Sometimes the simplest little things can have big impact on our lives. In this series of posts I examine very short sentences or phrases (each just three words long) that can make a difference in your life. If you have a three word sentence or phrase that changed your life somehow, share it with me and I will share it with the world.
I read a story today from one of the real estate news feeds that I get that reported that many would-be buyers, especially first-time buyers are sitting on the sidelines right now because they don’t believe that they could succeed if they applied for a mortgage. They haven’t tried, but they’ve read all of the newspaper reports and seen the stories on TV about how hardline the mortgage companies have become; so they are frozen in their tacks because they are afraid of rejection.
Boy, do those three little words bring back memories all the way back to high school and spending prom night without a date, or walking home alone from the bar in college (and later in life) or even being reluctant to interview for the job that I wanted or to ask for the raise that I deserved. Or how about later in life not asserting a point of view in a conversation or not bidding on that house that you really love; all because you were afraid of rejection.
Fear of rejection or of failure tends to limit what you try in the first place, so it limits your potential for success and that is the greatest danger of all. The fear is usually about the unknown, since there would be no reason to worry and fret if you knew the outcome already. The unknown plays terrible tricks on our minds because it allows us to mentally explore all possible outcomes and we tend as humans to focus upon the negative alternatives. Good motivational coaches would work with you to turn that around and tell you to focus upon visualizing the best outcomes to avoid being afraid of rejection.
In an earlier post titled Just do it, I talked of not letting fear uncertainty and doubt about something keep you from doing that thing. That post was more oriented towards trying new things and taking risks. One of the risks that life throws at us is the risk of rejection. You may have finally worked up the courage to ask that pretty girl that you’ve been admiring to the dance and then you get rejected. So what? You may have finally gone in to see the boss about that job opening in the department and got rejected. So what? You may have displayed your art at a show or fair and nor had a single buyer. So what? You’re still standing. The only blood spilled was that of your ego taking a hit. You’ll still be here tomorrow and tomorrow may present another chance; and, if not then, maybe the next day will be your day. You can’t be like a turtle and pull back into your shell from life because you are afraid of rejection.
Stuff happens. Rejection happens. Life goes on. In fact I challenge you to stop and think for a minute when rejection happens – Did that hurt as much as you feared it would or was it really just disappointing? Did all of the terrible things that you had imagined come to pass or did the moment pass without all of that drama? Did you go into whatever it was with a positive attitude or were you thinking, “I’ll probably get rejected,” from the get go. If you can admit to yourself that you went into it with that negative attitude then you’ll know what to work on for the next time. And, there will be a next time – a time when you won’t be afraid of rejection.
That’s the next thing that you’ll realize if you stop and think about it is – it didn’t kill me; I’m still here; I’ll have another chance. If you can get to that point mentally, you’re on your way to where you really want to be – that place where you boldly go ahead with your dreams and plans. You’ll get there once you’ve been knocked down a few times and realize that you got back up and went on. You’ll get to that place of self-confidence because you’ve looked it in the eye, you got back up and you are no longer afraid of rejection.
Congratulations when you get to the mental place that you need to be at; you have discovered self –confidence. Self-confidence isn’t blind, stupid belief that you can do anything (we have the Jackass movie franchise for that) but rather a logical and calculated belief, based upon experiences, that you can accomplish great things because you are not afraid to try. You have reached that state where, as Nelson Mandela said, “I am the master of my fate and the captain of my destiny” and you are no longer afraid of rejection.
Go for it!