STOP THE FALSE MODESTY - No time for it.

“The opposite of belonging is fitting in”

Brene Brown

Do something different.

Follow a creative idea and complete it. 

The most radical thing you can do is accept the compliment, make the video and don’t apologise, receive the applause, be gracious, be bold and be radical.

And by radical I mean, don’t force your modesty as a knee jerk to your upbringing, your school life or that friend who hasn’t got their shit together. .

Don’t spend your life avoiding the words; braggart, gloater, show-off, big-head.

These words were designed to keep you down and the ruling classes up. 

To keep you in your place.

These words are not for you.

They are in place to ensure dangerous narcissists don’t get too much power without the accompanying sense of service, duty and responsibility.

Yep that’s working out brilliantly.

Also that is not you.

And don’t get me started on having ideas above your station, being too big for your breeches, your boots or anything else that implies that you should stay EXACTLY where you are. Or exactly where they are are. Or exactly where they are comfortable with you being. 

You are an adult now - anyone who bullies you for being too much can fuck off.

In fact - if you are a child, a teenager or anyone younger than me, you can also, using your inside voice and a gracious smile, allow those fears to fuck off.

Because it will be mostly your inside voice that is your undoing.

Call upon grace. 

Most people are good and kind and LOVE to hear about your endeavours.



Neither underplayed or overplayed.

And underplaying is just as insincere as overplaying.

“False modesty, kills creativity”.



Anyone who gossips about you for being a show off is welcome to their judgement but you are the boss of you.

We are not at school.

Or at the mercy of critical parents (Not the supportive, self-assured and ‘proud of you’ types).

That one person you are trying to please who uses that language about people?

Wasting your precious time, skills and loving creativity on avoiding the person who doesn’t have the humility to make space for you being bigger, better and brighter?

The person who judges people as being ‘icky’ when they are shining and showing?

You know what’s icky? False modesty. Teaching the next generation to repeat the same habits of deflection, self-deprecation and modesty unskilfully. Encouraging people not to tell the truth in favour of pleasing the gossips. That’s icky.

Now, I have lived in Japan for many years now and am well aware that if I go all out with my latest success that i will be judged as somewhat unsophisticated. This is where skill comes in. This kind of humbleness is part of a carefully constructed set of cultural norms where modesty has value. I understand this.

But make NO MISTAKE. There is a system of recognition in Japan - a system where people are celebrated and revered and tell the truth about what they have done and are rewarded as such. Even a simple business card exchange will tell you that. If humility and modesty were truly embedded in the culture there would be no expectation of deference based on seniority. But there is. And one should know that and increase their skill in that arena, or any cultural arena. Then choose, where you push the edge out and where you won’t. And understand the collateral. I love it when people tell the truth.

My bile gets jumpy when they don’t.

Know that game - but know that it’s a game and ensure you are not putting the rules of one game over another.

Marketing your expertise is NOT the place for faux humility. Or false modesty. Giving people access to what you have is NOT the place to underplay your offerings and successes.

“Be yourself with skill”

Now I am reminded of Ricky Gervais the UK comedian and untethered irreverent social commentator. 

One night he went out for a dinner with Salman Rushdie and David Bowie.

The next he was with his school mates. 

Upon being asked where he had been the night before, he just said he’d been out for dinner.

He thought it would be a bit gaucher to start telling his mates for school that he had been out with Salman Rushdie and David Bowie.

This is the kind of Time-Place-Occassion stuff I can get behind.

A loving understatement to ensure the group comes before his celebrity friend stories.

It’s also why I always ask my mate who manages movie stars to tell me all their celebrity stories - I don’t want her to feel self conscious about her job. 

Also I can handle it. So you see I CAN HANDLE IT. I can humble my ears to allow the stories from her real actual life to enter my brain without feeling defeated or less-than. 

I have space for her telling me how she ran through Cannes that one time in a full length gown with Mr and Mrs X trying to avoid the Paparazzi. Without making it mean ANYTHING about me. Another day at the office. A fabulous day.

There will always be people at differencing stages of life, career and love than you. 


Shine bright. 

And if you don’t have anywhere to shine bright get in touch with me.

And you can shine with me. I love your light, your brightness and your luck. I’ll even tell you if I feel jealous - not because I need you to play it down- just so you know - I have space for it all. Including my own jealousy. And my jealousy wants to you continue! It just comes long for the ride. But it’s on the back seat. Stopped into a child seat. It is NOT driving.

“Faux humility, kills authenticity”.

And how about this for super-human levels of humility.

If you come across someone who does happen to be showing off, positioning themselves or trying to prove something.


Be curious - ask more. 

Ask more about their beautiful house in the best postcode in town. 

