"What do you do?" he asked, the guy who studied Dutch in the same course as I did.
"I study at Chalmers", I answered. At the time I did a full time study at Chalmers Technical University and a part time study in Dutch at Gothenburg university.
He opened his eyes wide and said:
"Oh, then you're intelligent."
After that, this guy who had been very talkative and almost flirty (even though I had said at the beginning of the course I was studying Dutch since I had a Dutch boyfriend) avoided me. My choice of education scared him.
Have you ever refrained from doing or saying something because you didn't want to make someone else feel uncomfortable?
I know women who walk hunched over to not tower over shorter men. My beautiful mum found the attention her beauty resulted in umcomfortable. I coach women who sneak away to work on their computer because they don't want their family to consider them overly ambitious.
We cannot help others feel better by making ourselves smaller.
We cannot make the world brighter if we dim our lights.
I hope you will always dare to shine your light brightly.
For more reflection on this topic, watch this 3 min video.