The Big Ideas

If a person who fears rejection were suddenly unafraid of it, what might she be capable of?”

People could react to the same request very differently.

Any rejection can have hidden upsides, if only we are willing to look for them.

When I was confident, friendly, and open, people seemed more inclined to go along with my request; even if they said no, they at least stayed engaged longer. –Jia Jiang

The way to get startup ideas is not to try to think of startup ideas. It’s to look for problems, preferably problems you have yourself. –Paul Graham

Mastering Rejection

  • Rejection seemed less like “the truth” and more like an opinion.
  • It’s as if becoming a master of a craft requires not just great skills, but also the ability to weather rejections to get to an acceptance—not to mention an unfailing belief in themselves and their own work.
  • The question we should ask about an idea is not ‘How do I avoid rejection?’ but ‘Is my idea worthy of rejection?’

Rejection Demystified

Rejection is human interaction with two sides. It often says more about the rejector than the rejectee, and should never be used as the universal truth and sole judgment of merit.

Every rejection has a number. If the rejectee goes through enough rejections, a no could turn into a yes.

The Why Question

Sustain the conversation after the initial rejection. The magic word is “why,” which can often reveal the underlying reason for the rejection and present the rejectee with the opportunity to overcome the issue.

By explaining the reason behind the request, one has a higher chance to be accepted.

Tips To Handle Rejection

Retreat, Don’t Run: By not giving up after the initial rejection, and instead retreating to a lesser request, one has a much higher chance of landing a yes.

Collaborate, Don’t Contend: Never argue with the rejector. Instead, try to collaborate with the person to make the request happen.

Switch Up, Don’t Give Up: Before deciding to quit or not to quit, step back and make the request to a different person, in a different environment, or under a different circumstance.

Say I

Starting the request with the word “I” can give the requestor more authentic control of the request. Never pretend to think in the other person’s interests without genuinely knowing them.

Points To Keep In Mind

Acknowledge Doubts: By admitting obvious and possible objections to your request before the other person, one can increase the trust level between the two parties.

Target the Audience: By choosing a more receptive audience, one can enhance the chance of being accepted.

Patience and Respect: Rejection is usually a hard message. Delivering the message with the right attitude can go a long way to soften the blow. Never belittle the rejectee.

Lessons Learned

Be Direct: When giving a rejection, present the reason after the rejection. Avoid long and convoluted setup and reasoning.

Offer Alternatives: By offering alternatives to get a yes, or even simple concessions, one can make the other person a fan even in rejection.

Motivation: Rejection can be used as one of the strongest motivations to fuel someone’s fire for achievement.

Self-Improvement: By taking the motion out of rejection, one can use it as an effective way to improve an idea or product.

Lessons Learned

Be Direct: When giving a rejection, present the reason after the rejection. Avoid long and convoluted setup and reasoning.

Offer Alternatives: By offering alternatives to get a yes, or even simple concessions, one can make the other person a fan even in rejection.

Motivation: Rejection can be used as one of the strongest motivations to fuel someone’s fire for achievement.

Self-Improvement: By taking the motion out of rejection, one can use it as an effective way to improve an idea or product.

Freedom Matters

Freedom to Ask: We often deprive ourselves of the freedom to ask for what we want in fear of rejection and judgment. But amazing things often happen only after we take the first step.

Freedom to Accept Yourself: Our inner need for approval-seeking forces us to constantly look for acceptance from other people. Yet the people from whom we need acceptance the most is ourselves.

Detachment From Results

By focusing on controllable factors such as our efforts and actions, and by detaching ourselves from uncontrollable outcomes such as acceptance and rejection, we can achieve greater success in the long run.

Empathy And Value

All rejections are shared by many people in the world. One can use rejection and suffering to obtain empathy and understanding of other people.

Repeated rejections can serve as the measuring stick for one’s resolve and belief. Some of the greatest triumphant stories come only after gut-wrenching rejections.

Sometimes the most brutal rejections in life signal a new beginning and mission for the rejectee.

The Key Takeaways Of The Book

When you are not afraid of rejection and it feels like you have nothing to lose, amazing things can happen.

Becoming a master of a craft requires not just great skills, but also the ability to weather rejections to get to an acceptance—not to mention an unfailing belief in yourself and your own work.

What you need is not acceptance from others but acceptance from yourself. Being comfortable with who you are is a prerequisite—not the result—of seeking others’ approval.

From the book:-
Rejection Proof by Jia Jiang

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