I was rejected

A few months ago I applied to present at a one-day conference for writers and teachers.

Yesterday I received a rejection email.

When I got to the second line, “Unfortunately…” I  deleted the email, blasting it into email oblivion as my mind shouted madman things:

“Who are they to reject me?!”

“They don’t know what they’re missing!”

“I’ll show them!”

The next morning, like an embarrassed child, I woke up thinking about what I did.

I got dressed, made coffee, opened the laptop, and began writing.

A few weeks ago I meet up with a writer friend. We were talking about writing, honing the craft, finding time to write, and rejection.

My friend laughed, “I’ve been rejected more times then I can count.”

“Really?” I was surprised by his bluntness. His confidence to announce he’s been rejected.

“Oh yeah. Look, all you can do is keep grinding. Because if you don’t, if let rejection win, it just means you lost.”

I now realize the rejection of my presentation proposal was not about me (how quickly we think everything is about us!)

In fact, I had to accept this hard truth–that other highly-qualified presenters wrote more intriguing proposals then I did. And their proposals impressed the selection committee more than mine.

There’s no sugar coating–rejection hurts. It’s hard to hear you’re not good enough. But rejection is only permanent if we let it become permanent.

Yesterday I sulked.

But today I say–let your rejections go.

Be kind to yourself.

Have a stiff drink.

Read a good book.

Play with your dog.

Take a long walk.

Take a hot shower.

And then, when you realize the only thing that will buoy your spirits is getting back to work, I hope you find both the courage and defiance to get back to work.

Also–my friend, the one I told about you earlier this week–is still waiting to hear about the results of their risk. I told them that many of you reached to wish them well. Thank You.

Be well,


PS (Please Share) – If you know someone who is enduring rejection–please share this post share with them.

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