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10 Benefits Of Rejection That Will Surely Impress You

10 Benefits Of Rejection That Will Surely Impress You

Like most writers, I’ve long since lost count of the number of rejections I’ve received. Rejections for written pieces (“This does not suit our needs at this time.”), rejections at job interviews (“You’re very intelligent and seem like you would be an asset, but we’ve decided to hire someone else.”), and even rejections in my personal life (“You’re a sweet guy, J.S., and I like you a lot, but…”). Rejections for this, that, and the other thing. If there’s one thing I know really, really well, it’s rejection. I also know the slow-burning anger in the gut, the frustration, and the despair that comes with it. If you’ve ever been rejected and felt like you wanted to throw a full-on three-year-old temper tantrum, install a new skylight by Hulk-smashing your couch through the ceiling, or just sit in a corner and cry until your body shrivels up into a mummy, then you know exactly how I felt, and you know that I know just how you feel.

Rejection is an unfortunate but necessary part of the human experience. Everyone experiences rejection at some point in their life, whether they realize it or not. What many people who experience this don’t ever realize are the benefits of rejection. While this may sound self-contradictory, ask anyone who’s ever been turned down for a job or had someone they cared about say they weren’t interested in the person that way. Most of the time rejection can actually be a very positive thing, if you just look at it the right way. Here are 10 benefits of rejection to consider the next time you find yourself in this position.

1. Rejection motivates us to do better.

“The position’s been filled.” “This isn’t what we’re looking for right now.” “You’re a sweet guy/girl, but…” Ouch! We’ve all been there and done that at some point, and it’s unquestionably frustrating. When confronted with rejection, this can be a sign that you need to be doing something you’re not, or stop doing something you are. Figuring out what that is will put you on the path to doing better, and experiencing less rejection in the future.

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2. Rejection reminds us we’re human.

human-evolution-1

    Everyone’s the star of their own movie, and this can lead to an understandable but inaccurate sense of one’s own importance in the larger scheme of things. Rejection is actually a good thing because everyone at some point could stand to be taken down a peg or two. Rejection helps us here because it reminds us we’re all only human, no matter how extraordinary we’d like to believe we are.

    3. Rejection teaches patience.

    Some kinds of rejection can be hurtful, while others can be outright devastating. Not landing that job you’ve spent a month sending resumes, emails, and faxes back and forth about can be one of the worst rejections because the bills and the cupboard don’t care about your hurt feelings. However, this is one time when rejection can actually help you by teaching you to be patient and keep moving. You may not get what you want right away, but if you’re willing to work hard and be patient, you will eventually find yourself where you want to be.

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    4. Rejection causes us to explore different paths.

    The Path Less Traveled By

      Sometimes rejection is life’s way of telling us we need to look at a different path to get where we want to be. Maybe the path we’re trying to take to get to our goals is all wrong for us, or maybe there’s a better way and we just haven’t realized it yet. Rejection can be a positive experience if you’re willing to take another road or try a new way of achieving the same thing.

      5. Rejection forces us to reevaluate ourselves.

      Many people deal badly with rejection. This is natural. Rejection is a painful experience. However, when someone hears the same thing enough times, they generally start to listen. “You have great skills with numbers, but you’re not too hot at dealing with other people,” is an example of such a rejection. Learning how to remake ourselves to be more goal-oriented, more people-oriented, or tweak aspects of our personalities to get along better with those around us is an important benefit of rejection people tend to overlook.

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      6. Rejection makes us reconsider our goals.

      As a species we tend to ignore warning signs that are there for our benefit, like the person who struggles through an MBA program because they’ve been told their whole lives that’s the ticket to money and power, when what they really want to do is play the violin in an orchestra. Then the person gets a job interview and is told they were woefully underqualified. At the same time, the local orchestra is looking for a third-chair violin player. Your passions will always shine through, and sometimes rejection is a way for the world to force us to consider that impossible dream we’ve always wanted to chase rather than the “safe goal” that’s going to make us miserable in the long run.

      7. Rejection creates opportunities for change.

      Think about the last time someone said, “I would never have found this job/met this person/moved to this place if the other place hadn’t refused to hire me/person hadn’t refused to marry me/town had more jobs available.” Rejection can be a powerful force for analyzing why we go for the goals we do and what it is about these goals that drives us on, or away. It can also be a good time for introspection and considering one’s reasons for going after certain things, people, jobs, or situations. If we would only take the time to listen to ourselves about these things, as a race we’d be a lot happier and a lot more confident in ourselves and our instincts.

