So much has changed in the wonderful land of SEO in the past few years. Remember those days when the top ten results in Google consisted of sites filled with spun articles or even malware? I guess a few of you will miss those days; others will thank the almighty one, that is Matt Cutts, for freeing the Web from such rubbish. Whichever way you feel about the deal, know that whatever used to work three years ago no longer does the job. Today most SEO experts are putting emphasis on quality: original content, relevant topics, perfect grammar and studio quality videos. The demand for state of the art products, whether visual or written, has increased exponentially. Getting paid for an article or getting a link in exchange for one is not as easy as it used to be. A blogger could get away with poor English and a mediocre style in the recent past. That is no longer so. Even if you are publishing articles exclusively on your blog, you still have the judgment of your own readers to care about. With quality standards being set so high, getting your work rejected isn’t uncommon. Whether that rejection comes from other bloggers whom you want to guest blog for, or it manifests itself between the lines of the comments that your own readers leave on your site, dealing with it can be hard. When one takes pride in the work which he or she does, hearing from another human being that their work is not worth a dime is even more discouraging. If you get rejected, there is one thing which you have to keep in mind: Rejection is an event, not a status that defines you. What separates winners from losers is not lack of rejection by the former; it is the way they deal with rejection. A successful writer or entrepreneur takes rejection as an opportunity to grow. Quitters internalize rejection, and transform it into an obstacle that prevents them from achieving their goals. A better understanding of what rejection is and what it’s not will help you deal with it in a positive way, and use rejection as a means to grow as a blogger, writer and human being too.
What Rejection Really Is
Rejection As An Opportunity To Improve Communication Skills
If you have enjoyed reading any of my other inbound-marketing articles, you already know that I love studying many concepts by envisioning them as a spectrum. Let us focus on writing skills for the time being. On one end of this spectrum of skills — the black one in my example below, we have William Shakespeare; on the white end, we have a four-year-old kid who has just learned the alphabet. Here is what I have in mind:
I have placed my writing skills at about sixty percent, with hundred being perfection. Where would you place yourself in this spectrum? If your articles get continuously rejected, there are two possibilities: You are either submitting them to editors who expect much higher standards than the ones you have, or you have been too generous in assessing your writing skills. Whatever the case is, there are a couple of ways you can deal with it. You can submit your low-quality articles to editors or publishers who don’t expect much from them. To a blogger, that means submitting to PR0 blogs, engaging in paid guest blogging or outsourcing the content. To a writer, it means resorting to self-publishing on Kindle or a similar platform. You can also submit your badly written articles to the Times of Malta, as they have no issue publishing trash and even selling it on their Web site as premium content. However this approach will not take you anywhere. If you are submitting your articles to those who expect a quality of seventy five percent from the above spectrum and you are writing articles at a fifty percent level, the correct solution is to improve the quality of your articles to meet expectations. Use each rejection you receive as an opportunity by asking politely those who rejected your work why they did it. In this way you can get valuable feedback. As a writer, being humble always pays. Treasure any criticism received. Some of it will be deserved; some will be based purely on tastes. Don’t let your pride dismiss a negative assessment of your work. Try to evaluate each critique objectively and make the most out of it to work towards improving your writing skills. A great resource I have recently started to use to improve my grammar is this Web site. It is helping me a lot with my grammar and I feel that I made a significant improvement since I began blogging. There’s no reason why you cannot do the same too. However sometimes improving your writing skills is not enough to get your articles published. Even if you are able to write spot-on, grammatically-perfect English, the way you communicate your ideas to your readers may not be making a good impression on editors. Again, asking for feedback is your best bet towards getting approved next time. If the editors refuse to provide constructive criticism, check out the other articles they are publishing on their sites. Compare the style of your articles to them, and see if you can somehow mimic it. Improving your writing skills and your overall communication is not as tough as you may think. Unless you’re William Shakespeare himself, you can always improve, no matter what your current skills are. Rejection provides an incredible opportunity for growth.
Rejection As An Exercise To Connect More With People
Some people find it hard to connect with other human beings. Sadly I fall into this category. I am often amazed to hear that so many people want to see fake income reports, false earning promises, colored arrows and fancy graphics before purchasing a product. They seem to be more interested in a classical recipe of nonsense, served together with a dish of lies and a big fake smile as a desert, rather than a plate of truth and a glass of authenticity. Whether you want write as a blogger or as a professional writer, you need to give your readers what they want. That applies to cases when you feel that they don’t know what they’re doing too. Your English is excellent and you’re communicating your message to your audience in a clear, concise way, but your writings still get rejected. That likely means that the issue is the subject of your articles. In other words, are you writing about topics that your editors or readers want to hear about, and from a perspective that will make your articles appealing to them? As an author, for me it is very hard to do this; much harder in fact then improving my style. I take writing articles somewhat like an artist takes painting a portrait. I want to put my own vibe into it, deliver my own thoughts on paper and express my point of view. But the truth is people do not care about what I think. When writing for blogs, know that other webmasters, as well as casual readers, want information, not an opinion. Unless you are a famous personality, and that includes being a YouTube star too, no one cares about what you think. Rejection can help you determine which topics your readers want to hear about. Sometimes we ask an editor why he rejected an article we have submitted. ‘There’s nothing wrong with the article. It’s just the topic that I don’t feel is appropriate for my blog,’ he may answer. If that happens, either the editor felt uneasy about pointing to you all those spelling and grammar mistakes in your article, or you may be writing about topics no one is interested in. Have a look at the person’s blog and check carefully the kind of topics he publishes. Try to write about a similar topic. There is nothing wrong in putting your vibe into your articles as long as your primary focus is giving the readers what they want.
