, “I don’t know the answer, but I’ll find out.” Confident people admit mistakes and learn something from those experiences.

8. Always one-up the other person

The other day I was speaking to someone who has a reputation for arrogance, and I noticed a common theme in his conversation with me — he always tried to one-up everything I said. For example, when the conversation turned to a documentary that I had recently seen on sharks, this man said, “That’s nothing, I swim with sharks.” This trait in arrogant people is so common that the famous Dilbert cartoon strip has a recurring character named “Topper.” Confident people don’t feel the need to brag. Their accomplishments do it for them.

In one conversation I witnessed a few weeks ago, one participant mentioned that they were a systems engineer at a certain company, and the other person interjected to say that they were a senior systems engineer at another company. Safe to say the conversation ended there.

9. Blast competitors

Arrogant people can’t see the strengths in their competitors, and if they do, they seek to minimize those competitors by bad-mouthing them. This simply makes the arrogant person look even smaller. If you’re interviewing at Aetna, don’t go in and put Cigna on blast.

I recently overheard a woman talking to a recruiter and saying vicious things about her former company as well as other companies in the industry. The recruiter listened patiently. When the woman left, I leaned over and asked the recruiter what he thought. He simply rolled his eyes. Take the high road so you don’t get the eye roll. Those in the staffing industry can see right through your confidence and into your arrogance.

10. Blame someone else

Arrogant people can’t ‘fess up to their own mistakes. Watch “America’s Next Top Model” with Tyra Banks. The most arrogant young wannabes are the ones who blame others for not taking a good photograph — it’s either the fault of the photographer or the makeup artist. Needless to say, they don’t last long, even in an industry that has more than its share of divas.

Some famous business leaders are unquestionably arrogant — people about whom you may have heard or for whom you work. But the vast majority of inspiring leaders are confident, not arrogant. Be a leader people want to follow and not one people would rather avoid.

When it comes to your career, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to blame others, from a failed project to your exit interview. Think twice before you decide to do so.

Musings From the Sage

Nine Signs You Might Be Arrogant

Ask someone who they would rather spend time with, an arrogant person or a self-confident person and their answer will be quick and easy. No one likes to be around an arrogant person.

There are nine easily recognizable clues that you might be arrogant that I have compiled. Follow with me and see if any of these apply to you. I must confess that as I wrote these, more than once I had to pause and admit, Ron, you are talking about yourself. So please, don’t think I am writing these from some ivory tower of confidence – it’s more like I’m writing them from the swamp of real-life-experience.

Clue #1: Your favorite subject is you! You want to be the center of attention of every gathering. You want all eyes on you, all conversation about you, at least as long as the conversation is positive, and you don’t like it when the focus turns on someone else.

You want everyone to agree with you. You want your story to be the best story. You always want to appear in charge and under control, and if something happens that makes you look bad you don’t like it and you cannot laugh about it. You love the people who adore you but loathe those who do not like you.

Clue #2: You have a hard time self-reflecting. Arrogant people have a real tough time facing their own fallacies and weaknesses. To look inward can be very difficult because you do not want to see yourself as you really are.

If someone points out that you are rude, what do you do? In most cases, you either justify your actions or you act even ruder with a nasty retort. If someone argues with your point of view, you take little or no time to listen and consider their argument. While they are talking you are not listening but rather you are formulating your most elegant rebuttal against their stupidity.

Clue #3: You probably don’t have any real friends. In the first instance this is because you don’t need any. After all, you are complete in yourself, right? Why would you need someone when you are perfectly capable of caring for yourself by yourself.

By the way, you need to know that it is really hard to be a friend to someone who doesn’t seem to need other people. When you block out others from entering your little circle of self-indulgence and self-interest , you become an island unto yourself.

Clue #4: You want things to go your way and to be done your way. Why is that? Because you are smarter than other people, that’s why! Your “my way or the highway” attitude frustrates the people around you but that doesn’t bother you because that is the way you want it. At least until one day you find yourself all alone on your own little private highway to nowhere.

Clue #5: You are capable of false charm but true cruelty is at your core. An arrogant person is usually very charming at first meeting. Their over-the-top personality makes them the center of attention and their charisma captivates many. But it does not always last long because hidden behind the charm are stronger emotions such as cruelty, spite, and vindictiveness. Anyone who comes against you or who discovers your fake magnetism feels your wrath.

Clue #6: You see people you do not like as threats to your perfect little world. For an arrogant person, the more they hate someone, the more dangerous that person is to their fantasy world; and so, the bigger the threat, the nastier the critical retort.

Think for a moment about someone you don’t like. Does your blood start to boil? Do you begin to formulate reasons why this person is such a lout or idiot or reprobate?

Clue #7: You overcompensate for your weaknesses. You talk loud, walk with a swagger, brag about your accomplishments, and maybe even over-dress or over-make-up to hide your frailties. You cover up your real or imagined deficiencies and personal or physical inferiority by striving for power or dominance over others.

Clue #8: You are intolerant of people who are not like you. Arrogant people are quick to criticize others and to point out the faults and weaknesses of anyone who is not up to their standards. You have a need to correct the errors of other people and even enjoy setting up others to fail so you can point out their weaknesses and laugh at their failures. It makes you feel smug to see others fail.

An arrogant person talks only to people he thinks are worthy of his presence. His nose-in-the-air attitude is visible as he walks past the “little people” of this world because they are unworthy of his attention or interest.

Clue #9: You have a vulnerability that lies behind your shield of invincibleness. Fact is, you know you’re not as good as you hope other people think you are and you are terrified they are going to find out. So what do you do? You become increasingly arrogant, increasingly isolated, and increasingly unpopular.

A confident person is willing to risk making a fool of himself but not an arrogant person. A confident person will go ahead and grab a microphone on Karaoke night and sing off-key without apology, then laugh with the crowd as they applaud his departure from the stage.

An arrogant person will storm off any stage where he is NOT applauded with vigor. He cannot withstand being seen as a making a mistake and worst of all, making that mistake in the presence of others.

OK, now let’s review these ten signs you are an arrogant person and compare them to a confident person.

  1. An arrogant person must always have the spotlight on them. A confident person can share the spotlight.
  2. An arrogant person has a hard time self-reflecting. A confident person enjoys looking inward to see both the good things he thinks, says and does, but also the things about him he needs to change.
  3. An arrogant person has no true friends. A confident person has an abundance of friendships at every level.
  4. An arrogant person wants everything done his way. A confident person can learn something from others and can adapt to almost any situation.
  5. An arrogant person is capable of false charm and unusual cruelty. A confident person is sincere and gentle in thought, word and deed.
  6. An arrogant person does not like threats to their perfect little world. A confident person can accept change and even thrive in the midst of it.
  7. An arrogant person overcompensates for his weaknesses. A confident person admits weaknesses and turns them into strengths.
  8. An arrogant person is intolerant of people who are different than they are. A confident person sees value in every human being, even those with whom he may disagree on some very serious issues.
  9. An arrogant person has a vulnerability that underlies his arrogance. A confident person is willingly vulnerable and not afraid if others discover he is lacking in perfection.

Do any of these clues ring true with the way you think, act and feel? Pick out the clues that most damage your personal growth and start working on them. No one likes an arrogant person and you want to be liked!