Here’s Why You Should Not Always Rely On Perception & Self Confidence

There is no doubt that success breeds confidence and in turn, the confidence gained from success positively influences people and performance. People with good confidence can be termed as good, but one with a bit of extra confidence can have its drawbacks.

Overconfidence Is The Mother Of All Psychological Biases.

Over Confidence

Self Learning Through Online Videos

People nowadays learn things from themselves without formal and proper learning. The best part is you save time, energy and money but do you really think; you get well-equipped things through self-learning?

Research has proven that your experiments with online available videos and tutorials can make you ‘feel equipped’, or give that feeling of “I developed a new skill’, but this probably does not make you a master.

People are often seen sharing stuff through videos on micro-blogging sites such as Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube while others tend to learn from them. You have tried it, haven’t you? But did that help you 100%? Did you become a master in that task?

Study author Michael Kardas from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business says:

The more people watched others, the more they felt they could perform the skill too, even when their abilities hadn’t actually changed for the better.”

Social media’s easy way of promoting different videos have motivated people to demonstrate the skill as correctly as shown, without practicing. But does that video without exercising helped to improve your abilities?

Kardas And Ed O’Brien’s Online Experiment

With the technologies touching limitless skies of success, the new techniques are trying making the life of humans easy. The online platforms are making money with their new and fresh content that helps people to know and learn more.

Online Learning

In one of the online experiments, the researchers made 1,003 people watch the tablecloth trick video with every step of instructions. The trick was to pull the tablecloth off a table without disturbing the settings on the cloth. After watching the 5-second video 20 times, the researchers marked the growth of confidence in people to pull off this trick than the one who watched the video once.

However, people who just read the instructions and thought to pull off the trick for an extended period of time did not show confidence. This experiment resulted in an inflated sense of competence in people.

Kardas And O’Brien’s Experiment On Perception:

To find whether the sense of competence is borne out from the actual performance, the researchers tested a group of 193 participants on their dart-throwing abilities. People who watched the demo video more than once saw confidence of securing more points than the one who watched the video just once. The first group was expected to score more as they had learned more technique and improved more after watching the same video more than once.


But these perceptions didn’t stand how it was expected to be. People who watched the video more than once scored same as people who saw it once.

Kardas and O’Brien found same evidence in other experiments as well. This was seen when people were asked to do moonwalk, play a musical instrument, juggling or play a digital computer game. The only thing that the researchers found after looking at every phenomenon was participants watched others perform these skills and then overestimated their own abilities.

Game Of Overconfidence

Why do people overestimate themselves while watching others perform any activity? People who viewed the tablecloth trick in variation did not achieve the way it was expected to be. They did not show exposure-related overconfidence, giving a perfect sense that people can feel confident only when they practice and get used to with the new skills. Keeping tracks on specific steps and actions can shape the performance and your new ability.

Study author Michael Kardas of The University of Chicago Booth School of Business explains:

“Our findings suggest that merely watching others could cause people to attempt skills that they might not be ready or able to perform themselves” 

To develop any new skills, one must have a proper technical learning, detailed steps, and information that can form more accurate perceptions.

Kardas frther explains:

“We see this as a potentially widespread phenomenon given that people have daily access to outlets for watching others perform.”

He also believes that:

“Anyone who browses online for tips before attempting any skill like from playing any instrument to cooking techniques to game tricks can benefit from knowledge which leads overestimation of their confidence and on their abilities after watching such videos and should cautious enough before trying skills similar to the video.”

Overconfidence can take charge in us, anywhere and anytime.

So lets find out how to fix our such attitude.

Always Listen:

Overconfident people tend to ignore other people’s genuine suggestions and advice that can lead problems to us in many ways. That is why we must always listen to people, analyze their words and then try to implement them.

Always Listen

Know Your Needs:

People always try to glue up in an environment that needs much more to show than to actually use. From buying a new sports car to have limited edition handbag, people spend a lot without thinking about the actual needs. Knowing your needs and outcomes can help you with better cognitive functioning and decision making skills.

Calm Down:

As an overconfident person, we are always excited to work fast. From making decisions to executing things, we always hurry up without giving a thought of consequences that can occur at the end of the day. We have always experienced the horrors of quick decision-making skills. That is why it is always recommended to slow down your excitement and give time to think about the outcomes.

Calm Down

Never Compare Yourself With Others:

Overconfidence can take new roots by simply watching people’s abilities and talents. Underestimating other’s skills and comparing your skill with it can go majorly wrong and can affect you negatively.

Learn From Your Mistakes:

As we are living in a generation of experiments and risks, we are likely to ignore our past mistakes and tend to repeat them again. It’s better to take time and know the reasons behind failures and try to make adequate steps that can lead success. Keeping good focus, concentrating, asking questions, taking other’s advice and suggestions into consideration can help wonders.

Learn From Your Mistakes

Know When To Be Confident:

Many times, people confidently answer questions that are unknown to them, leading to miserable failure and sometimes insulting. Always be aware of things happening around you. A confident person is the one who puts extra efforts in planning and strategizing things, keeps tracks on his/her failures and keeps themselves updated.


Its good to be confident but it’s excellent to know when to be confident. As overconfidence always bring a learning experience in our lives, try that such occurrences does not change your life completely.

So to be on a safer side, it’s better that we are good and honest with ourselves and even to others.

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