The interesting thing about rejection therapy is the variety of things I can try. I can be very serious one day, like when I was trying convince someone to give me a job or a dinner date, and be more light-hearted the next day. On day 36, I tried to relate to my dog and convince the good people at PetSmart to give me a hair-trimming session.
One thing I found interesting was the power of encouraged humor. When I made the request, its outrageousness prompted Christina to laugh out loud. It immediately put my mindset into a humor/joking one, which led me to give out a series of jokes. While I was successful in getting rejected, the discussion was smooth and hilarious. Jon Stewart, one of my favorite comedian, once said he is extremely uncomfortable in an environment where there is no laughing audience. I can now understand why. Joking becomes so much easier when presenter senses a receptive audience.
On the other hand, laughing at someone’s joke can put everyone at ease and even encourage creativity. In one of my favorite books on humor – Sh*t My Dad Says, the author started tweeting a few quotes from his father. People thought they were hilarious and gave very positive feedbacks. He started doing more and more, and eventually wrote a great book.
Learning: rejection or not, humor lubricates the conversation for both parties. When you are engaged in a negotiation session or sales pitch, be open to laugh at other’s jokes. You will both come out feeling good. Unless, of course, the jokes are really bad or the other person wasn’t joking. In that case, either say ‘no’ or just give him a hair-trim.