How to Own Rejection

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No one in the history of ever has moved through this life without a slap from rejection. From Beyonce’ to Einstein, to you and me, rejection is part of the journey. What sets successful people like Queen Bey apart is how they handle rejection. Understanding that rejection is an opportunity and not a scarlet letter is the key to owning it. When you own rejection, you view it objectively; that is, you understand that it has nothing to do with you as a person. So, here’s the 411 on how to own rejection.

 

1. It’s not you, it’s me. Rejection from a job, parent, or crush has nothing to do with you. It is solely the decision of the rejector. Every person, company, entity has the right to decide what is best for them. Choices are made based on what is needed now and in the future. Never take it personally. You are not everyone’s cup of tea. Believe it or not, in all of Beyonce’s fabulousness, there are people who don’t care for her work. She isn’t any less fabulous or talented and she still has a whole hive of supporters who love what she does. So Beyonce, so you!

2. Grieve it. Move on. I recently applied for an opportunity to learn how to create and sustain a successful podcast offered by Spotify. It included an intense boot camp with experts, in New York, in June. I felt that I met all the criteria. As I checked my email for a response-nothing. Let me just say that there is no form of rejection as painful as the no response. Rejection letters and even the rejections that are screamed at you in a fit of frustration, at least offer some form of explanation, but that no response shit will have your mind and emotions strapped in the world’s most loopiest roller coaster traveling through a series of tornadoes. As such was the case with me. We are human and we want to know why the hell would you not want someone like me? It’s OK. Grieve it and then gather yourself up. Dust yourself off and then look at what you’ve offered. Use that no as an opportunity to remind yourself of the work and time you’ve invested, decide if it needs tweaking and then move on to the next suitor.

3. So what, do it anyway. Just because you received 1 no or 100, doesn’t mean that you can’t do it anyway. I recently read an article on xonecole.com about The LipBar lipstick company that was rudely rejected on an episode of Shark Tank, but found a home in Target stores. That one no doesn’t mean you shouldn’t continue to pursue your dream. It only means that it was no for them. Keep perfecting your craft, make changes that are necessary for you.

4. New Directions. In the words of the beloved Dr. Maya Angelou, “each of us has the right and the responsibility to assess the roads which lie ahead, and those over which we have traveled, and if the future road looms ominous or unpromising, and the roads back uninviting, then we need to gather our resolve and , carrying only the necessary baggage, step off that road into another direction.” Sometimes rejection is necessary to push you into a new direction. It can serve as the launching pad for you to learn something new about yourself. It can serve as the push you need to pioneer into something new all together. Let it serve you.

 

*Excerpt is from Wouldn’t Take Nothing for My Journey Now by Maya Angelou.

 


Dear Universe…I’m Back!

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Confession is good for the soul….
I must confess that I almost gave up on my dreams. Yes, girl you read that correctly. Normally, at the end of the year I get extremely excited about the upcoming New Year, as it translates to fresh starts and plenty of new beginnings. However, as I closed out 2017 I didn’t have that normal anticipation and excitement. I was struggling with a number of things, including whether I was cut out for the life I had imagined myself. I admit that I started entertaining thoughts of why I shouldn’t attempt the multitude of goals that I had been carrying in my heart for so long and then it happened. Fear started to whisper to my heart that maybe I should just focus on the here and now; focus on planning for my wedding (again) and keeping up with the day to day of being a good employee, mom and mate. Once that thought crossed my mind, I instantly felt relieved. I allowed my fear of all the things that could go wrong, of all the reasons why I haven’t attempted the work towards my dreams such as lack of funds, time, and being overwhelmed with so many ideas, to lead me to a false epiphany. I literally allowed myself to make peace with giving up and letting all that dreamy stuff go. I quit posting to my Instagram and Facebook accounts too. I decided that the wonderful women and men that constantly flood my timelines with pearls and gems of wisdom for business and affirmations to keep going and follow through-were not talking to me because well, I just wasn’t cut out for the kind of work that is required to become the woman I saw in my dreams every day. I put away vision boards that I had started and all of my journals. I had in a sense laid to rest my dreams. I told my heart that this was the best thing to do. That since so many people are already doing the kind of work that I once felt destined for, my contributions would just be like drops in the ocean, swallowed up and having little to no effect on the growth or trajectory of it. I allowed my heart to settle for a life that was just good. Good because I would be focused on what was needed for the now.
Good is the enemy of great…..
Fast forward to 03/25/2018. I sat in my favorite chair in the living room as my mother dashed about my kitchen cooking and my 18-month old son explored his recent discovery that he can climb up his high chair and devoured the last few pages of The Alchemist. The previous week I saw an Instagram post of a beautiful woman sitting at a table in a café with a copy of it in her hands. My heart spoke up and said, “Hey didn’t you buy that book last summer?” I enthusiastically answered “yes” and went and found it in a box. Within the first few pages I was hooked. The foreword from author Paulo Coelho, offered his testimony of how 25 years ago when The Alchemist was first published in Brazil, that it went unnoticed and soon after, his original publisher cut him loose. He testifies that even in the midst of it, he “believed in his work and never wavered from his vision.” That line alone caused my heart to burst and tears began to flow. I cried because as Coelho simply puts, “when you want something, the whole universe conspires to help you.” I had been resuscitated. What I thought was dead and buried came alive! I spent every free moment reading The Alchemist as God was speaking to my heart. My spirit was yet alive and what I thought was dead was only asleep. I started having so many epiphanies that I couldn’t keep up with highlighting and underlining of the salient points of each page. As I read about the shepherd boy and his quest for his Personal Legend, I was reminded of my quest for my own. I remembered that God created me with purpose and to not pursue that purpose is to live out of alignment with God. The very thought of a life wasted after being handcrafted by the same hands and mind that created the sun, moon, stars and that made the oceans so deep, that no man will ever know its secrets-made me fall to my knees. I couldn’t stomach accepting that as my life. So, on 03/25/18 I decided to believe in myself for the very first time, as my future self. I told fear to have several seats and to never speak up unless it is telling me of a dangerous situation, for that is its natural purpose. I told my heart how sorry I was for not allowing it to serve its purpose, which is to keep me focused on the master work that I was created to complete, all so that I could live in alignment with God. I haven’t stopped there! I spent time perfecting a design for a logo and name for the platform that I am creating for this work and then I did the unthinkable: I launched that shit! I finally took all of the signs of the universe and advice of all the folks I follow and started with what I have-ready or not.

I am listening to my heart and doing the work to become all that I was created to be! We all have a master work that is our personal legends to complete. Don’t abandon the work. Somewhere, someday, someone is going to thrive and awaken to their own journeys because of your work.
“When you want something, the whole universe conspires to help you.”-Paulo Coelho