YES Is the Destination, NO Is How You Get There

by Richard Fenton and Andrea Waltz


What happens when two professional speakers find themselves with too much time on their hands? After some serious brainstorming, we decided on our next big Go for No project: We decided to make a movie!

We're not talking about a big-budget Hollywood movie, or even a movie like The Secret. We decided to make a personal development, documentary-style video, starring 58 top performers in a variety of industries, sharing their thoughts, beliefs and strategies when it comes to hearing NO and dealing with failure and rejection.

We wanted to create an up-close-and-personal documentary that captured top performers in casual settings (for example, we interviewed Jack Canfield at his poolside office and top networkers Art Jonak and David Frey in David's living room.)

On May 13th, 2009, we loaded up our SUV with 6 small, hand-held cameras and spent the next 44 days driving nearly 12,000 miles—from Portland, Oregon to Portland, Maine; from Miami to Los Angeles, including 30 other major cities in between.

It turned into one of the most interesting projects we could ever have imagined. As the authors of the Go for No!® book and people who spend most of their time doing programs on the topic of overcoming failure and rejection, we went into this project already 'sold' on the subject. But we were still blown away by what we learned and by the nuggets of gold our interviewees had to share.

Here are a few Success Sound Bites and just a fraction of the fascinating lessons we'll be sharing during our upcoming Networking University webinar:

From Art Jonak on Why we don't like NO
From a very early age, we're programmed with "No" being negative. Is it negative? Hey, it's just the way we've been programmed, right? That's why so many adults are still afraid of rejection. And it's kind of sad.

From Jack Canfield on Asking
The problem is most people are afraid to ask. They're afraid they're going to get a "No," so they don't ask. I always say, "You don't know you're going to get a 'No' until you ask, and if you don't ask, you've given yourself the No."

From Richard Bliss Brooke on Responding to NO
When somebody says "No, I'm not interested," your response should be, "I'm closer!" Because you are.

From John Milton Fogg on Learning from NO
No's really teach you stuff. I'm not sure that yeses do. Yeses make you feel great, you got the result, but I think we probably learn more from the No's.

From Joel Weldon on Persistence
The prize is in direct proportion to the price: what comes easy is worth very little, what comes hard is worth so much. No's are so wonderful because they're making you so much better.

From Lisa Jimenez on Dealing with NO
Really, it's all about transforming our relationship to the word "No" and transforming our relationship to rejection. That it really is where we're making our money.

From Lethia Owens on Failure
You often hear, "Failure is not an option." Failure is an option. Not only is it an option, it should be expected, because there is no way to get from where you are to excellence, there is no way to get from where you are to success, without experiencing failure along the path.

From Margie Aliprandi on Advice she'd give a younger version of herself
I would remind myself as a young person that I was born for greatness; that I have a dream and a gift that no one else has and that I've got to go for it. I've got to go for it, and if that means going for No, then go for No.

What about you? When you hear the word NO, what does that mean to you? Do you let it slow you down? Do you let it stop you? Do you quit?

How you respond to NO may be the difference between success and failure for millions of people all over the planet—not age, not gender, not training, not skill, not the product or service nor the economy.

The word NO has destroyed more dreams than any other force on the planet. Yet it doesn't have to be that way. The stories in our movie, the lessons we learned on our journey and what we'll be sharing in our webinar prove it.


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