There are two emotions that drive me most – fear and curiosity (Okay, my love for Starbucks is up there too, but that’s another story). It was the fear of rejection and my curiosity about how humans behave that led me to do my 100 Days of Rejection Therapy.
Meanwhile, a lot of us have heard the story of One Red Paperclip, where a guy used social media to trade a red paper clip a few times up all the way to a house. I want to try the same thing, but with a twist of Rejection Therapy. Instead of using social media, I plan to knock on real doors 10 times in an unknown neighborhood and see what I can get with a dollar bill. I am afraid of knocking on stranger’s doors but I am curious to see the results. Fear and curiosity teamed up, yet again.
Would I end up with something worth more than a dollar, less than a dollar, or nothing but a bunch of rejections?
After the helmet, I would be lying to say I wasn’t fantasizing a little bit about receiving a house. If I knocked on 100 doors maybe I would get it, but getting a house wasn’t the game. In fact, it was never about getting things but seeing the power of trade and asks. Indeed, I felt better about giving away the helmet than getting it.
This brought along another thought – in sales, people focus on making the sale rather than giving the pitch. If someone goes through a perfect sales pitch, but the customer doesn’t buy it is considered a failure, or at least a non-success. However, in my experience it was giving the pitch that was the most fun, not the results. I could control what I said but couldn’t control people’s reactions. So why should I define success by something I can’t control?
Learning: 1. Try this attitude – ask and trade, prepare to be amazed.
2. Don’t focus on the results which you can’t control, but on the actions which you can control. In one of my favorite leadership books, Wooden on Leadership by UCLA’s legendary basketball coach, John Wooden, the old coach explained his philosophy of working on controllable actions rather than uncontrollable results. In fact, it was his relentless focus on actions that produced the results – 10 NCAA championships.