Updated: May 28, 2020
She said no.
I didn’t get the job.
They told me they went with another company.
He told me it was “him, and not me.”
Rejection hits you in the gut in an intense, laser-beam way that makes you rethink your whole being.
But does it have to?
What if rejection were really re-direction in disguise? Or rejection was actually a way to highlight a misdirection we couldn’t identify for ourselves? Is it possible that the rejection experience was meant to move you in another direction that you were unable or unwilling to take on your own?
It may not seem like it in the moment, or maybe even for some time after. With emotional maturity and a stable, unfettered knowledge that you, your product or service, or your company were not the cause of the rejection, would you be able to see that these rejections may just be a case of misalignment? Wrong fit, wrong place, wrong time.
Rejection doesn’t mean you’ll never get there, it may mean, just not now. It may mean you will get there, but it will look differently than you imagined. You should still find out why you lost the deal (if you can), and see if there was any miscommunication or misunderstanding that could be corrected or adjusted. It’s always good to be retrospective, reflective, and be open to ideas for improving or developing yourself. However, there is also the chance that unsalvageable opportunities exist because something better, something more aligned beyond your comprehension, could be waiting in the wings. That's exactly what happened to me.
Just over a year ago, I was ready for a change. I had earned a substantial income through being an individual contributor in sales, and was at the point in my life I could take a step down in pay, but a step up in personal growth. I wanted to apply for a sales training position, and after making it to the final two candidates, I was not selected. It did seem personal at the time, but I had to believe it was because there was a better platform out there for me to develop, grow and connect salespeople to tools and resources that could help their careers. Had I taken that job, this group, Society of Saleswomen, would not exist as it does today.
Sometimes we don’t see the forest for the trees. We don’t realize at the time that disappointing outcomes may ultimately serve our best interests and personal growth.
This is where trust and faith come in. Trust in and have faith that the best possible results are there for you— and there are enough of them for everyone. Trust that you’ll land in the right place, the right time, the right jobs, the right deals. That the right clients will become a part of your relationship and partnership portfolio. And that the result all of these scenarios can lead us to even more opportunities. We just need to have faith and put our best and most authentic solution and selves forward.
This takes an understanding of knowing who you are, what you stand for, what your company, product or service stands for, and to know - just know- that so long as the outcomes are in the best interest of all parties, they’ll come together and align in the right way.
It takes courage, understanding, emotional intelligence, maturity, bigger picture-thinking, and faith ... and if you have it, you’ll begin to see rejection as a guide and not an obstacle in your life. It will help you rethink, grow, pivot and learn.
"When one door closes, another opens; but we often look so long and regretfully upon the closed door that we do not see the one which has opened for us." - Alexander Graham Bell
Do you have any stories where rejection resulted in something even better for you?
Leave them in the comments below!
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