“Prove me wrong”
These were some of several words once said straight to my face by my very first interviewers. That was 2008, my first taste of job application, my untold story of rejections. I was an undergrad and underdog. Looking for a decent job was like searching for gold nuggets in the sand. Then series of rejections, one after the other. For a week, more than 10 companies turned me down, mostly during initial interviews.
Yes, initial interview! I overheard them saying, “he has stiff English (Bisaya kasi eh) and he is not confident”
I admit, my English was very bad that time. One of the recruiters told me that she wanted to hire me but I was inexperience and unfit for the job, so she can’t do something about it. It might be that it was just out of sympathy. That day I understood she’s working for a company not a charity. Empathy wasn’t just enough. She gave me a doleful smile and told me to prove her wrong.
So, I packed my bag and told my mother I need a ticket to go back home, I was jobless and downcast. I still had with me some notes on things they said, their suggestions, their corrections, top reasons why I was rejected. With so much frustration, I whispered in despair; “Someday, I’ll prove you wrong”.
I admit that it was a statement of resentment. It feels like saying “Look, I’ll come back soon and wait for my revenge”.
Back home, I practiced daily to improve myself, I attended trainings, and seminars. I did not waste a single time. I pushed myself to level-up and to enhance my communication skills. It was tough because I am personally introvert and a quiet person. All I knew, I had to do it for myself and get out from my comfort zone. At first, there was no sign of improvement but I never give-up.
There wasn’t a time that I lose hope because I was very focus on training myself. I was always looking for the long-term benefits. A band guitarist becomes great because he practiced everyday. Moreover, I was willing to give myself a chance and take an extra-mile.
Fast forward, I already have a decent job and I was hired as part of that company who first rejected me. It was all then a success story. Nevertheless, up until today I still hear the echoing voices saying “Prove me wrong”. I asked myself ; ”Do I still need to prove something?”
Many times we often encounter rejections in life. It could be not being able to get the job we ever wanted or the promotion we’ve been waiting for. It could also be coming from people close to us, from our love-ones, business partners, and even clients. These rejections, sometimes, hurt so deep that it is hard to be forgotten.
I like the story of a young man who was applying for every university in the U.S. but each one rejected him. Rejected from Harvard 10 times he said, “One day, I should go teach there”. Even after applying for 30 different jobs, all he ever faced was plain rejection in 3 simple words “YOU’RE NO GOOD!”
When he applied for KFC, he was the only one got turned down out of 24 applicants BUT that only made him stronger…
He is Jack Ma, the richest man in China and the owner of ALIBABA the biggest e-commerce in the world!
So how do we deal with rejection? Even people in the bible were not exempted. Jesus experienced rejection when his disciples left him that night he was about to be captured, Joseph felt rejected as his brothers sold him to slavery, and David felt the same when people of his own were running after him to take his life.
Instead of saying I’ll prove them wrong, why not say I’ll prove to them that the promises of God are right. Instead of being resentful, be the person who finds joy in rejection. Always look on the other side, things you can learn from the situation! Hebrews 13:5 says; “I will never leave you, I will never forsake you”.
Let us together ponder on these words today. Always remember, rejections are just temporary. Enjoy the rest of your day…
Are you inspired on this article on facing rejections? Read my story: From broke to first Million.
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