It’s been awhile but I’ve experienced tremendous growth since the last time I wrote.
You see, I got a rejection letter. Yeah, and the email came through on Valentine’s weekend. Needless to say my husband was at more than a loss.
Can I just admit? I took some time to cry and wonder why in the world a successful businesswoman in her own right would ever subject herself to this crazy publishing world?
We all process things differently. I did your standard sit-in-shock cry and—in typical me fashion—said a prayer and went to bed. Everything always looks better after you sleep on it, right?
I woke up, and the email was still there with a resounding “pass.” After wallowing for 24 hours, I sent off an email to my mentors and went back to my day job—the day job in which I put in fourteen hours, on Valentine’s weekend. (Are you feeling sorry for my husband yet?)
Here’s the reply I got back from one of my mentors: “Best rejection ever!”
You got it. It’s exactly what she sent me via email. And you know, after my mouth hit the ground and I stared at the screen awhile, I saw that she was right.
Perspective, people. Perspective.
I wrote my first book, went to conference, got contracted with an amazing agent and submitted my work. I had accomplished something. I went back and re-read the rejection letter—and while I wasn’t jumping for joy, it could have been a lot worse.
Then I got my second perspective check. My agent said, “No = next opportunity.”
So, I dusted myself off and started plotting a new story to be ready for the next opportunity.
I learned four important things that weekend:
- Allow yourself time to be upset, but move on. In that short twenty-four hours, I had friends praying and my family surrounded me with love and hugs and the ceremonial offering of Blue Bell Ice Cream.
- Pick your friends and mentors carefully. If I’d sent that email or contacted “certain persons,” they would have killed my dreams. They would have enjoyed saying, “What were you thinking?” Choose your friends wisely. Listen to the right voices.
- Get out of your head. You are your worst critic. Don’t live there. Get out and move on.
- Redefine no to yourself. No = next opportunity.
Oh, and I should tell you that my husband showed up at my work with a steak dinner for two that night. Yep, I will keep him.
So tell me, what wisdom have you gleaned from rejection letters?