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How to Stop Taking Rejection Personally


I can’t tell you how many times people tell me they “could never” be in sales. When I ask why, I get vague answers about not liking to sell or not being good at it. Eventually, when I bring it up, they’ll agree that one of the big issues is, they couldn’t handle the rejection.

Most people’s default in life and in their business is to avoid having people say ‘no’ to them at all costs. No one likes to be rejected but the results of this mindset are lost opportunities, reduced business, and a shrinking comfort zone. We must change how we handle rejection in order to lead more successful and happier lives.

I teach two major ways to stop taking rejection personally.

The first is to reframe the focus of the rejection. Understand that rejection is never personal even if it’s about you.Picture this: a woman is walking down the street in a white dress covered with large red cherries wearing a giant red hat, too. You and I are walking past her, and you tell her, “I love your outfit!” Of course, she seems happy to hear that. I say, “I think your outfit is horrible.” I imagine she’d be offended and maybe hurt. It’s not a nice thing to say for sure but here’s the question: which one of us is correct? Me? Or you?

The answer is, neither. There is no right or wrong – just our opinions based on our own beliefs and past experiences. To achieve real freedom, this woman should not take either of our comments personally. The positive and the negative. While they are made about her, they reflect who we are, not her.

When you hear people say things and instead of internalizing them,remember everything being said is a reflection of who they are and not who you are. It takes practice but you can reach a much more effective state of mind when you do. As you can imagine, this works in selling, leading a team, and everything in between.

And this brings me to the second way to stop taking rejection personally which is to maintain a level of emotional detachment.

Sales professionals are best served when they remain detached from the emotional reaction when getting a yes or a no. It’s easy to fall into the trap of looking for validation from prospects or customers about your company, your product, and even about you.

Unfortunately doing so can send you on emotional rollercoaster – with constant ups and downs – which is hard to get off. I’ve been guilty of this and it requires mindfulness to avoid doing it. Yeses and no’s happen all day long in sales. A yes doesn’t mean you’re a sales genius and a no doesn’t mean you’re a total failure. Look at each objectively and take the next step forward, avoiding “reading” into what either answer means about you.

Practice developing these two mindsets simultaneously and you will find yourself enjoying a new level of personal emotional freedom which will translate into better results in every area of your life!

Andrea Waltz

Andrea Waltz is the co-founder of Courage Crafters, Inc. and co-author of the best-selling book, Go for No! Yes is the Destination, No is How You Get There, a short, powerful fable for organizations and sales professionals of any kind who must overcome fears of failure and rejection to be successful. For more NOtivation from Andrea, visit


2 Responses

  1. Oh how I enjoyed this article!

    Sales is such a gift of confidence that will totally change your career and life!

    Thanks Andrea

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