Tag Archives: Resilience

rejection < RESILIENCE — The REal opportunity to REvise & REcreate

When is a balloon really a balloon? You buy a package of balloons and you have a little bag of lifeless colorful containers. What you really have is a bag of potential. These plastic, rubber, or Mylar envelopes are just waiting to become something; they’re balloons in waiting.

That balloon will get big and round or perhaps it is a longer tubular shape. You cannot really tell until you put some air in them, quite a bit of air actually. The air on the inside keeps stretching the colorful skins into big beautiful balloons. If it pops it makes a loud sound and explosion. So we can tell there is a lot of air (or helium) inside exerting quite a bit of pressure.

A balloon isn’t really a balloon, until it is tested. Those balloons you get with your singing telegram or for your birthday are probably expendable. Move to a reusable balloon now. Have you ever gone ballooning, taken a ride in a hot air balloon, or been to the balloon races (Head to Reno in early September)? The balloon is constantly tested, and retested over an over again.

The concept of RE is an important idea to chat about for a minute. But, I want to start at the opposite end of RE first.

In life and leadership, we need to understand and think about RESILIENCE. Resilience is generally a topic we go to after some sort of Rejection, Refusal, Rebuff, Refutation, Revoke, or repeal. Not so much fun eh? Just reading these words can probably cut deep and we can instantly think of a time (probably more like a whole bunch of times) that this happened to us.

REvising, RElearning, REbuilding, REfocusing, REflecting, REset, REplay

We need to REFRAME any rejection that happens to us. When do we learn? I didn’t ask how do we learn (that was the last blog post). WHEN do we learn? When does learning happen? There is no NEW learning; there is RElearning (there is that RE- word again).

We learn when we make mistakes. We learn when we fall down. Yeah, yeah we learn at other times too. BUT when do we remember the lesson? I am guessing that after a little sting, the learning is more of apparent, or it has a little more import. This is why video games have a REset button. This is why we have instant REplay. It is why we have REwind on the TiVo and DVR. It’s the do over of life.

REsilience, REjoice, REcreate, REbuild, REmodel, REstore, REmake

Just like that balloon we are resilient. We can bounce back and we can rebuild and rejoice while we are taking what we learned from that situation or experience. I am not the first one to say this (I think I first read it in Steven Covey’s 7 Habits book over twenty years ago). Failure isn’t fatal & People don’t fail they quit. I sold life insurance for a number of years. The chance for “rejection” occurred a few times in that sales/service process.

I have studied leadership and identity for a number of years now. Resilience is part of this building of our leadership ability and capacity. I found a book entitled, Rejection (1982) by John White. In the book he tells stories and reports on people who were rejected a time (or lots of times). He has the typical stories about Henry Ford, Thomas Edison, and others that have been told and REtold repeatedly. I love his THREE THINGS ABOUT REJECTION –
1. Rejection is not the same as failure.
2. It is 2-way – while we are facing rejection, we are also doing some rejecting.
3. Rejection is necessary. Lack of it would be disastrous.

Read #3 again – REJECTION IS NECESSARY. What?! Why is that? How could that be? When we are rejected, we REvise and REsubmit. Rejection re-energizes us to win and to create victory. It helps us to see things in a different light. Think about that guy or girl you may have been rejected by…chances are 50/50 that rejection can be seen as, “whoa, I dodged a bullet on that one.” Without REverse on the gearshift, we would still be sitting in the same parking space.

There is a great song that says it best – Tubthumping by Chumbawumba – I actually thought the song was called, I get knocked down.

I get knocked down
But I get up again
You’re never going to keep me down

In another verse, it goes on….
He sings the songs that remind him Of the good times
He sings the songs that remind him Of the better times

Don’t cry for me
Next door neighbor

I get knocked down
But I get up again

You’re never going to keep me down
We’ll be singing When we’re winning We’ll be singing

When was your last bout of REsilience?

Notice the question…it wasn’t directed at the rejection (where I would submit a lot of us tend to focus the energy). When was the last time you got knocked down? When was the last time you got up again?

How big can you inflate the balloon that encompasses your capacity? When were you last stretched and tested? You might get knocked down…but ya gotta get up again, and again, and again. We have to get up one more time than we feel knocked down.

2 quotes – The first I have heard over and over. The second, I think I am going to have this one tattooed… or maybe just printed and framed next to my front door.

“That which doesn’t kill me will make me stronger.” -Nietzsche

“We must be willing to get rid of the life we’ve planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.” -Joseph Campbell

Tubthumping — do you need to be reminded of it?

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