On Hearing No

I love being able to share my successes and accomplishments and exciting news here with you – it’s so amazing to know that you all are following along and cheering me on. I honestly look forward to sharing exciting things, because I always feel like you are all genuinely happy for me.

But sometimes, I worry that I do a bit of a disservice sharing the happy things, because it makes it sound like my news is all exciting news, all the time. And while I’ve had my share of fun things to share this year, it’s far from the case that my life is always rainbows and sunshine.

It’s been amazing to build my platform and expand my reach over the last year or so… but it hasn’t always been people reaching out to me and offering to help. Sometimes it has been, and I am so incredibly grateful for those people and those opportunities. But other times, it’s been me reaching out to people and basically selling myself – convincing them that I have a story worth listening to, or that I have something important and valuable to share.

Inevitably, people say no (probably more than you would imagine). And while logically I know that it can’t always be a yes… that doesn’t mean it necessarily makes it any easier to hear. Especially if it’s an opportunity I’m really passionate about and can see real potential in – the rejection stings no matter how gently they deliver it. But if I didn’t try – if I always waited for people to come to me, so that I would never have to worry about hearing no – I’d also miss out on a lot of opportunities.

While I said hearing no doesn’t necessarily get easier, I do think that the more you hear it, the less it affects you personally each time. I’ve always been an incredibly Type A person – a competitive overachiever. (This will shock exactly no one who knows me in real life.) I like to succeed, and sometimes hearing no can sound like you’re being called a failure. No one wants that!

So now, it’s not that I’m not disappointed, when I hear a no, but I have learned not to take it as a personal failing. I’ve come to accept that there’s a risk of disappointment that comes with reaching outside of my comfort zone. And there are so many moving parts, so many different reasons why the answer might be no – the timing isn’t right, the opportunity isn’t quite the right fit… or maybe there just isn’t a good reason, and the answer is no anyway.

It’s so cliche, but the important part really is what happens next – what comes after the no. I think the best thing to do is to fight back against the no. Sure, allow yourself to be disappointed, but don’t let it hold you back. Don’t let it affect your confidence or your passion, because if you stop believing in yourself, you will hear no more and more – it’s a vicious cycle.

Everyone hears no, even if you only hear about the times they heard yes. But don’t let it drag you down. Make sure you remember that there will be more, maybe even better, opportunities in the future, if you just keep going.

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