Have you ever found yourself minimizing your success? Not sharing all your wins? Or being mindful of who you share your goals with because most wouldn’t get it? Why is it when we find ourselves with some measure of success, we sometimes want to fly under the radar? For some, it is an apologetic behavior for being great with the hopes of not making others feel less than.
This behavior reminds me of a viral video released a couple of years ago by Pantene called, “Not Sorry”. According to their site, “it was designed to spark a dialogue about how women unknowingly minimize their strength with the subtle, yet powerful behavior of unnecessarily saying ‘sorry,’ when their is no reason to apologize.” The video showed examples of small things like walking into a room, being a little late for good reason, and more.
But what about the biggest and most significant things in our lives? We should not be unnecessarily apologizing for those things big or small. Instead we should allow our light to shine, be seen, and be heard in order to show others how we overcame the obstacles to our success.
Here are 4 things you shouldn’t be apologizing for:
1. Being yourself
Unless your personality is a detriment to others and causes harm, it’s your gift. A gift that makes you, uniquely you. I recently had a good friend who was let go from her job for, get this, for being too positive! After 20+ successful years in retail, her new boss told her, “Your style is too positive and it won’t help us get the results we need.”
Thankfully, she didn’t apologize for being who she is. Nor did she try to change what had been the secret to her career this whole time. Instead, she told him, “I hear you, but the very thing you find wrong with me, is the gift that has gotten me to this point in my career.” Always be yourself!
“To be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
2. Your success
There are seasons of our lives that were simply made for us. Ones in which it seems like everything we do, say, or touch, turns to gold. Winning streaks are exciting and invigorating. I can remember seasons of my life where I got the new job, the crazy salary increase, and a new house all within a few weeks. I’ve experienced such seasons even in my business with an influx of new clients, contracts, and revenue.
It’s the type of success that elevates you to another level causing a gap between you and those watching your success. In the past I’ve been guilty of only sharing the magnitude of such wins with close friends and family. Be the person to show others how you did it and how they can as well. Honor your hard work and celebrate your successes.
3. Being driven
Do you have dreams that are so big they make you feel a little crazy? Especially when you have no clue how to bring them to life? I totally get it! That was me. But what I realized is the only reason those dreams seemed crazy is because sometimes those around us either aren’t dreaming big enough or at all.
Don’t apologize for thinking big, mapping out your inventions, business ideas, or ways to transform your world. Find other big dreamers, thinkers, and go-getters to dream with. Being average and thinking average is not an option.
4. Being well-liked
I will never forget years ago a former co-worker pulled me to the side and told me she was jealous of me. It took me by surprise. I could not imagine why. She was a colleague with similar skill sets and competencies. However, she explained her jealousy stemmed from my ability to successfully navigate our organization and being well liked by key leaders.
I clearly remembered saying, “I’m sorry, I don’t know what to say.” But as I reflect on it now, what was I apologizing for? I didn’t want to diminish her accomplishments; however I should have just owned my success and encouraged her to do the same!
“If you don’t drive your business, you will be driven out of business.” – B. C. Forbes
What are you unintentionally apologizing for? Be unapologetic about your career and business success, a great marriage, and wonderful family. All the things that make you and your life great.
Take a stand to embrace the success of the best areas of your life. Celebrate and share what’s good in your life and in doing so show others what is possible in their own lives.