The power of rejection is a true path to achieve a lot in our life. The difference between high and moderate achievers boils down to how much we can handle rejections.  Successful achievers have more rejections than anybody in their field. Failure for high achievers becomes a normal price they accept.  It does not matter the size or the numbers of the failures. Elon Musk’s rocket launch suffered a spectacularly painful crash a few months ago.  I am sure the pain of this failed project ran very deep in many of his engineers.

The joy of failing 100 times

You might have noticed that some people seem to succeed all of the time. They were accepted to the schools they wanted. They got the scholarships they applied for. They even achieved the jobs they dreamed about. What is their secret? Well, their secret is to achieve 100 rejections a year. This is the real ugly truth, ladies and gentlemen. Successful people achieve more rejections than anybody around them. Amazingly, we only hear about their successes. Personal failure usually makes no noise or even recognition. People show no interest to know or even hear about these failures.

Several years ago, I tried to change my job for around seven years without any success.  I reached a limit of counting my failing attempts in order to spot a pattern.  I even went to the length of asking people if  I had a bad reputation in my field that I was not aware of.  Thankfully, people responded with a resounding, “No.”   I finally was able to focus my energy and effort in one direction — making a deliberate effort of capitalizing on my hard work with the highest rate of return, not relying on luck as a lot of people think and hope. In a way, I decided to share with you my rejection experience to pinpoint what is the best route to follow.

Documenting failure is like lighting a candle to discover the new path.

Failing teaches us how to succeed. It is worth spending the time to document it. It might be the most important strategy to reach your goal. It goes without saying that documenting failures creates a tremendous amount of pain and often results in extreme self-doubt. A part of this pain is not understanding the cause of our failure.  In fact, when we have negative results, it is almost impossible to be able to find the reason.  Usually these failures are due to multiple factors which might come together by coincidence.

One benefit you might enjoy when you start documenting your failure is that you start seeing it as not a big deal.  Your failures, compared to high achievers which you read about in books, are really not that many.  One of the stories I heard and still remember is that Carl Sanders (the founder of KFC) failed over 1,000 times to sell his fried chicken recipe.  At that time when he started establishing his fast food restaurant, he was in his early  sixties.

Colonel Carl Sanders’ failure story has inspired me many times. How many times can we handle failure and rejection? How many times can we handle people telling us we are not that good and still continue to pursue a goal?

Embracing our failures is not always easy, but I do believe that putting a number of 100 rejections to achieve something should be out there. Document these rejections in an excel sheet. You will discover how fun this can be.

Thank you for reading my post. I would love to hear from you.  (Sufalkhaldi@futureandsciencehacks.com).  This post is usually written on Saturdays.

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