Recently my 15 year old son recently came home from school looking a little depressed. When I asked him what was wrong, he told me that he had asked a girl to the 8th grade dance and she had said “No.” She told him that she was waiting for someone else to ask her. “Someone better,” he said in a pathetic tone of voice.
What was my advice to him?
“Repeat after me….NEXT!”
I reminded him of how many other girls attended his school (in the hundreds) and that there was one or more who would be delighted to go to the dance with him. He just needed to ask another one…and soon. He smiled and picked himself up. A few days later, he told me that he had asked another girl to the dance and she had said yes. They are going as friends. Mission accomplished.
How do you deal with rejection?
Whether you are trying to get a date to the dance, interviewing for a new job, prospecting, selling, bogging or networking, you WILL face rejection. It’s inevitable. We all have to deal with it. It’s how you handle rejection that matters.
Here are six creative strategies you can use when dealing with rejection. There’s nothing new or earth shattering here; just practical methods for dealing with the inevitable rejection. I know you know this, but it’s worth repeating.
- Don’t take it personally. People make decisions based on what’s best for them, not you. You may not agree with their reasoning, but you need to respect their decision.
- Learn to deal with the negative emotion and move on quickly. Hanging on to the negativity and hurt feelings will only delay the timing of your next win. Free yourself as quickly as you can from the sadness and be ready to receive the good stuff coming your way soon enough.
- Remind yourself that you are one step closer to a YES. Sales professionals know it can take up to ten”no’s” to get one “yes.” You must persevere.
- In some cases, “No” really means “Not Now.” Check back every few months to see if the need or interest has changed. Follow up is your strength.
- If the rejection comes on paper, print it out, lay it on your drive way and run the paper over with your car or bike a few times. I learned this trick from a fellow blogger.
- If you get a rejection letter, consider saving it in your file like Andy Warhol did when the New York Museum of Modern Art refused his artwork. Watch this video for the story…
Your Networking Goal for the Week
Learn to say “Next” inside your head whenever you experience rejection. Don’t allow negative feelings such as sadness or anger to linger inside of you. Process these negative feelings as quickly as you can. You can do this one of three ways: 1) change your thoughts; 2) change your emotional state (e.g., recall a powerful memory that made you happy); or 3) change your physiology (e.g., laugh, smile, sing, breathe, move your body). Your thoughts, feelings and body are all inter-connected. Change any one, and the other two will adjust. Learn more about how you can master your mind for a change with NLP or Neuro Linguistic Programming.
With the right attitude you can not only deal with rejection, but it will strengthen your resolve and allow you to pursue your passions with vigor.
About the writer: Kathy McAfee is known as America’s Marketing Motivator and is author of the book Networking Ahead for Business. In her role as Executive Presentation Coach and Professional Speaker, Kathy helps her clients to become the recognized leaders in their fields by mastering the art of high engagement presentations, more effective networking and personal marketing. Kathy is a master practitioner of Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) and a certified Blind Spots executive coach. To learn more about Kathy, visit her web site MarketingMotivator.net. If you like this tip and want to receive free networking tips on a weekly basis, please sign up at NetworkingAhead.com