Here are a few points that tickled my brain while thinking over the topic:
- Confidence is to think. Courage is to believe.
- Confidence is to analyze. Courage is to act.
- Confidence is to know the way out. Courage is to believe that you will find and get through a way out.
- Confidence is a result of reasons and calculations. Courage is a result of optimism and self belief.
- Confidence is scientific. Courage is humane.
- Confident people compare options. Courageous people either create or kill the options.
- You can have confidence in others. But can never have courage in others.
- Confidence makes you ask ‘what all can happen?’. Courage makes you answer ‘No matter whatever happens, we will see’.
True that confidence helps to build courage and vice-versa.
But it is also true that no matter how confident you are, you still might not have the courage to act based on your confidence. A great business idea can remain just a business idea because of lack of courage. You might be confident about the hindu philosophy of birth and rebirth but you can still be afraid of death.
When you gamble you don’t have confidence in your luck (infact you know the chances are trivial) but you still show the courage to gamble. A soldier or a VC is never sure but he is courageous.
Confidence comes from study, understanding, calculations or miscalculations, reasoning, belief.
Courage comes either from- ignorance (pseudo courage or fantasy) or self belief (I can and I will) or optimistic thinking (this time i will win the gamble) complete faith in something (soldiers for their nation) or because of situation (fire in your house and you act like a hero) and experience (from others and self).
Still, I don’t think that the two words not mutually exclusive. Courage can be an act based on extended self confidence. Confidence can be the useful product produced silently by the courage in you.
Choose to be Confident. Choose to be Courageous.