When It’s Okay To Be Cocky

Sam is a 16-year-old from Montgomery, NJ. She enjoys playing tennis, writing and Community Service. Her favorite subject in school is History.

Recently, I was notified by a so-called friend that I had developed a reputation as being “arrogant.” Safe to say, I was somewhat confused and offended and, like any somewhat confused and offended teen, I went to my parents for some quick reassurance. As they gave resounding “No”’s and continued feeding me advice, I began to learn a little more about being conceited. The main piece of information, of course, was that it is PERFECTLY OKAY to be arrogant. To me, that made sense. After all, that idea would likely explain the concept of the “diva” actress or the rapper who goes on about how many cars and necklaces he has.  However, I then quickly learned that there was a catch: there were two very specific reasons that make it okay to do so.


The first reason is when you have something to be arrogant about in the first place. Think about it this way: say that you are writing an essay. Naturally, you need a thesis. You wouldn’t simply write a thesis and call it a day. In fact, you would add implies, subtopics, and examples. It is similar with cockiness: you can’t be cocky and run your mouth unless you have some sort of talent, intellect, or skill that others do not. If you were to just talk without any proof or “action,” you might come off as fake or idiotic.


The second reason is when people are acting rudely towards you. We’ve all been there: people sometimes suck. You may want to feel down on yourself, but you have to realize that you must be doing something good for you that is clearly upsetting others and making them jealous. In other words, you have haters that don’t deserve your nice side. Despite the connotation, having haters can actually be a good thing because they can help you build up the confidence you deserve. Instead of getting upset over haters, just ignore them, or, if you can, fire back a witty comment. Many, if not all of them, will be dumbfounded by your “arrogance” and back off.


Unfortunately, being that we’re human and make mistakes, we can easily display such cockiness to those who don’t deserve it. Of course, this isn’t all right at all. If you accidentally do this to a friend, apologize immediately with a quick “Oh my God! I did NOT mean that in that context! I’m so sorry!” If the damage is more severe, wait until it blows over to apologize, and do whatever it is you normally do to alleviate this kind of situation.


Now for the fun part! Many celebrities, be they movie stars, musicians, or athletes, can be good examples of good and bad arrogance. Here is an analysis of a few (Note: I’m aware that these analyses may be a bit slanted, so feel free to comment on other celebrities that aren’t on here):


Reality Stars

Done Right- Vinny Guadagnino: Yeah, I know, Vinny’s from Jersey Shore and it’s trashy, blah blah blah. But believe it or not, Vinny is one of the smarter cast members of this crazy show. He graduated from SUNY New Paltz, had aspirations of going to law school, and admits in interviews that he enjoys intellectual activity, such as keeping up with the news. Not bad for a reality star from Staten Island, huh? Additionally, he is known for being more reserved than some of the other males in the house, and more respectful towards women. I’ll fist pump to that!


Done Wrong- Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino: The Situation. How do I begin to explain The Situation? No, seriously, this guy, unlike Vinny, has no real reason to be so over-confident. Washboard abs are temporary, man! Being almost thirty and prowling around the club after naive girls that you will eventually insult isn’t something to be proud of either. Pretty soon, Sitch, those fifteen, way-too-long minutes of fame will be over.



Done Right – Alex Ovechkin (Hockey Player for the Washington Capitals): Okay, so many of you guys might not be big hockey fans, so I’ll bring you up to speed. Alex is arguably one of the best players in professional hockey today, yet many sports commentators find his goal celebrations excessive and his off-season partying inappropriate. Nonetheless, “Alexander the Great,” who has played with the Capitals for almost six years, has openly expressed his gratitude towards the citizens of the nation’s capital for supporting him and his teammates. By not taking his fans for granted, Ovechkin’s bravado is well-deserved.


Done Wrong- Lebron James (Basketball Player for the Miami Heat): Unless you aren’t a huge b-ball fan or have been hiding under a rock this past summer, you probably know why the so-called “King James” shouldn’t be so confident. But it is less the fact that James “[took his] talents to South Beach” instead of staying in Cleveland. In fact, it is more of the Cavalier (pun unintended) attitude he had towards Cleveland sports fans, who haven’t exactly had the best track record for professional sports, while making this announcement. Lebron, you may be talented, but you clearly acted arrogantly to people who didn’t deserve it.


Rappers and Musicians

Done Right- Kanye West: Many of you are likely shocked that I put the hotheaded, outspoken rapper as someone who has a right to be cocky. Despite his outbursts, like the one he had done to Taylor Swift, he does take the time to explain himself and (albeit eventually) apologize. Furthermore, does anyone notice that every time we are mad at him, West drops another addicting album or single for us to eat up? To quote a lyric from his latest album, Yeezy taught us well.


Done Wrong-Chris Brown: Well, I don’t know what to say about Chris Brown. He seemed so nice, so talented, so sweet. We loved him. But then came the assault on his then-girlfriend Rihanna, and the rest was history. Now, Brown is under fire for another outburst on Good Morning America when, after being asked a simple question about Rihanna, Brown threw a tantrum, breaking windows and ripping his shirt off. As if anyone has a right to act like that in any situation. The fact that Brown’s career is completely overshadowed by Rihanna’s doesn’t help his case. Maybe Brown should just lay low until he can truly come out of his mess of a life.


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One Response to “When It’s Okay To Be Cocky”

  1. A wise guy
    October 13, 2012 at 4:57 pm #

    This whole article is wrong. There is nothing good about being cocky or arrogant. Confidence is always considerate of other at all times. Cocky people are insecure and simply apes true confidence, promoting themselves, while the truly confident person let’s other do this for them. Sadly we all to often confuse the two and celebrate loud mouths instead of the strong often silent types.

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