How to Think About Rejection

You are not being rejected. You are being told no. These two things are very different.

If you are dating someone for years, and you believe that your relationship is going to continue, and the person you love refuses your marriage proposal, you have been rejected. It’s personal. The person to whom you proposed has made a decision that you are absolutely not the kind of person with whom they want to spend the rest of their life. See, they know you well enough to reject you.

When you call someone to ask them for their time, your request is being rejected, but you are not personally being rejected. Your dream client doesn’t know you well enough to reject you personally. They are simply telling you no.

The no you hear isn’t personal. It is simply feedback. The no answer to your request means your dream client does not believe that the time you are asking for isn’t what you offered in trade (see The Lost Art of Closing: Winning the 10 Commitments That Drive Sales for more on Trading Value). Because they didn’t hear a strong enough value proposition, they are refusing your offer.

Improving your approach means paying attention to this feedback that the no provides you so you can sharpen your message and try again. This is something that you will not do if you sit and wallow in your sorrow because you feel that you were personally rejected. Listen, you don’t have the kind of relationship with a prospect that makes a no to a meeting request a rejection, so don’t be so sensitive.

Later on, after you’ve won some clients, you’ll get to feel rejection when your client decides to work with your competitor because they feel that you have been complacent and believed you were impossible to replace. Your client will feel a little something when they inform you that they’ve gone with your competitor, and it will feel a lot more like rejection, but know that this too is just a form of feedback.

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