Getting the opportunity to write an article for my dream magazine, I was over the moon. The topic was something I was truly passionate about – the stories of some incredible people. I eagerly interviewed those involved, and they were just as excited about it.
However, my excitement came to an unexpected halt when I received an email from the editor stating that they wouldn't be running the story due to changes in the magazine's management. It felt like a dream being shattered right in the middle of living it. At first, I couldn't believe it. I fired off a reactive email, seeking explanations and looking for any possible solution, but the editor seemed uninterested.
For days, I kept obsessively checking my email, hoping for a different response. I even stalked the editor on social media and searched the internet for a way to fix things. I couldn't believe that I was denied the opportunity without any fault of mine. Somehow, I felt incompetent and lost my confidence. I couldn't bring myself to work that week. It took me a few days to realize what was happening. My mind was refusing to accept that the story wasn't going to happen. I was keeping myself away from the harsh reality. I just didn't want to come out of the dream.
With time, I comprehended that I was allowing a small setback to have a big impact on me. It was just one dream project but there are tonnes out there. Rejections are part and parcel of the writing business, and I shouldn't let them define me. Eventually, I gathered the courage to confront my reality by leaving my ego behind. I removed my hero image of the best writer who never saw any rejections. Instead, I saw that it was not about me, it was about the company taking a different direction, it was just wrong timing for me. Even if it was my fault, I should learn and rise up. I imagined a new plot for my hero identity, a hero that rises despite setbacks.
I'd always considered myself detached from my work, someone who could handle failure gracefully. But this incident was like a wake-up call. Looking back, I realize that strong emotions can initially put was off track. We learn to let go of the older reality with time. We should allow ourselves to moan in this initial phase without judging our capability. However, we must be cautious of dealing with it in the right way (without harming others or falling prey to addictions) and only for a limited time. It is important to be mindful of this lineancy else you will get entangled in the lifelong circle of ignorance and pain. After that initial phase of non-acceptance, we definitely acquire the much-needed perceptive to see the path ahead. Each failure adds that pinch of strength (if we don't allow it to pull us down). We should have the intention to come out.
To move forward, we must learn to accept things as they are, without judgment. Only then can we take the next step, which is facing the world. Only by overcoming the fear of facing our own self, we can overcome the fear of facing others. Find out more on this in the upcoming post!