It's not uncommon for women to dumb down their talents or accomplishments. There are many reasons for this.
REASONS WOMEN DUMB DOWN THEIR GREATNESS
1. MEN- She doesn't want to threaten a man's ego and make him feel less great, due to being so incredible. It's silly, but they say stroking a man's ego is how you win him over. And the moment that ego is threatened, the man he thought he was no longer exists. A man needs rose colored glasses to feel in control. A woman kindly places a pair on his face when she makes herself smaller than what she is.
2. LIKABILITY- Women LOOOVE being loved and adored. And no one will adore you if they're intimidated by you. The funny part is many strong and ambitious women will say 'I don't care what people think of me.' But the moment someone asks you, 'What's new? What you been up to?!' Instead of talking about how you've finally completed your book, or you started a spin class to kick start your new fitness goals, you say 'Same ole, same ole.' You're gently telling yourself don't share your happiness, don't acknowledge what excites you, because it may turn people off.
3. WORRIED NO ONE ELSE WILL THINK IT'S GREAT- Just because you think it's great doesn't mean it's actually great. In order for something to be considered great it must be high on the greatness scale. It's unclear what dignifies greatness on this scale. You just know there is a scale.. somewhere and your accomplishment probably doesn't make the cut.
I met a group of women recently at an event, you could call it a sister circle. All these women, if you asked them what they did they would passively say 'I work at Georgia Tech, I'm in HR, I do marketing.' But when explored a little deeper, one was in the middle of publishing her second book. The other had a jewelry line. The other directs plays. Another is not only an interior decorator, but her house has been photographed for the AJC Newspaper not once but TWICE! I was in the midst of greatness and would've never known. These group of women were not only humble, but striving to reach different heights in their personal and professional lives. I was in awe of their accomplishments and wondered if they knew how great they really were.
I realized, I don't take the time to share my own greatness with strangers, friends, even those I love. I made a decision to no longer dumb down my greatness. Not by being boastful, arrogant, or vain but by reassuring myself of my vision, reminding myself of how I persevere through fear and challenges to get what I want, by shining a light on my uniqueness and not being afraid to stand in that light. As my manager would say, "By not allowing anyone to dull my sparkle."
5 WAYS TO ACKNOWLEDGE YOUR GREATNESS AND NOT DIMINISH IT
1. SHAMELESSLY SHARE WHAT YOU'RE WORKING ON WITH ANY AND EVERYBODY: Sometimes we don't want to share with others our hobbies or dreams that we want to become professions one day, because it's not real yet. It becomes real when you start acting like it's real. Share your most recent high with people you meet. You'd be surprised how that connection could get you closer to where you're headed or how their acknowledgment encourages you to keep going.
2. KEEP A LIST OF ACTIONS YOU'RE PROUD OF: It is easy to forget how wonderful of a month you had when you're hit with unexpected challenges the following month. Your list of accomplishments is the perfect way to bring yourself back up when you want to hop on the pity train. Just watch that train pass on by.
3. PUT YOUR ACCOMPLISHMENTS ON YOUR RESUME: There's absolutely nothing wrong with stating you're a self-published author or a beauty pageant winner. This shows you are a well rounded, interesting individual. If you're willing to work hard for the things you want then you have the ability to work hard for the company as well.
4. SIMPLY SAY THANK YOU: When someone takes the time to acknowledge your greatness, don't foul it up with what you could've done better and how you should've done this or that. Stop that. It's not about perfection. It's about following your passion, trying something different, finding your way. Them acknowledging you is a big way of saying "I see you and I'm proud of you."
5. ACKNOWLEDGE THE GREATNESS IN OTHERS: It is impossible to see the greatness in others without seeing that same greatness in yourself. When others are doing well stepping into their truth and finding their voice, they need the support of someone else who shares their story. Someone else who is on their own journey to say: Good Job, Keep Going, I Believe in You.
Every month on the 19th I will acknowledge my own greatness by sharing the things I'm proud of myself. Some will be small, others will be big, but they all will be awesome to me because of the effort I put in to make it happen.
Did a 10 day Periscope Series on Organization
Still Breastfeeding at almost 10 months
Hired a speaking coach
Redid my website
Joined NAPO (National Assoc for Professional Organizers) national and local
Started recording videos for my vlog
I hope to encourage other women to shamelessly do the same. Like the saying goes, 'You can't be happy for someone else when you're not happy with yourself.' Once we are able to acknowledge our greatness within, we can then acknowledge that in others. Countless women are doing extraordinary things, but we never take the time to notice. Unfortunately, it's hidden behind their job title, their modesty, their role as a wife or mother. Ditch what's dull, share what's great.
Don't let anyone dull your shine. Share in the comments below some greatness you're proud of. Allow us to congratulate you and encourage you.