Get curious about their incredible success.

Be interested and listen listen listen.

There is no greater humility than that.


Then NEVER EVER use any of the words listed above. 

I dare you.

I double dare you.

Don’t retreat to your judgement circle and gossip and judge the braggart (that word actually brings bile into my gullet), show-off, big-head, gloater. 

Breathe, let it land and be interested. Give that person what they want.




There is no greater humility than that. No greater modesty than to make space, open up and let those people tell you their stories. IN THEIR WAY.

You belong up the bell curve?

Get up the bell curve and be yourself. With skill.

@taychin_olwcw Look - a peacock giving zero shits about showing it’s authentic wears to its prospective market. No faux humility here. “What these old things? Oh they’re nothing”. Entirely appropriate display.

@taychin_olwcw Look - a peacock giving zero shits about showing it’s authentic wears to its prospective market. No faux humility here. “What these old things? Oh they’re nothing”. Entirely appropriate display.

Don’t jump in the middle to please that one person who loves to mock and judge the people who are living. 

Who are marketing. 

Who are saying the things your secretly want to say but don’t dare

Incase you get a bad report

Good behaviour does not equate to good leadership 

Good behaviour gets approval from your parents 

Good behaviour protects you from certain types of parent 

Good behaviour gets you approval from certain types of teachers 

Good behaviour protects you from certain types of teacher 

Good behaviour does not equate to achievement or respect in the adult world 

Good behaviour does not get you a good report in the adult world

Good behaviour in the adult world is allowing the highest, most confident, humble, peaceful, self-assured, loving and brave version of yourself to be in the driving seat.

Don't behave badly and always be kind, polite and gracious. Genuinely. Sincerely. Authentically. 

But do what it takes to deliver 

Do what it takes to take other people with you to edges and heights

And women - don’t model apology and downplaying to your people

Nobody’s got time for that.

“Be cheeky, be irreverent”.

Mohau Pheko, Japan Ambassador to South Africa, 2015



I have 5 spaces open for a 6-month programme together - places close at the end of July when Sarah Furuya Coaching goes on break for August. The programme runs from now until the end of December so you can ELEVATE the rest of your year, get into 2020 with Olympic levels of excellence! My clients are CMOs, Lawyers, entrepreneurs, Tech managers, World Economic Forum members, educators, marketers, NPO leaders, Corporate Social Responsibility leaders, Board members, translators, writers, financial workers and so much more. All of them elevate, question and become bigger brighter and have breakthroughs doing coaching work with me. We create brave spaces together where we tell the truth, work through self limiting beliefs, lean into strengths and surprise ourselves. Relationships become richer and easier, money comes in and we get over ourselves I LOVE this work, I love when we get truthful, I LOVE when magic starts happening. I love when you send me your wedding photos and share all your brilliant successes at the end of each month. That’s what we do here. that’s what I create. A space for you to be your most brilliant, vulnerable and bright self - all of it. We have room for ALL OF IT HERE.

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The Six-month Coaching Package

We do mid-term programme of 7 x 1 hour 1:1 coaching sessions (you can group these if you like for a 90 mins or 2 hour session) to be used by the end of December, and plan the rest of the year rigorously and also the next 5 years, then start to take action now to support the long-term vision and adjust along the road (every action adjusts your trajectory). We’ll dig into stories, values and programmes that are no longer serving you and make adjustments. We’ll check in on fears and desires and stepping fully into yourself and your glory.

Package includes content including:

  • Full Lumina Psychometric Profile (Worth 15,000)

  • Planning - the simplest planning tools for your left and right brain to play nicely together

  • Storytelling - how to tell your hero story and create your mythology

  • Drama - how to stay out of it and lovingly stay out of other people’s

  • Toxins - what are the toxins that poison relationship

  • Monthly Truth Log (monthly stocktake including coaching questions and self reflection - really helps to move you on and recognise what you have already done and what comes next and celebrate your momentum)

  • Access to special offers, first refusal on places and memberships in the future - special offer on membership to the 1-year FNJ programme

  • Surprise gifts and treats and other extras that come up as and when

  • Discounts off workshops and retreats

  • Access to Writers Salons - weekly set times when we get together online and set goals and check in on our writing achievements

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Enjoying my social media break - haven’t looked at Facebook, Instagram or Twitter for over a month. Join me for some sweet coaching together - I LOVE MY WORK and would love you to love yours even MORE  Photo credit ALEXLENS

Enjoying my social media break - haven’t looked at Facebook, Instagram or Twitter for over a month. Join me for some sweet coaching together - I LOVE MY WORK and would love you to love yours even MORE

Photo credit ALEXLENS

Sarah Furuya