Building Resilience while Handling Rejection

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Yesterday, of all days, I received two frustrating bits of news; both large scale rejection letters. One came in the form of an email, the second came as a piece of snail mail, and both said, in a peanut shell, “After careful consideration and a lot of competition, we’re giving this to someone else.” If only it was as easy to make peanut butter cookies as it is to read the mail.

Rejection, as I have come to understand it is one way of kicking a sales person square in the ass, stating “get out of your own way, and kick your effort up a notch.” But this particular conclusion didn’t hit me till later on in the day.

What hit me first, was a moment to embrace the rejection. Was this news true? Couldn’t be… not only have I put countless hours into both of these projects up front, but I’ve gone above and beyond, maybe so far as to call myself an overachiever. There was re-reading the email seven times, and re-reading the snail mail at least three. I was in disbelief.

My stronger, more resilient half began to talk some sense into the weak, listless heap at my desk, which is exactly when the second part hit me. “This, my darling, is a no for now.”

A decision had to be made, a difficult one. I recall a conversation with a friend a while back. She owns a large hotel chain as well as two large gas station franchises. The weight of the world, times several thousand families, rests on her shoulders. She taught me that the faster a decision is made at the top of an organization, the faster movement can happen throughout the organization. A good decision is one that is not only aligned with the long-term goals and strategic vision of the company, it is also made with all parties taken into consideration.

These big decisions didn’t sidetrack me, in fact, it has had the contrary affect.