I Used To Downplay My Success To Impress Guys, But Not Anymore

I used to think it was better for guys I was dating to talk about their successes instead of asking about mine, but doing this was totally whack. It caused me to tone down my achievements in order to keep guys interested and that totally backfired. Now I’m determined to never downplay my success for guys ever again.

  1. It put them on a pedestal. If I’m always raising guys to the status of gods, it means that I’m actually putting myself down in the dirt. I’m so focused on them that I’m neglecting myself. I’m a catch and guys should know it! I refuse to bow down and try to boost the guy I’m dating anymore. That’s so ridiculous.
  2. I came across as insecure. If I’ve achieved something I’m proud of, I’m not going to be going on and on about it like an arrogant loser, but I won’t deny it anymore. When I did that in the past, it actually made it seem like I was insecure. Hell no.
  3. It made guys think I didn’t love myself. By avoiding talk about my successes, the cool milestones that I’d achieved, or the things I’d crossed off my bucket list, it made me come across as lacking self-love. I’d not only avoid talk of my achievements altogether but I’d go out of my way to downplay them if they did come up. For example, if a guy said that it was great how I’d climbed a mountain or whatever, I’d say, “Nah, I could’ve done better!” and then explained how I basically sucked. What?
  4. I was putting guys off me. Funnily enough, instead of impressing guys by doing this, they probably thought I was fishing for compliments and was doing the whole damsel in distress act that I really hate. Ugh. No wonder they’d be put off me. Honestly, I started to dislike myself.
  5. I was afraid of hurting their feelings. Sometimes, if I’d achieved more than the guy I was dating or I was in a better place in my career than him, I’d especially downplay this truth. I didn’t want to hurt the guy’s feelings or bruise his ego. Screw that. I should’ve chosen guys who were more confident in themselves. I don’t want to have to feel like I’m babysitting a guy’s ego. That’s not my job.
  6. I was hiding my awesome qualities. I thought downplaying my success and achievements wasn’t a biggie, but it actually caused me to downplay the qualities I had that helped me achieve those successes. For example, I was hiding the fact that I was a go-getter, determined, and strong. That sucks! I’d been so afraid of showing my successes because that would make guys not like me for who I was, but by hiding them I was effectively hiding myself. So damn sad!
  7. I wasn’t being honest. One of the worst things about downplaying my success is that it made me fake AF in the dating game. I wasn’t really showing the guys I was dating what I was really like, which means that when things fell apart, I always felt like I’d been partly to blame for it. Ugh.
  8. I lived with regrets. I ended up with loads of regrets when relationships failed. I’d think, “If only I’d really shown the guy what I was like, maybe he’d have stayed.” The thing is, you only get one chance to make a great impression and show the person why they should be with you. By hiding my real self, I wasn’t making a good impression at all. I didn’t care so much about the guy leaving, but that I wasn’t living in a truthful way.
  9. What was the point? So I could boost the guy’s ego? So I could seem humble and down-to-earth? Screw that. I want to be a confident person. I want to show the world, and especially the person I’m dating, that I’m worthy and valuable to society and that I’m living life to the fullest.
  10. I won’t act ashamed. It’s almost as though I used to hide my achievements from guys because I was ashamed of them, or I was afraid of being judged by them. Some people just aren’t supportive of their partners, and they end up being moody or jealous when their girlfriends do better than them or earn a higher salary than they do. Those guys need to leave me alone because I refuse to censor or change myself any longer.
  11. If I don’t fit the box, then bye. If a guy I’m dating doesn’t support me or my successes, that’s really his problem. I won’t be losing sleep over him. I’m done with trying to cut myself down to size to gain others’ approval.
  12. So what if I’m “too much”I’d often fear being seen as “too much”—too independent, too ambitious, too strong, too challenging. I worried that these things could sink my romantic relationships, so I tried to reel in my ambitions. WTF? I only have one life to live and many dreams to chase. If the guy I’m with sees me as “too” anything, he needs to GTFO. I want to be with someone who wants to see me soar instead of cutting my wings.


Giulia Simolo is a writer from Johannesburg, South Africa with a degree in English Language and Literature. She has been working as a journalist for more than a decade, writing for sites including AskMen, Native Interiors, and Live Eco. You can find out more about her on Facebook and LinkedIn, or follow her on Twitter @GiuliaSimolo.