Not Yet

“The relationship you have with the word NO… what you think and feel when you hear it, and what you do afterward as a result… is THE single most important factor in determining the level of success you will achieve in your life. That’s why despite having a great product, service or opportunity to offer, so many people fail to succeed in business… and in life.

“You build your pyramid of success on the bricks of failure.”
Richard Fenton, Go for No! (

Let’s face it, “no” isn’t exactly a popular word. It wasn’t much fun hearing “no” when we were kids and wanted to get that toy in a gift shop or that box of cookies at the supermarket. And now that we’re big kids, we probably like it even less.

But here’s one thing I’ve learned about that annoying two-letter word: There are two types of no: the one’s we tell ourselves and the ones we hear from other people. Of the two, the first kind is probably more dangerous and potentially damaging.

Here’s why: When we tell ourselves “No, that’s impossible,” or “No, that’s too hard,” or “No, I can’t do that,” we’re teaching ourselves to be timid and to hold back. As my good friend and mentor, Rob Gilbert puts it on his Success Hotline (973.743.4690), “Most people are timid, they’re intimidated, they hold back.” The end result? They reject themselves. They’re so afraid of failing that they never get out of the starting gate. By saying no to themselves, they rob the world of the opportunity to say yes.

The second type of “no” — the ones we hear from other people — are easier to handle when we remember that they are part of the territory, part of the process of working to accomplish something that matters. As Rob puts it, “No doesn’t mean never, it means ‘not yet.'” Successful people in sales handle no by using the SW6 formula:

1) Some Will
2) Some Won’t
3) So What
4) Someone’s Waiting
5) Stick With it
6) Stop Worrying.

There’s plenty of evidence that up to 85% of success in life = attitude; and only 15% = ability. So developing a winning attitude when it comes to dealing with no makes great sense, doesn’t it?

Here’s an idea: Let’s eliminate no from our mental alphabet by redefining it as “not yet.” And let’s stop saying no to ourselves and stop getting all hot and bothered when someone else — an agent or an editor or whoever — says no. Let’s focus on what counts when it comes to our daily writing goals: our attitude and our effort. Let’s give full effort, let’s go all out, let’s make something happen. And write on!

About karinwritesdangerously

I am a writer and this is a motivational blog designed to help both writers and aspiring writers to push to the next level. Key themes are peak performance, passion, overcoming writing roadblocks, juicing up your creativity, and the joys of writing.
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