Sunday, August 23, 2009

Putting It Out There

We used to play spin the bottle when I was a kid," says comedy writer Gene Perret. "A girl would spin the bottle, and if the bottle pointed to you when it stopped, the girl could either kiss you or give you a nickel. By the time I was 14, I owned my own home."

Gotta admire persistence. Because rejection is hard to take. Especially when it comes from someone you know. Or, come to think about it, someone you don't know.

And we all want to be appreciated. We like being valued for what we do and who we are.

American football coach Bum Phillips lives in a world where one can become a hero or a heel in an amazingly short time. One mediocre season and a coach, even a good one, can be out of a job. Like Phillips once said, "There's only two kinds of coaches -- them that's been fired and them that's about to be fired." Sounds like they might want to make friends with rejection.

Few things hold people back more than the fear of rejection. They don't ask for what they need because the answer may be no. They don't ask their boss for a raise or for more time off. They don't ask for help. They are afraid to be the first to say "I love you" (what if they don't hear "I love you" back?). They don't ask for a better deal or a lower interest rate. They don't submit that manuscript to a publisher. In short, they don't let their wants and needs be known, for fear of being turned away, turned down or turned out.

But the wonderful truth is this: If you can accept NO for an answer, you can ask for anything. ANYTHING. When no is an acceptable and okay answer to what you'd like, you can fearlessly ask for whatever you need.

I love the expression, "I'm just putting it out there." Just put it out there. Ask. And don't worry about the response. Nobody can say YES if you never asked. Just put it out there and don't be afraid -- you may be surprised at the answer you get. Sometimes people just need to be asked. And if you don't get the response you want, are you any worse off than before?

Hey -- I'm just putting it out there.

-- Steve Goodier



Karen Chace said...

Hi Steve,

I loved this piece; we think along the same lines. My motto has always been, "If you don't ask, the answer is always 'No.' That mantra has helped me put the fear of rejection to rest more than once in my life.

Thanks for reminding me and for always adding a positive spin to my day!

Karen Chace
Professional Storyteller/Teaching Artist

Mai Nguyen said...

Thanks for ur post. "If you don't ask, the answer is always "No"!"=> I like it much!

Anonymous said...

Hi Steve,

Thanks for the great message today. I'd like to offer a different twist to your assertion " And if you don't get the response you want, are you any worse off than before?" I think even if you don't get the response you want, you're always better off than you were before. At least then you have an answer and can move forward in your life.

Thanks again for the great messages. They really make a positive difference for me!

Margaret said...

For the past few years my attitude has been, "I give people the opportunity to say No." After all, how often do regular folks get to say No?


Kathy Szaj said...

I've been getting your LSS e-letter for many years, Steve, and I still so appreciate your storied approach to the goodness of life. Thank you.

This post reminds me of a Fred Rogers story:

"When I was a boy and would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, 'Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.' To this day, especially in times of 'disaster,' I remember my mother's words, and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers--so many caring people in this world."

And look at the caring man he became....

All the best to you,

The Linking Verb
Inspiring Words That Create the Worlds We Want