I have been acting pretty much my entire life. The first play I did, I was Tom Sawyer in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer at the Iowa City Community Theater when I was nine years old. Since then, until now, over thirty years have passed, I have put myself out there, day in and day out, and I’ve been rejected 18,362 times. I try to keep count.
I know rejection. She’s my best friend. I embrace rejection, it’s comforting, it feels good. It makes me stronger and stronger incrementally, every day, rejection upon rejection, it stacks up, layers upon layers, until it reaches to the cosmos. Because I’ve had so much rejection, I don’t fear it. I LAUGH AT IT. Oh you’re going to say no to me? Great. Thank you for another no. You have probably helped me more than saying yes.
And it is yes that I’m more uncomfortable with. Hell, I’ve got the rejection part down cold. But acceptance? Yes, Clint, you got it! Wha? Um…ok. But that was too easy! You’re supposed to say no to me, damn it!
Here’s a bit of advice for you, if you want to grow as a person. If you’re HERE and you want to get THERE. The only way you’re going to get THERE is to start attempting to. You can’t get there until you start trying to get there. You have to start asking for things. Looking for opportunities. Making opportunities out of NOTHING. And when the smallest opportunity comes your way, you have to SEIZE IT.
This is what I’ve been doing lately. I wake up, and say, I’m going to get rejected today at least four times. Let me clarify. When the moment arises in my day when I think, I’d like to do that, or I’d like to say that, or I want that, but if I ask, I’ll probably not get it, WHAM!!! There’s an opportunity for rejection I can mark down for the day. Now I have three more.
And if you think in this way, in this non-conventional way, I guarantee, it will help you get from HERE to WHERE YOU WANT TO BE. It’s not a revolutionary idea, but it’s a change in perception. You don’t look for opportunities per se. You look for opportunities for rejection. I think if you wait around for opportunities, there’s a good chance they’ll never come. So you train your mind to almost APPRECIATE rejection, to see it as an accomplishment, YOU WILL NEVER LOSE IN LIFE. They will say no in their own special way, and you will smile, and feel a sense of accomplishment, and then your acceptance of the rejection will be PRICELESS, and they won’t know what the hell happened. I just told this guy no, and he’s thanking me?!?! And he’s being cool?!?! What the hell? Maybe I made a mistake? Maybe I should’ve told him
Tommorow morning wake up, and say, I want to be rejected four times today, then be very aware when the moment arises in the day to accomplish that goal. And it doesn’t have to be a big thing. It can be the smallest of things.
And in time, it will be more and more difficult for you to find opportunities for rejection. Because people will be saying YES instead of NO. And you will be THERE instead of HERE.
And then you’ll have to figure out how to deal with getting what you want.