What if you didn’t downplay it? That’s my question for you today.

And I can hear your answer….It goes something along the lines of:

Um, thanks Janelle…..When you say ‘it’, what are you referring to? What exactly am I downplaying?

Well just about anything. And everything. It could be your:


Hard work




Natural talent


Tough decisions













So, what if you didn’t downplay it?

It’s an interesting thing to think about, isn’t it? If you’re paying attention, you can see it every minute of every day. Somewhere in your orbit a woman will be downplaying something. She’ll be telling herself and others that she shouldn’t be chasing the next goal, because she should be happy with what she already has. Or that the success she achieved was really nothing, especially when you compare it to X, Y or Z.  Or that her journey was easier because of some random thing.

And, as much as it pains me to admit it, I caught myself downplaying a whole stack of my experience just the other day. I’d concocted a little narrative. And I was telling it to myself….on repeat. It was a three part story that went something like this:

  1. I shouldn’t talk to a particular group of women about the wins that I’m having in either my business and my career right now;
  2. Because some of them are currently working through a tough season with their kids and their careers;
  3. Therefore, I’m better to say nothing rather than make them feel worse, or appear like I’m insensitively big noting myself.

Now on the surface, those sentiments seem thoughtful and well intentioned. Heck. I could probably argue that they almost seem noble. But they also downplay a whole stack of life experiences that, if I chose to share them, might actually support or inspire these women. In not wanting to mention my current success I was ignoring the learning and experience (and everything else on the list above) that got me to that successful outcome in the first place.

Those experiences include the time I spent as a single mum who worked full time, the university degree I earned as a thirty-something and the time I spent travelling for work (which isn’t nearly as glamorous as everyone makes it out to be). They also include the hours and hours of leadership and coaching training I’ve done over the years as well as the actual leading and coaching that came after the training. And I probably shouldn’t gloss over the creativity, persistence and determination that underpin my entire journey.

So, in answering my own question, if I didn’t downplay it, maybe my story would provide inspiration, motivation, and light. And at the very least, it would provide an example of what can happen if you just keep taking baby steps. Which might be all another woman needs in order to keep chasing her own dreams.

I’d love to know. What in your life are you downplaying right now? And what if you didn’t downplay it? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below.

And until next time – stay fabulous.

Warmest, Janelle x

Photo Credit: Haute Stock Co

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