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Resistance, Rudeness, Rejection – Clutter on the Way to a Breakthrough



I was on a chat recently where someone left a parting Tweet that was the equivalent of leaving a steaming dump on someone else’s living room carpet.  “You mental midgets aren’t giving ME what I need so I am going to take MY glorious presence elsewhere!”  (I’m paraphrasing – but it was just as charming.) Unreal.  Like someone dragged this woman to the chat, held a gun to her head, and forced her to hang around.

A month or so ago, I was at a conference and there was a young man who had committed to daily blogging so that he could develop the habit of writing daily, improve his writing, and increase his online presence.  So far he had been succeeding.  Some of his colleagues, however, just had to weigh in with their two cents “You need to get a life” and “Is business that slow?”

I was recently approached by someone who wanted to do more public speaking.   She asked me how I’ve come by invitations to speak.  When I explained how my involvement in a professional association, my blogging and the different social media platforms, have all led to speaking gigs her response was a snarky “Do you do any actual work?”

On another occasion I was asked what my best lead generation source was.  My response was that speaking, blogging and social media have allowed my to target my list so carefully that I can afford to do high touch, 3-dimensional, direct mail which always results in new business.  “I tried direct mail once.  It didn’t work.”

And it occurred to me that this is why I wince a little bit every time I hear someone talk about crowd-sourcing an idea.

In his book Do The Work, Steven Pressfield contends that for every idea put into action there will be resistance.  Resistance to your goal, your dream, will come.  It’s inevitable. It will come from those you love.  It will come from your colleagues.  It will come from the folks in your favorite Twitter chat or the attendees at your favorite conference.  It will come from that voice in your head.

Why are people so willing to generously dish out the resistance, rudeness, and rejection?  I think there are several reasons, they’re fatigued (life has beaten them down), they’re naturally negative (what a sad way to go through life), they’re justifying their own refusal to change or learn by diminishing your efforts to change and learn.

When the woman who asked for my advice and then wondered aloud if I actually worked, I replied, “There is a part of me that is always relieved that others are not willing to do what I am willing to do.  Be well.”

Choose your mentors very carefully.  Believe in yourself.  Really believe in yourself.  Realize that resistance, rudeness and rejection are the normal flora and fauna on the path to success.  Forge ahead and enjoy the breakthrough.

3 Responses to Resistance, Rudeness, Rejection – Clutter on the Way to a Breakthrough

  1. […] Dawn Westerberg points out in her excellent post, all too often, even when people approach you or ask you questions, your answers are met with […]

  2. Howard Hansen says:

    Levels of resistance and sabotage in our culture are on the rise. These are some characteristics of people who are laboring under high levels of both chronic and episodic anxiety. This can begin to change only when one examines the origins, sources and triggers for his or her anxiety. This can lead to emotional maturity and less anger-reactivity. Until then, I recommend staying away from the “least mature.”

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