Logically understanding that rejection is needed and re-bounding after rejection are two very different things.
I asked out a gorgeous girl a few weeks ago. She looks just like Natalie Portman (my childhood crush) with the sass to match. Needless to say, I was interested. Just as I thought things were warming up to an enjoyable jacuzzi level temperature between us … I got the axe. You know, the “This isn’t going to work out, I’m sure there’s a great girl out there who’d be charmed by you, but it isn’t me. Goodbye,” text. Ouch.
At the time of starting this article, I received that “Goodbye,” text less than five minutes ago. This literally just happened.
Rejection is not new to me. Growing up, I was the worst kid on the little league team for years. Strikeouts for days! But I loved baseball, so I kept at it for years, and finally, I made all star teams. At the age of 16, I experienced hundreds upon hundreds of cold sales rejections, all before ultimately making lots of sales. I’ve had a public speaking fail in front of a thousand people, I started three failed blogs, and have tons of dating rejections added up. In sum, I’ve experienced thousands of rejections.
Luckily, most of them preceded my most memorable successes. Thus, I’m more proud of the rejections than I am anything else. Why? I trust in the process of success, and indeed, rejection is key to that process. Regardless of what you do, unless you’re exceptionally talented naturally, you too will need to fail in order to achieve success. As a wise gent yourself, you get that. It’s why we’re connecting here in these words.
However, logically understanding that rejection is needed, and actually re-bounding fast after rejection, are two very different things. Most people know they need to fail to succeed, but don’t overcome failure well. I certainly didn’t.
The key to rebounding after rejection is having effective strategies you instantly use. As a personal development coach and a speaker, I’m paid to deliver powerful, tactical strategies to help people thrive just after their tough times. What follows are my three most effective strategies for rebounding fast after rejection. Use them so you can fortify your confidence and keep taking action on your way towards your goals.
Strategy #1: Repeat the Task Immediately: The mind is always thinking. This is out of our control. However, what is largely in our control is what the mind focuses on. You see, just after a rejection, it’s easy for our mind think itself into to negative places. We start thinking of the pain, the hurt, and if we’re not careful, our own deficiencies. It’s why your first strategy is to repeat the same task you just failed at, immediately after experiencing rejection. Immediate action keeps your mind sharp and strong. If you’re in sales, and you were just rejected, immediately pick up the phone and dial the next prospect. Then, aim to focus only on delivering your best pitch on that call.
Repeating the same task you just failed at immediately trains the mind to focus only on the process of success, and never the struggle of failure. You’ll get better at this with practice. You want to train your mind to focus on what you want, not what you don’t want.
It’s intuitive, but making this a habit does require effort. But, by ensuring that you always go again, repeating the action, immediately after rejection, you are taking the action necessary to train this habit. It’s why, after writing three failed blogs, I re-branded and started the fourth. (Which by the way, is becoming a success). I kept repeating the action and inevitably, results came my way. But if I’d simply focused on the pain of three failures, there’s almost a 100% chance I wouldn’t be writing to you right now. Strategy number one is simple. Take the same action you just failed at immediately after experiencing rejection. Act before your mind has time to play tricks on you.
#2: Fully Focus on a New Project: Strategy number two is being deployed by yours truly at this very moment. I was rejected by the charming Natalie Portman look alike just a few minutes ago, remember? Candidly, I already feel much better than I did when I started. Why? Because immediately after experiencing rejection, I focused on a new project. I used the energy and channeled my focus on writing about rejection within sixty seconds. I knew the pain of that experience could be valuable for others, like you. It’s also soothing for me, the recent rejectee. Focusing on a new project is an effective strategy. Doing so takes your mind off of self-doubt or unnecessary pain. Since mind must have an object of focus, and can only fully focus on one, zoning in on a new project keeps you on track.
For best results, immediately pick a new project you’re passionate about (don’t do your taxes) so you lose yourself into it and become productive. The pain of rejection will softly disappear without you even noticing. Likewise, you’ll get an elevated emotional spike by doing and creating through your passion, since us humans feel our best when in motion.
However, this strategy isn’t about not dealing with heavy rejections. Rather, after finishing your work period, you’ll be in a healthier mindset to further assess any serious emotional pain you may still be feeling, especially if the rejection was a heavy one (i.e. serious breakup). Which leads me right into strategy number three…
#3: Train Your Mind by Meditating: Meditation is to your brain what the gym is for your body. Meditation calms the mind, strengthens concentration, reduces stress, and has been shown to literally increase the density of regions in your brain. While I won’t be writing about how to meditate here, I want to encourage you to meditate, especially if you feel drained after rejection. The first two strategies are very effective for less significant rejections, like a blown sales opportunity or a sharp end to a fun three weeks of dating banter with Natalie Portman. Meditation is a powerful remedy for life’s heavy blows (i.e. the ugly breakup), a healthy way to cope.
However, meditation is equally effective for thriving after smaller rejections. Again, meditation is really exercising your focus and mental resolve. It’s a mental workout! By mediating once or twice a day, consistently, you’ll find you’re more capable of shaking off all rejections. I’m not saying you wont feel the effect, but the effect wont be nearly as debilitating. Likewise, meditating daily is shown to improve focus, which will help you more successfully execute strategies number one and number two.
Now… since you’re still focused here, you’re someone who wants to thrive. You are ambitious and you want to achieve something big and you recognize that failure is a part of that process. It’s why I urge you to use each of these strategies in your day to day life.
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