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Are They Laughing At Me?


The fear of rejection is in us all, but at least helps us set the foundations for who we are.

I liked a girl at school when I was 15 for the best part of an academic year (this was before the days when ‘stalking’ became a common term). There was one occasion where I could put my master plan into action.

Day One From My Career Of Rejection

It was a school basketball match against Poole Grammar School and having a height advantage over a lot of others had it’s benefits as I was effectively the target man for the points (you could say an Andy Carroll of the pubescent school world). I knew that the girl I liked was watching, so naturally became an occasion to show off more than anything else.

With cocky confidence sky high at the end of the match (I remember we won by a couple of points) I went up to the girl in front of her friends and asked if she ‘would go out with me.’ The response was pretty unanimous where the girl laughed at my question and she replied ‘not a chance’ in front of everyone else (and then told that ‘she already has a boyfriend’ to rub it in a bit more). From that occasion was year one of understanding what ‘rejection’ was.

Rejection is one of the biggest obstacles we all have to face when it comes to standing for something and shaping what we represent as people (and the businesses we represent).

We Need To Step Up & Give It A Go

The other angle is what if you never try? At least rejection shapes our perception of the world and if we steer clear of it, doesn’t that make us pretty bland and scared of trying things that are not necessarily in our comfort zone?

The amount of rejections I have had over the years have been far too many to remember, in fact was only rejected last week for a sizeable project that we had one eye on (thankfully didn’t budget it into our figures). To be said in the debrief that we came second, didn’t make it any better, but hey…the job just wasn’t for us.

We all get rejected, from those who don’t provide the opportunities, to those who don’t appreciate what we have done for them, to those who aren’t willing to see our point of view or to those who are just annoyed with you.

The only thing that lets you rise above rejection is losing the fear and accepting who you are and what you stand for. If you try over and over again at least shows your spark that you have to try new things, rise above the rest and have that foundation of resilience .The world is full of funnels to allow us wallow in, as an example according to research (from Tel Aviv University) Facebook makes it now harder to get over a relationship breakup.

To embrace exclusion whether on a personal or professional level, is to ensure that the foundations that you have built are resilient and that you are happy to accept who you are and what you stand for (on a physical and emotional level).

Creating The Voice That Is Yours

This also sets the blocks by having a voice that is yours and worthy of being considered by others as influential, by having an opinion and being unfazed by rejection. We all need to have a viewpoint and whether people agree with it or now, at least we have the facts and belief to back it up. Pick what side of the road you want to belong to and quickly stick to it, being firmly positioned in the middle of the road is the worst place to be.

Lets face facts, not everyone is going to like you, all brands are human and all humans make a judgement. If we can be present, not shy away when we head down a road we’re not familiar with and stand tall can only enhance who we are and what we do.

Lets celebrate rejection. Be good to read examples of what hasn’t had the positive result you had hoped for, but at least you’ve had the balls to do it.

Image: Flickr courtesy of Aff Photography

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