Because I’ve discovered a strategy for beating all fears. It comes in the form of "rejection attempt".
This wasn't easy for me. As someone who grew up wanting to be an entrepreneur, I never believed in any sort of self-help or even business training. I thought worrying about my emotions were for the weak. Instead, I should worry about real world achievements, such as making great products that people use or inventing awesome technologies that change the world.
My mindset changed when:
1. I witnessed how much fear of failure and rejection had held me back in the first 30 years of my life. I didn’t put myself out there and stayed in the cozy comfort zone. When I had good ideas, I quickly abandoned them after someone I trusted told me how dumb they were, only to see someone else made it a wild success later.
2. I eventually went all in trying to pursue my entrepreneurial dream and rejection from an investor made me cry and almost abandon everything. It was then I realized how fragile I was in that moment.
It was apparent that fear had made a direct impact on my business and personal life. If I wanted to be a successful entrepreneur or business person I would have to develop “emotional intelligence”.
I did so by having people reject me for a hundred straight days (thanks again to my friend Jason Comely’s inspiration). After my rejection journey, I made a breakthrough. I realized that rejection isn’t something I should shy away from, but something I could use to my advantage.
By getting rejected, I learned not to give a damn about people’s opinions and judgment, and became relentless in going toward my goals. I learned that I can’t control and don't want to manipulate others’ feelings and attitude toward me, and the only thing that mattered was what I can control – my own actions, emotions and reactions.
Lastly, I learned that courage is not like height or even intelligence, which are mostly genetic. Instead, it’s like muscle, and much of which can be gained through exercise. In this case, repeatedly seeking rejection is the exercise.
This past month, I designed and hosted my first ever product – The Rejection Gym. Six brave souls took the challenge to be rejected everyday together with me for 30 days. The results were nothing short of astonishing (I will go into Rejection Gym later). I learned that I was helping people to not only overcome their fear of rejection, but fear of a lot of things – judgment, networking, failure, saying NO, public speaking… It’s like finding a remedy… or exercise to overcome fear.
As part of this series, I will tackle the most common fears and how you can use rejection attempts to overcome them. I call this series “Rejection Remedy”. Stay tuned!
Also, let me know what your biggest fear is. I will help you to beat it.