“When you’re following your inner voice, doors tend to eventually open for you, even if they mostly slam at first.”
― Kelly Cutrone

This is a hard one. So in a quest to add to income streams through writing, your girl has been sending out sample articles to a few cool companies. And I haven’t heard anything yet, so it felt like fate when one landed in my lap. I didn’t search for it, it was sent straight into my Whatsapp with an unknown number. The message read, ” Hi Mandi I got your number from (a friend we both know),” and the person went on about what she was looking for and sent the brief, all was cool.

I spent a few days writing the article and used all their reference articles. And to be honest I didn’t understand the full scope of what they needed, as their target audience was too wide. It is hard to write for a wide audience (the message gets lost). I soldiered on and learned a few things.

Rejection is normal…

Yes, rejection is normal but it is not easy! When the email informing me that they are going with someone else, my initial response was, “Huh? What did I miss?” Deep down I knew, while I wrote a good article, I missed who the article was for.

LESSON ONE: Have the courage to ask for clarity.

I think I was so surprised by how this opportunity just landed in my lap that -it had to be a done deal, right? WRONG!

I was lucky enough to receive a rejection that came with the “good new-bad news-good news” combo, the sandwich of rejections. This is when the people take the time to explain why you were rejected, (which by the way is a win because most people don’t have time for that) and the offer of future work projects, (yes, take this last bit with a pinch of salt depending on the reason for the rejection.)

If your rejection doesn’t come with a reason then :

LESSON: Have the courage to ask what you missed and where you can improve for future projects.

Here’s how you win

How I decided to swiftly move on from this rejection:

  • I remembered that this fell into my lap and I didn’t go looking for it.
  • Realised that people around me see me as a writer they can recommend for writing jobs (that’s a win!)
  • Learned to ask for clarity when it comes to a brief that is unclear
  • Learned that the subject matter in question is NOT something I enjoy writing about and so i now know what I don’t want and it has helped narrow my search
  • The rejection came with an explanation that made sense and confirmed my sneaky suspicion as I mailed it.
  • I also learned that there is a whole market for ghost writers in the business space, for things as “simple” as posts on LinkedIn…and I mean like post updates not long editorials, but the “what’s on your mind?” post prompt we have on Facebook.

Am I saying don’t take a moment to be sad? NOPE! I was a little bummed and I even asked myself to stay in the bummed phase for a few hours. But the way my brain works, it has to move on to the next thing and find the silver lining. And so it kicked into gear and looked for what good came out of this experience?

Put things into perspective

How to win the rejection game, you must put things into perspective. It is harder when it is something you were really gunning for. But think of it this way: how many things in life were you so sure you wanted and when they missed you, they gave you room to blossom into better things?

And if you have not had that experience, maybe you have not connected the dots or you may have beat yourself up and failed to see that what happened, happened for you and NOT to you.

Remember why you started

And then remember why you started. Sometimes it takes other people a little while to see what you have to bring to the table. And sometimes you need a little more time to refine your conviction around that, so be kind to yourself and jump straight back in. Every rejection is an opportunity to fine-tune, don’t let it stop you… Be the Rasta of your craft, that guy doesn’t care about our opinions! And I have a feeling one day he will shock us all and finally paint a person we can all recognize.

What to do next?

You have been bruised and so your entire body is telling to step away and go lick your wounds, and yes there is space for that but it doesnt have to take place in isolation. First i suggest a celebration, a small one man celebration or with those closest to you. And then you MUST get back on the horse. Send out another application or enter a writing competition anything that puts your work out there again.

When you do this, you teach yourself to handle rejection in quick turn around times and if your next rodeo lands in a YES! You learn that life can change in an instant!

Over to you: What is the one way you get over rejection? Comment below and don’t forget to subscribe so you never miss a post or a giveaway.

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