Story time! Who's excited? After college, but before I was a photographer, I did a stint in multi level marketing. (Think Mary Kay, but it wasn't Mary Kay) It was totally legit, I totally promise. To my (and everyone who watched me jump head first into it) surprise, I really enjoyed it. The support and training was unmatched and sometimes I miss the community of women that I got to talk to weekly while I was running my little business. I learned so much from the experience I got with that company, and I want to share one of those lessons with you all today!
What are we so afraid of anyway?
The sentiment exists in many different forms: "Ask and you shall receive." "You miss 100% of the shots you don't take." Cliched one-liners boiling down to the same root principle... put yourself out there. But putting ourselves out there seems so shake-in-your-boots-scary, because each time we do it we make ourselves vulnerable to the dreaded word that we never EVER want to hear: NO.
What is it about hearing the word "NO" that strikes such fear into the depths of our souls and leaves us paralyzed on the sidelines? Why are we so afraid of it? What is the worst thing that can happen when we hear it? No, seriously. What is the worst thing? The worst thing is that we respond, "Ok, well thanks anyway." That's not so bad-why are we left so terrified?
I'll be honest, I don't have the answer to this. Maybe one of you lovely people does and you can share it with us and help us all reach enlightenment this morning! For me, the only trick I've learned to do to get around my fear of hearing the word "NO" is to numb myself to it and make it a game. I learned this trick from my mentors in multi level marketing and it's brilliant and it absolutely works.
Here's what you do...
You take a piece of paper and a pen (or multi colored markers if you're feeling snazzy), and you write the word NO one hundred times all over the paper. Then you take the paper and you hang it up by your desk. Each time you get a "NO" from someone you excitedly cross one of the 100 no's off your sheet. The idea is, that if you can put yourself out there enough to get 100 people to say NO to you, you'll get some pretty incredible YES-es as well. So as you start to cross of the NO's, you get closer and closer to your big YES moment. I didn't have to cross out all 100 before I started getting some great YES moments myself. Just the act of turning a rejection into an exciting milestone makes you more prone to trying.
You only need a few...
I've been turned down for things so many times. You guys, I get turned down ALL THE TIME. It's gotten to the point where I'm not scared to email big companies, or big names and ask them crazy things because I'm used to hearing NO and to me, it's worth it to get a few NO's if it means that I'll get a crazy awesome YES thrown in there every now and then. Because I don't need 100 YES-es.
I only need a few big ones. :) And you only need to start asking to be on your way to your own big YES. So get going! Ask. Leap. Try. And keep trying. You'll only get the YES if you first risk hearing the NO.
To make this whole thing really easy for you, I put together a free download sheet of 100 No's. Feel free to save it and print it out and start crossing those babies off as you work closer and closer to your BIG YES MOMENTS.