Mary Portas One Life: over to you

14 May 2009

mary portas

Every week in Grazia, Mary Portas lends her ear to a reader with a burning issue and gives her savvy, no-nonsense take on the situation. Today, it's your turn to offer Grazia reader Alice some much-needed advice. Take a look at her letter below and let us know if you've been in a similar situation, or what you think Alice should do to get ahead at a time when everything seems static...

'How do I ask for a promotion at a time like this?'
I loved my career as a celebrity fashion stylist, but it was just too unpredictable to combine with motherhood so I left when my son was born and did a complimentary health qualification, which I thought I'd use when I returned to the workplace. But then my husband was made redundant and I had to get a job fast, so I ended up working as a shop assistant for a small skincare company. The problem is that I enjoy it, but know I could do so much more – in fact, I'm bursting with ideas for visually developing the brand because I did a degree in graphic design. But how do I explain why I hid my light under a bushel to get the job in the first place, or express my true passion for the company without appearing overambitious, flighty or too big for my boots? Please help.
Alice, 39, London
 If you have a question about sex, relationships, work or family life and you would like Mary's help, please write to You can remain anonymous, so what's stopping you?  


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