If the popularity of pas mal is any indication, the French are pretty tough critics. Though the phrase may literally translate to "not bad", it's often used to replace an American very good, nice job, or way to go! We tend to be exceptionally more encouraging. So, when a Frenchman told my friend and I he was impressed with us, it meant a lot; granted we were only strategically guessing which secret wine we were tasting from the Compagnie des Vins Surnaturales' extensive wine list... but still. I have Paris, France to thank.
a significant detail, I also refuse to believe it's a prerequisite for certainty in one's self-assured adequacy. The trick, I think, is to never stop taking chances. Eat, pray, love happens on the inside. As a wise woman once shared: "You are enough. You are so enough; it is unbelievable how enough you are." It's hardly just wine knowledge to be proud of.