Master The Art Of Being Rejected

Published: 31st August 2005
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How good are you at being rejected? The ability to handle

rejection is one of the most important skills we can master in

life. As you pursue your dreams, there will always be those who

will tell you that you just aren't good enough. The road to the

attainment of our goals is rarely rejection-free. Yet, when doors

are slammed in our faces, many of us conclude we must be on the

wrong track. It is amazing how willing we are to abandon our

heartfelt dreams because someone else doesn't believe in us.

A close look at anyone who has achieved greatness will reveal

there was plenty of rejection along the way. Take J.K. Rowling,

for example. Every single publisher in Britain, and all but one

in the U.S., rejected her first Harry Potter book. Many could

offer her lots of reasons why the book would never sell.

Bill Clinton lost an election for the governor of Arkansas years

before he was elected president of the U.S.

Steve Jobs suffered public humiliation when he was fired by the

company he founded--Apple Computer. Today he is once again

leading Apple to even bigger and better accomplishments.

When U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg graduated

from law school, not one major law firm offered her a job.

Some other stories of rejection among well-known achievers:

--Walt Disney lost his job at a newspaper because his editor

accused him of "having no good ideas." Later, Walt founded a

cartoon production company that went bankrupt.

--Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basketball team.

--A producer sent a memo regarding Fred Astaire's 1928 screen

test that said "Can't act. Can't sing. Balding. Can dance a

little." Fred acquired the original memo years later, so he could

frame it and hang it over his fireplace.

--Albert Einstein did so poorly in school that a teacher

suggested he quit, telling him, "Einstein, you will never amount

to anything."

--At 21, F.W. Woolworth was employed in a dry goods store. His

employer refused to let him wait on customers because he "didn't

have enough sense."

--Early in her career, Lucille Ball had a reputation as a failed

actress and a "B-Movie Queen."


In spite of the rejection they encountered, these individuals

persevered. Each was challenged to believe in himself or herself

when others didn't. Each refused to allow someone else's negative

opinion to become a roadblock in the pursuit of lifelong dreams.

You, too, can use the inevitable rejection that comes your way to

fortify your belief in yourself and fuel your progress. Here are

six steps you can take to master the art of being rejected:

1. Let rejection be a signal to go inward, and do some soul- searching. Ask yourself: What do I really desire to create in my

life? Am I pursuing this path because it is truly what I want, or

is it what someone else wants for me? Then write down your goals.

2. Use rejection as an opportunity to better yourself. Ask for

constructive criticism. Take note of any ways you can perform

better next time. Would it help to take a class or read a book on

the subject? Then do it.

3. Reconnect with your inner guidance. Close your eyes and ask

yourself what the next step is for you. Be still and the answer

will come--either right away, or in the next few weeks. Your

inner guidance is always moving you towards something, rather

than away from something. It gently nudges you to take those

actions which will enable the fulfillment of your desires.

4. Remember to lighten up and have fun along the way. When you

are following your bliss, you are in alignment with your higher

purpose. Let your life be a joyful adventure, in which the

journey is as important as the destination. Try not to take

yourself so seriously.

5. Remind yourself that encounters with those who do not believe

in you are an opportunity to strengthen your belief in yourself,

and your commitment to following your inner guidance. Only you

hold the map of your life territory within you. Others cannot

possibly know what is right for you, or what you are capable of

doing, being, or having.

6. Visualize the attainment of your dreams. Put your body in a

comfortable position, either seated or lying down. Close your

eyes, and take some deep breaths. Imagine that it is a year from

now, and that all of your dreams have become a reality. Create a

movie in your mind, in which you live those dreams. Make it as

real as you can. Be lighthearted and playful with your

imagination. Get excited about it. Use all of your senses. Don't

worry if you can't see things clearly--its okay if you just sense

what it feels like to have attained your goals.

7. Celebrate your rejections, for they are a sure sign that you

are stepping out of your comfort zone and living your life to the


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