Rejection Is An Unavoidable Stage On The Path Towards Success
The big bloggers in today’s Internet scene write, time after time, about the success they are having online. They never tell about their failures. Why? Is that because they have never failed? Not at all, the reason is that they have learned, with time and experience, to give their readers exactly what they want. ‘Failure,’ just like ‘rejection,’ is a word that most of the readers of blogs similar to mine do not want to hear. But the truth is that both failure and rejection are stages that must be experienced before getting to success. I love to use the similitude of a video game to explain this concept. Hopefully you have all played a video game at some stage in your lives. Well, you will know then that the typical game has you travel from point A to point B, overcoming a series of obstacles to get to your goal. If the game is a good challenge, one that is worth playing, it will take you several attempts to reach the final goal. You will lose many ‘lives,’ before you manage to learn how to solve certain puzzles, avoid obstacles and defeat enemies. The same goes to article writing. Before you are able to impress your editors and readers with your superb skills, you have to make mistakes. It is totally irrelevant if you are an average person or a genius. Albert Einstein got rejected because he was unable to explain his theories in a way his contemporaries could understand. Dozens of Michelangelo’s paintings were rejected because many deemed them inappropriate. They both had to wait and learn new skills in order to deliver their message in a way others would enjoy it. It doesn’t matter who you are and how skilled you are, rejection is something that cannot be avoided. The only way to do that is to not try at all. By taking that path, we can be sure our work is never rejected, but also that we’ll never be successful.
What Rejection is NOT
Rejection Is NOT An Intrinsic Trait That Defines You
Many folks internalize rejection and make it a character trait for themselves, rather than what it really is: an external event. Going back to the video game example — when we get killed in a game, it’s a matter of pushing a button and starting over. In theory the same should be true when an article we write gets rejected; in practice psychological factors come into play, and it is not as easy as that. Rejection, unlike the video game, involves another human being telling us that we aren’t fit for a given task. Many, especially those who had a troubled childhood, feel very uncomfortable about being rejected, as they tend to associate the new experience with older ones of being rejected by parents, teachers or peers. This happens at an unconscious level and hence rational thinking is often not enough to set us back on track. The truth is that rejection is an external event. It is possible that the editor who rejected the article might not have even read it. He may just be afraid that he will get into trouble with Google if he keeps publishing guest posts on his blog, and so he made it a point to reject all submissions made to him. If there is a valid reason for the rejection, any shortcomings in the article can be fixed when you invest some time on your education as a writer. The point is this: the shortcomings are with the article, not within yourself. A rejected article does not imply that you are a bad author. Think about the analogy with the video game. If you get killed by some monster when jumping off a platform, it does not mean you are a poor player; it just means that the jump was not done correctly. It is really as easy as that. Skills can be learned and specific issues with your style can be fixed. Don’t let the way your mind is wired make you feel that rejection is part of your own person because it is not.
Rejection Is Not Something You Are Expected To Be Happy About
Rejection always provides an opportunity to enhance our skills, improve ourselves as writers and help us work towards our success as bloggers. But it is not an event that we should expect ourselves to be happy about. There is a psychological reason for this, that I briefly touched upon in the last paragraph. When your article gets rejected it is perfectly normal to feel hurt, angry, sad and even depressed. Other than working towards improving our writing for a better chance of being approved next time, it is very important to take care of these emotions. Denial is not a solution. Instead, try to talk about it with a friend. Preferably this has to be a person who understands you and supports you. ‘Buddy, who cares what they think? I am sure that your article was amazing. These bloggers are full of ****; forget about them and go back to flipping burgers!‘ That’s the response of someone who doesn’t understand the issue at all. Your friend may be genuinely trying to help you out, but the truth is that he or she is simply flipping reality upside down by implying that the article is fine and you are wrong. The article is what needs to be changed not you being a blogger or an author. The best way to get support is to join a writer’s forum, and make some friends over there. You will get both shoulders to cry on and valuable feedback. Meditation and physical exercise can also help out a lot. To summarize, it is perfectly fine to feel upset after a rejection. It is equally important to take full of advantage of all of them in order to make further progress.
A rejection is not an obstacle to your success. The difference between a successful author and a quitter is not in the number of rejections they receive, nor in their ratios to approvals. Rejection is an event experienced by everyone; success is an attitude only a few possess. This cannot be repeated enough: The way winners react to rejections is what separates them from losers. Accept every rejection as a challenge and an opportunity to improve your skills. It may or may not take a long time, but if you approach rejection the right way, it will eventually turn into approval.