This is not a medicament, but techniques that will help us manage the "no" that we receive and transform them into "yes".
"Bill Gates" when he became a blogger.
But led him in this masochistic challenge? Let's start from the beginning. As a teenager Jiang emigrated from China to US to chase his own American dream: to create an innovative technology business model like his idol Bill Gates. But after graduating from the university he settled for many years in the secure environment of a large company, until his 30’s thirties, actually while waiting to become father for the first time, he dared to resign, in order to dedicate on his dream.
With a small team of engineers he started building his own start-up, but the refusal of an investor to fund his concept, cut his wings.
Then it was decided to launch the “100 Days of Rejection”, in an effort to manage the feeling of rejection that had overwhelmed him.
The project adventures were recorded by him in mini videos, which when it was uploaded to his blog (Fearbuster.com), it became viral on social media, by opening the way for traditional media. Fox News, Huffington Post and Forbes are some of those who broadcasted the story.
My kingdom for a like.
It is known, of course, that Americans go crazy for "photogenic", often meaningless tests. But the difference is that, Jiang used his own tests as an opportunity to study the scientific literature about the rejection and enrich the fun stuff with flagship research in psychology.
Thus, reading the book we learn that the slap of rejection literally hurts: In an experiment conducted by the University of Michigan School, when we receive indifference, from the man who attracts us sexually, the brain releases us opioids, the same natural painkillers that gets produced when we suffer from physical pain.
We then, develop, an intense fear for rejection, as we would when poking our finger with a needle.
Some researchers even believe that fear for rejection is registered in our genetic material from the distant past, when those who happened to be banished from their community, end up starve or become prey for large mammalians. In prehistoric times the social rejection was equal to death.
Today, of course, it is unlikely to be attacked by wolves, but a rejection can leave us deeply traumatized. Sometimes we are feeling anger, because we believe that our love or our qualifications, are not adequately assessed and other times we are flooded by remorse for the mistakes we think we made.
Psychoanalysts, have hosted many times adults, who as children never felt parental acceptance or love, and as teenagers they were repeatedly rejected by the opposite gender.
Moreover, we are not only shaped by our biological factors, but also by our environment. We grow up learning to be thirsty for recognition from our family, teachers, our friends, and in addition, after the social media’s invasion, we are anxious to “hit” a few likes and smiling emoticons from our friends on Facebook.
We tend to confuse the “Rejection” , with the “Failure”, but the former is more painful. In recent years the failure has been embraced by the self-help manuals as a valuable test, a step that will lead us to the top.
On the other hand, no sympathy is reserved for the rejection. The difference between rejection and failure, is that it always involves other people, those who are told us "no" face to face often and usually for the benefit of our rivals in love, friendship, career or family. "Rejection means that we waited in vain for someone to believe in us or to sympathize with us, but eventually did not share, the way we see the world," Jiang explains.
Let's think positive, of negative answers.
That is why whenever we experience rejection, especially in the most dramatic manifestations, for example:
when our spouse requests a divorce or when we lose our job, is at least simplistic to see it, as a random event, as if we had a flat tyre, while we are on the road, and to settle for a friendly advice like "do not take it personally."
But what are the five (5) steps proposed by Jiang to face the "no" and "goodbye"?
1. To ask something in a specific way: Even in being rejected the rule is that: prevention is the best cure. How will we increase the chances for a positive response? In every rejection, many parameters play an important role, such as who asks, what he asks, by whom it is asked, how he is asking, what time to ask and where you ask," explains the author. We can, for example, have written an excellent book, but this is rejected by the publishing house, because the content is not interesting for a particular issuer or because the cover letter was not attractive enough to get anyone bother to read it.
The Diary of a Young Girl, The Dubliners by James Joyce, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by J. K. Rowling is just some of the (great) projects, that initially received dozens of negative responses to be issued. So in order to receive a positive response to our suggestion (professional, love, it does not matter), its not enough to have content, but must be presented intelligently.
Specifically, Jiang advises:
• Explain in detail the reasons why we are asking something.
• Be honest about our motives.
• To ask something, from the right audience, at the right place and the right time.
• To try and understand the concerns of others and show them that we acknowledge them . For example, when Jiang proposed to the manager of a Starbucks store, to take over for one day the reception of customers (service not offered by the well-known coffee chain) he had to assure him that he has ... sound mind, by saying "I know that what I ask is strange ... “ to finally wrest his positive response.
• Employ our humour. In this way, even though we did not avoid rejection, we will live humanely.
This is not just a figure of speech:
Studies have shown that with laughter, our body produces endorphins, hormones that relieve us, from stress and physical pain.
2. To seek the reasons of rejection: Our spontaneous reaction after a "no“, is to go running away. But if we have the courage to ask someone to explain why, for example, he did not respond to our business proposition positively or broke our friendship, will easily identify the mistakes that we still have room to correct or to be avoided in the future . On the other hand we may find that his decision had nothing to do with us, so our self-esteem would remain intact.
3. To try a new approach: We usually see the "no" that we receive as a dead end, but in some cases it is merely an obstacle that we can bypass, as long as we reconsider our strategy. If, for example, we send our resume to a company demonstrating our interest in a specific position but not they never invite us for an interview, we have two options: either not to ever contact them again or to call and propose to them to have us in mind for another position or at least for an external collaboration.
4. Do not be afraid: An Australian nurse, Brawn Ware, after consulting dozens of people who were near the end of their life, wrote in her book: The Top Five Regrets of the Dying, that the No.1 reason for which people declared regretted, was that they did not live as they wanted. How many studies, careers, relationships renounced because of fear of rejection? But even if this fear finally comes true, the consequences will likely be less dramatic, than is the case of a dream that was never tried to fulfil.
5. To learn after every "no": Maybe this helps us to realize that eventually a certain man, does not suit us or the professional sector we have chosen, isn’t what we want. It’s likely to push us, instead, in order to give our best to achieve our goal. There is, of course, the most zen approach, concludes Jiang: “To distance ourselves from the result and to focus on what we learnt from trying.
For example: the knowledge we gained by studying hard to participate in a graduate, where we were not eventually accepted.
"This requires courage to turn a rejection into something positive" Jiang admits and stresses: "But the attitude we will have towards it, is the one that will make a difference." We can treat it, as a hindrance, as proof of our inability or the hostility of others.
But there is also the choice to take a step back, to look more calmly and to consider what we can learn.
Then, the "no" that we received, may prove to be profitable and not an emotional extravagance.