CitySwoon Blog

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Confident vs. Cocky

By Jade Andrews (Dating After Divorce)

What’s the difference between confidence and cockiness? As a dating coach for divorced men, I deal with this issue a lot. The difference is vulnerability.

We’re told in the world of glamourized social media and dating shows to “fake it till you make it” but, at what cost? When does faking it to exude confidence become something that isn’t ourselves? Better yet, if we meet someone we like, say on a dating site, while we’re faking it how can we be sure they are the one for us? Can you truly be vulnerable with someone who you met while you were “peacocking”?

What I tell my clients, a lot of whom are suffering from social anxiety (who doesn’t, right?) is faking it is best done only when it takes you out of your shell. Not many people are calm and collected on a first or second date. Nerves override normal functions and you find yourself forgetting something you’ve said a thousand times.

Cockiness on the other hand is confidence’s annoying coworker. Cockiness is appearing so certain of yourself, you don’t need to listen to your date’s response, because you’re already certain they’re intrigued. Cockiness is assuming that the woman you’re speaking to on the dating app would like to “send nudes” when you haven’t met.

Vulnerability allows you to be seen. It allows you to stand out from the crowd that is the swipe culture. Vulnerability allows you to be certain of yourself, but humble enough to poke fun. Showing this early on gives the opportunity to not only learn more about your potential love interest but also yourself.


One of the most effective ways to connect is through storytelling. On your next date try this; ask your date is there an embarrassing story from their childhood (be sure to match or one-up the embarrassment level). Another way is to share something that is important to you or that you’re passionate about, ask your date the same. These actions speak to a level of truth most are not able to share at first.

Try it and get back to me. I promise you won’t be disappointed.

Questions? Suggestions? Curious how a dating coach can help? Message me at jade@datingafterdivore.com.