OK, so it may sound counter intuitive and you might be thinking that I still have some kind of New Year’s Eve hangover but stay with me on this.
Today, I was chatting to a young entrepreneur who has dreams of setting up a charity. One of the strategies we discussed for her was to identify people who had experience in setting up a charity and reach out to ask for help.
“You have to ask?” she said.
Suddenly her child like excitement was sapped from her body.
I asked her what was wrong and she said “what if they said no?”
I said to her “How will you ever know if you don’t ask?”
In my experience of helping people to improve their results, whether it’s in their business, career or life, here is what I have discovered.
I’ve come to learn that most people who are not achieving the results they want, are not willing to put themselves ‘out there’ or take action for the fear of being rejected.
They are held back by the fear of an investor or a key customer saying “No”
They are paralysed by a fear of being passed over for that big promotion or being ostracised by people around for sharing their ideas.
They procrastinate over the fear of who they might become if they are successful or if they fail.
As a result they choose to play it ‘safe’ locking their dreams, ambitions and ideas deep inside their internal Fort Knox.
Whilst I understand that nobody (including me) likes being rejected, the simple truth is that without exposing yourself to this often painful experience you will never move forward and get what you want.
How can you really achieve greatness if you are not willing to present yourself fully to the world?
I suffered this same fear when I first started writing blogs and recording videos. I’d ask myself “what if people don’t like what I am saying?” or “What if no one watches my videos or responds to my blogs?” Or “What if I say something wrong?”
There is no doubt that the experience of rejection can be crushing but it can also be incredibly positive and powerful.
It’s all a question of perspective.
When somebody says “No” you can either walk away with your tail between your legs or you can choose step back and ask yourself some powerful questions.
It is like using Google. The quality of your results depends on the quality of the search terms.
Most people simply ask “Why?” The trouble with asking ‘why’ is your brain will give you an answer whether it actually knows or not.
Instead try asking yourself questions like “What do I need to learn from this experience to help me get better next time?” or “What do I need to change in order to get the results I want next time?”
The point I am making here is that rejection is part of your refinement. It’s like a testing process.
It’s not a reason to give up and throw in the towel but rather an opportunity to be more innovative, creative and to grow your skills.
The bottom line is that In order to get what you want you have to be prepared to be rejected.
Instead of running away, embrace rejection like a friend and you’ll be surprised at how much more you could learn and achieve.