Why the fear of rejection is destroying your business and how to stop it!
Rejection, traditionally, is a big smelly bag of poo that no one wants anything to do with. Unfortunately it’s a natural part of life that we all experience at some time or other.
However, I learned a long time ago that the fear of rejection is often more damaging than the actual rejection itself. It makes us act in ways that ultimately sabotage our best efforts.
A LONG DRAWN OUT BUT INFINITELY RELATABLE EXAMPLE
Say you’ve got a date lined up? You’re excited, you think this one could actually tick all the boxes but then that creeping fear of rejection sets in. You start telling yourself stories about how you’re probably not pretty enough, not funny enough …just not good enough. So the day before you make some excuse and call off the date.
But what if none of what your inner stupid was saying was true? What if this guy thought you were the prettiest, funniest, goodest enough human he’d ever laid eyes on and you’d gone on to build a beautiful life together?
And you’d missed out on that? Urgh!
Instead, go on the date, be your YOUest you, and just see what happens.
Turn up being 100% your authentic self in all your snort-laughing, flappy-mess glory. Don’t be a trimmed down version of you because he’ll find out who the real you is eventually and by then you’re all invested and stuff but it was never destined to work. Or even worse maybe you turn up being what you ‘think ‘ he wants and he’ll be turned off when actually he could have loved every atom of your real self. Does that make sense? What I’m saying is be you because the right people will fall head over heels for you and the wrong ones, well they were always the wrong ones.
I’m going to let you in on a secret revelation I had that literally changed the course of my life.
I want you to know on your deepest levels that if whatever you’re pursuing doesn’t work out then it was just because it was wrong.
Just let that really sink in for a second.
It is purely because there was something about your energies that just didn’t align. It was not because you did anything wrong or were anything wrong. IT was just wrong. Simple.
Now I’m going to steer gently away from that analogy because this is starting to sound like a broken hearts column and that’s not why we’re here. We all feel this way sometimes.
But the thought process can be redirected. I want you to take that analogy and use it to reframe any kind of rejection. It is NOT personal. It’s just dynamics. It’s the very reason why I wouldn’t get upset if someone chose to work with another coach over me. It’s not because I did something bad or because I have a terrible personality, it’s purely because our energies didn’t align. And I’m happy that they found the coach who could give them exactly what they needed because that’s why we’re all in this. To make people’s lives better.
THE MOST BEAUTIFUL GIFT YOU CAN GIVE YOURSELF: RADICAL ACCEPTANCE AND SELF COMPASSION
I accepted myself many years ago for exactly the way I am. Every now and then I uncover a flaw that needs some work but I’m not hard on myself (not too hard anyways) so I work on it and grow. This means that I’ve given myself the most beautiful gift. The gift of compassion.
So when I meet someone who I would love to work with but who doesn’t wish to work with me, I know in my core that there is nothing wrong with me, it’s just a dynamic that doesn’t work for them. You just have to be ok with that.
When you do learn to be ok with that you will find a freedom that is unlike anything else. Suddenly all those uncomfortable feelings you get when you see a competitor doing well will fade away and be replaced with a sense of community. You’ll find many more opportunities for collaboration and growing your business because you will have dropped the barriers that were hemming you in.
Oh yeah, barriers? You may think they are for keeping people out but actually what they really do is trap you inside. Free yourselves, drop your barriers, allow yourselves to be vulnerable and yes there will be testing times and the occasional human who takes advantage but, in my humble experience, the advantages FAR outweigh the down sides.
WHAT’S THIS GOT TO DO WITH MY BUSINESS I HEAR YOU CRY?
Everything! It has everything to do with your business because if you haven’t gotten to the stage where you fully accept yourself in all your baddass bitch glory then you may be making decisions that don’t add anything to your beautiful business. And in some cases are damaging it.
If you’re suffering impostor syndrome then you won’t be converting leads that you actually have all the skills to serve as clients. And you’ll be failing only because you are afraid. Not because you’re not good enough.
I was chatting, this week, with a client about some money mindset issues and why she found it so difficult to talk about pricing with her clients. We eventually got to the bottom of it. She creates a very bespoke item that is worth its weight in gold but there are lesser versions available off the shelf at a fifth the price. She has had a number of conversations where she was told by prospective clients that what she was providing (which includes a 121 personal service as well as the product itself) was too expensive. This meant that she had developed this ‘need’ to be brave (her words) when bringing up the cost. Each time she was preparing herself for rejection. I simply said to her. “They just aren’t your ideal clients. Just because your beautiful product and valuable service is to expensive for them, it doesn’t mean it is too expensive for what it is”. She said she felt a weigh lift off her chest in that moment and I was so freakin happy to have been able to do that for her!!!!
So stop being afraid of rejection, stop being afraid of failure because once you learn to overcome these fears you will have all the confidence you need to sell your services. Would you buy from someone who didn’t have faith in their own abilities?
If you try to convince your potential clients to believe in you before you even believe in you, they will not convert and all that does is serve to compound the negative thought cycle of ‘I’m not good enough’.
You are good enough! Start there.
IN CONCLUSION ‘N’ STUFF
So hopefully you are starting to see that rejection isn’t necessarily what we thought it was…all these years! Why didn’t they tell us this stuff in school before all those broken hearts!?
It’s especially not personal when it comes to business. You must never view it as a rejection of you as a person. It’s purely just that your service or the way you provide it just doesn’t work for them and the truly beautiful thing about building a kick ass brand that has a solid identity and strong core values is the confidence it gives you to be ok with being Marmite! And in knowing that you really don’t have to please all the people all the time. Find your tribe by being the YOUest you possible and you’ll never feel that rejection again because the ‘wrong ones’ won’t even get on your radar. Now go show yourself some love, acceptance and a ton of compassion.