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February 07, 2024

Why Fear Holds You Back

As salespeople, we walk a tightrope between confidence and vulnerability. We put ourselves out there, building connections and presenting solutions, only to face the possibility of rejection at every turn. It's enough to make anyone crumble, especially those with a tendency towards self-criticism. But fear not, fellow sales warriors! This post is your guide to identifying and overcoming the inner critic that amplifies rejection and hinders your success.

The Price of Negativity. Continually running yourself down is a recipe for stagnation. It saps your motivation, fuels anxiety, and makes it harder to maintain the positive attitude crucial for building rapport and closing deals. Even worse, it can become a self-fulfilling prophecy, leading to the very rejection you fear.

Let's face it, rejection hurts. But understanding the root of this sensitivity can empower you to conquer it. Recognizing it as a form of fear allows us to explore its different manifestations:

  • Fear of Not Being Liked: We've all encountered the people-pleaser, desperate for approval and sacrificing negotiation leverage in the process. When rejection hits, they equate it with personal dislike, leading to doubt and discouragement.

  • Fear of Failure: The ambitious salesperson who hesitates under pressure, paralyzed by unrealistic expectations of success. This fear can manifest in various ways, from avoiding presentations to abandoning promising leads at the first sign of resistance.

  • Fear of Humiliation: Every "no" feels like a personal attack, often stemming from past experiences. This fear can lead to excuses, missed opportunities, and a constant sense of inadequacy.


Now, let's equip you with the tools to silence your inner critic and embrace rejection as a stepping stone to success:

  • Reframe Rejection: View it as feedback, not failure. Each "no" brings you closer to a "yes" by highlighting what didn't resonate and allowing you to refine your approach.

  • Focus on Activity, Not Outcome: Set daily goals for outreach and engagement, celebrating each connection made and conversation had. This shifts the focus from the uncontrollable outcome to the controllable actions.

  • Develop a Growth Mindset: Embrace challenges as opportunities to learn and improve. View setbacks as temporary roadblocks, not permanent road closures.

  • Practice Self-Compassion: Treat yourself with the same kindness and understanding you offer others. Acknowledge your feelings, but don't let them define you.

  • Seek Support: Talk to a mentor, coach, or trusted colleague. Sharing your struggles and gaining insights can be incredibly empowering.


Remember, rejection is inevitable in sales. But by understanding its root causes and developing a resilient mindset, you can transform it from a stumbling block into a stepping stone on your path to success.