      8. Rejection gives us new ways of looking at things.

      Everybody gets tunnel vision once in a while. We focus on one goal, one person, or one dream to the exclusion of all else. Rejection can give us a time to pause and take another look at our objectives and how we’re trying to meet them. In this case, the idea is to look around with new eyes and consider, not only new ways of getting to the same goal, but how we view our goals and dreams.

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      9. Rejection makes us stronger.

      push-up

        There’s an old saying: The strongest fish is the one that swims upstream. Rejection can often feel like it brings you to a complete halt, but in reality it gives you something to push against. People do not grow stronger when everything is working for them, but when they are forced to cope with the unexpected or the undesirable. In this way, rejection helps us by showing us just how strong, resourceful, and capable we really are when the chips are down.

        10. Rejection is an opportunity for growth.

        Rejection does not have to be an automatic negative. Instead, try looking at rejection as a chance for you to grow and learn as a person. Maybe you learn from rejection that your aftershave gives people sinus headaches, or that your demeanor in a work environment puts people off. The lessons you learn from rejection can be applied to just about any facet of your life, making you a stronger, kinder, more “polished” person.

        8 Habits You Can Adapt to Be Successful at Everything

          While rejection can be painful, you can see it can also be a blessing in disguise. The question now is, how will you deal with rejection? Will you take the opportunity it’s giving you…or install that skylight in your living room? The choice is yours.

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          Last Updated on April 11, 2019

          How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

          How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

          Possessing strong communication skills will help you in every phase of your life. This is especially true in the workplace.

          I have personally worked with several leaders who were masters of communication. A few were wonderful speakers who could tell a great story and get everyone in the room engaged. Those of us in attendance would walk away feeling inspired and eager to help with what came next. Others were very skilled at sharing a clear direction and job expectations.

          I knew exactly what was expected of me and how to achieve my goals. This was the foundation of an energized and vibrant role I was in. What I have found is strong communication skills are incredibly helpful and sometimes critical in how well we perform at work.

          Here we will take a look at how to improve communication skills for workplace success.

          How Communication Skills Help Your Success

          Strong communication skills pave the way for success in many ways. Let’s look at a few of the big ones.

          Create a Positive Experience

          Here are two examples of how well developed communication skills helps create a positive experience:

          When I first moved to the city I now live in, I began a job search. Prior to my first live interview, I was told an address to go to. Upon arriving at the address provided, I drove around and around attempting to find the location. After 15 minutes of circling and looking for the address, I finally grabbed a parking spot and set out on foot.

          What I discovered was the address was actually down an alley and only had the number over the door. No sign for the actual company. The person that gave me those very unclear directions provided a bad experience for me.

          Had they communicated the directions to get there in a clear manner, my experience would have been much better. Instead the entire experience started off poorly and colored the entire meeting.

          As a recruiter, I frequently provide potential candidates with information about a job I’m speaking to them about. In order to do this, I also provide a picture of the overall company, the group they might be joining, and how their role fits in and impacts the entire company.

          Time and time again I have been told by candidates that I have provided the clearest picture of a company and role they have ever heard. They have a positive experience when I clearly communicate to them. Even when the position does not work out for them, often times they will want to stay in touch with me due to the open communication and beneficial experience they had during the interviewing process.

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          Strong communication skills will provide a positive experience in virtually any interaction you have with someone.

          Help Leadership Skills

          It’s certainly a skill all its own to be able to lead others.

          Being a mentor and guiding others towards success is a major hallmark of great leaders. Another characteristic of effective leaders is the ability to communicate clearly.

          As I referenced above, having a leader who can plainly articulate the company’s mission and direction goes a really long way towards being the Captain of the boat that others want to follow. It’s like saying “here’s our destination and this is how we are going to get there” in a way that everyone can get on board with.

          Another critical component of everyone helping to sail the boat in the right direction is knowing what your portion is all about. How are you helping the boat move towards its destination in the manner than is consistent with the leaders’ vision?

          If you have a boss or a manager that can show you what it takes for not only you to be successful, but also how your performance helps the company’s success then you’ve got a winner. A boss with superior communication skills.

          Build Better Teams

          Most of us work in teams of some sort or another. During the course of my career, I have led teams up to 80 and also been an individual contributor.

