You Have Achieved Great Success. How Do You Talk About It Without Showing Off?

How to talk about yourself without feeling immodest.
When you’re asked to talk about yourself and your career history, how do you avoid coming across as dull and self-absorbed?

Have you noticed; some people are very uncomfortable talking about themselves even when they are very successful?

This may be because when you were young, your parents told you to not “Show Off.” Or you are uncomfortable when someone else drones on about themselves and all their much-exaggerated accomplishments.

I understand. However, from time to time we are all inevitably required to introduce ourselves to new colleagues, coworkers, or team members and share our career history.

What can you do to avoid coming across as overbearing and self-absorbed?

Present your career history as a story and give credit to parents, mentors, or role models. Think of everyone who helped you become who you are, what advice did they give?  Who modeled how to become successful?  Who offered encouragement when you most needed it.

All this contributed to your success.

Before you find yourself in another situation where you are required to introduce yourself and talk about your experience, I suggest four ways to talk about yourself without feeling immodest:

1.) Walk through your life story from the point of view of your mother or father and their influence.

2.) Talk about your discussions with your high school guidance counselor before you headed to college or into the workforce.

3.) Think about the key lessons you learned from your first boss – good or bad – and how they influenced you in your career.

4.) Discuss the development of your long-term relationship with a business partner or consultant with whom you’ve had numerous successes.

Choose one of these, or review your experiences and identify someone else who has truly helped or inspired you along the way. Rather than simply listing your achievements, tell your story based on the experiences and lessons that have led to your success. Make it a good story and credit others who’ve taught and encouraged you along the way. Your history may not be the basis of a blockbuster movie, but it can still incorporate comedy, drama, and adventure!

My favorite project of the moment, coaching 24 speakers for the Tom Ferry Speakers Bureau. There is nothing more exciting than an engaged audience who takes the process seriously.

With FrippVT, you learn how to tell great stories to stand out from your competition.

Nothing is more exciting than coaching an audience excited to learn and take the process seriously.


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