          In my individual contributor roles, I have been part of a larger team. Even if you are in business for yourself, you have to interact with others in one manner or another.

          If you have strong communication skills, it helps to build better teams. This is true whether you are in an IT department with 100 other fellow programmers or if you own your own business and have customers or vendors you communicate with.

          When you showcase your robust ability to communicate well with others while interacting with them, you are building a better team.

          Now let’s jump in to how to improve communication skills to help you pave the way for your workplace success.

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          How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

          There are many tips, tricks, and techniques to improve communication skills. I don’t want to overwhelm you with too much information, so let’s focus on the things that will provide the biggest return on your time investment.

          Most of these tips will be fairly easy to become aware of but will take time and effort to implement. So let’s go!

          1. Listen

          Ever heard the saying you have two ears and one mouth for a reason? If you haven’t, then here’s the reason:

          Being a good listener is half the equation to being a good communicator.

          People who have the ability to really listen to someone can then actually answer questions in a meaningful way. If you don’t make the effort to actively listen, then you are really doing yourself and the other person a disservice in the communication department.

          Know that person who is chomping at the bit to open his or her mouth the second you stop talking? Don’t be that person. They haven’t listened to at least 1/2 of what you’ve said. Therefore the words that spill out of their mouth are going to be about 1/2 relevant to what you just said.

          Listen to someone completely and be comfortable with short periods of silence. Work on your listening skills first and foremost.

          2. Know Your Audience

          Knowing your audience is another critical component to having strong communication skills. The way you interact with your manager should be different than how you interact with your kids. This isn’t to say you need to be a different person with everyone you interact with. Far from it.

          Here is a good way to think about it:

          Imagine using your the same choice of words and body language you use with your spouse while interacting with your boss. That puts things in a graphic light!

          You want to ensure you are using the type of communication most relevant to your audience.

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          3. Minimize

          I have lunch with a business associate about 3 times a year. We’ve been talking for several years now about putting a business deal together.

          He is one of those people that simply overwhelms others with a lot of words. Sometimes when I ask him a question, I get buried beneath such an avalanche of words that I’m more confused than when I asked the question. Needless to say this is most likely a large portion of why we never put the deal together.

          Don’t be like my lunch business associate. The goal of talking to or communicating with someone is to share actual information. The goal is not to confuse someone, it’s to provide clarity in many cases.

          State what needs to be stated as succinctly as possible. That doesn’t mean you can’t have some pleasant conversation about the weather too.

          The point is to not create such an onslaught of words and information that the other person walks away more confused than when they started.

          4. Over Communicate

          So this probably sounds completely counter intuitive to what I just wrote about minimizing your communication. It seems like it might be but it’s not.

          What I mean by over communicating is ensuring that the other person understands the important parts of what you are sharing with them. This can be done simply yet effectively. Here’s a good example:

          Most companies have open enrollment for benefits for the employees in the fall. The company I work for has open enrollment from November 1 to 15. The benefits department will send out a communication to all employees around October 1st, letting them know open enrollment is right around the corner and any major changes that year. There’s also a phone number and email for people to contact them with any questions.

          Two weeks later, we all get a follow up email with basically the same information. We get a 3rd communication the week before open enrollment and another one 1 day before it starts.

          Finally we get 2 emails during enrollment reminding us when open enrollment ends.

          There’s minimal information, it’s more of a reminder. This is effective over communication.

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          5. Body Language

          The final critical component to how to improve communication skills for workplace success is body language. This is something most of us have heard about before but, a reminder is probably a good idea.

          When I am in a meeting with someone I am comfortable with, I tend to kind of slouch down in my chair and cross my arms. When I catch myself doing this, I sit up straight and uncross my arms. I remember that crossing arms can many times be interpreted as a sign of disagreement or conflict.

          In general, the best rule of thumb is to work towards having open body language whenever possible at work. This means relaxing your posture, not crossing your arms, and looking people in the eye when speaking with them.

          When you are speaking in front of others, stand up straight and speak in a clear voice. This will convey confidence in your words.

          Conclusion

          Possessing strong communication skills will help you in many facets of your life and most certainly in the workplace.

          Good communication helps create better teams, positive experiences with those we interact with, and are critical for leadership.

          There are numerous tactics and techniques to be used to improve communication skills. Here we’ve reviewed how to improve communication skills for workplace success.

          Now go communicate your way to success.

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          Featured photo credit: HIVAN ARVIZU via unsplash.com

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