How Rejection has Made Me a Better Blogger

How rejection has made me a better blogger

Today in my Mastermind group, I was explaining that I want to reach out to other bloggers and collaborate with them, but I was feeling weird about it. (For some reason, I sometimes feel like I’m in middle school again, where I was most definitely not one of the popular kids.)

My friend Kerstin told me about this project called 100 Rejection Letters, where she gives herself a gold star every time she gets rejected. She suggested that I look into it.

While I think the whole 100 Rejection Letters idea is BRILLIANT, I realized that I don’t actually need a gold star every time I’m rejected.

Being a blogger and solopreneur for the past 4 years has given me loads of practice with rejection.

Last week, I started an email sequence to let my readers know that I’m closing my membership site, Have Your Cupcake, to new members. (It closes tonight.)

The first time I launched Have Your Cupcake, back in August of 2015, I felt intense anxiety. What if people didn’t sign up? What if the whole thing was a flop? The entire time I was launching it, I felt like my self-worth was on the line.

But this time, I feel proud.

I feel proud of putting something out there – something that I’ve put my heart and soul into – and asking people to pay me for it. Even if no one signed up during the launch (which many people have), I would feel really good about it anyway.

Because by doing a “real launch” and selling Have Your Cupcake, I am telling myself that I am worth it. That I care more about going after what I want than I do about what other people think of me.

Being a blogger has helped me be okay with rejection. More than that, it’s helped me embrace it.

Because in order to succeed online, you have to be willing to be rejected by 99.9% of people.

You have to be willing to put yourself out there and write blog posts that may never be read by anyone other than your mom.

You have to hope that readers will agree to part with their email addresses in exchange for something that you’ve spent hours creating. (While knowing that most people who visit your blog won’t sign up.)

And once you have an email list, you have to have the guts to email a bunch of people who don’t know you. And you have to be okay with it when only 30% of them open your email and even less actually click through to read your posts.

But here’s the thing. Getting rejected by billions of people everyday is actually helpful. Because just as loads of people are opting out of your offerings, your people are finding you and loving what they see.

And here’s the other thing. You have to face rejection if you want to build something that matters to you.

Because the more you put yourself out there for the sake of YOU and what you really care about, rejection be damned, the stronger you become. And the more worthy you feel.

The more you face rejection head on and keep going, the more worthy you feel. #bloggingClick To Tweet

Here are 6 things that scared the shit out of me when I first started blogging that I now do without worrying:

1. Writing a blog post and sharing it on social media.

I used to be afraid that I would be annoying people. Now I love sharing my stuff because I know that it helps people.

2. Emailing my subscribers.

I used to be afraid that people would unsubscribe. Now I embrace unsubscribes because they only leave truly interested people on my email list, AND they also lower my Convertkit costs.

3. Selling things.

It took me months to work up the courage to sell something, and when I did, I felt guilty about it. Now I love selling things, because it gives people a chance to get my best stuff, and it gives me a chance to experiment with different ways to sell.

4. Doing video.

I used to avoid video like the plague. I didn’t want to be seen as the makeup-less, yoga pants wearing woman I am. Now I love video because it helps people see me in all of my imperfect glory.

5. Acting like I know what I’m talking about.

I used to think, Who am I to pretend I know what I talk about? Why would anyone think I’m an expert? Now I know that I am really, really good at helping people find their voice and putting the pieces of the online marketing puzzle together. As long as I stick with that, I feel good.

6. Being a blogger in general.

I used to feel weird about telling people I’m a blogger or a blogging coach. A lot of people think blogging isn’t a legit way to make money or live your life. Now I feel proud to be a blogger. I get to wear the aforementioned yoga pants every single day and still make an income.

Do I still fear rejection? Hell, yeah. I’m human.

(Remember the beginning of this post, when I was worried about reaching out to other bloggers? Yeah, that.)

But I’ve had so much practice with rejection as a blogger that I’m actually excited to push through and get out of my comfort zone again.

How rejection has made me a better blogger

So…what does all of this mean for you?

It means that every rejection brings you closer to the people you were meant to serve.

It means that you need to know your deeper purpose for blogging, so that when things get scary, you can come back to that purpose and remember why you started blogging in the first place.

It means that if you’re a blogger, you are courageous.

Because you’re willing to share yourself with the world despite how much it frightens you, and how much rejection you face.

So keep going. I’m rooting for you.

  • G2W

    I’m so glad you took the risk and created Have Your Cupcake!! It has truly enriched my life—– Thank you Daniela!

    • Daniela Uslan

      Thanks Gigi! I am so glad you are in the group!

  • Hi Daniela,

    I found your post on Triberr. I was curious to find out what you’ve learned as a blogger. I have to say I learned the exact same thing and I still get stuck with a couple of these…doing video is at the top of my list. 🙂

    Thank you for sharing such a motivating post. I’m sure there’s a lot of bloggers who can relate. Hope you’re having a great week!

    Cori

    • Daniela Uslan

      Thanks Cori, I really appreciate that. I am glad you found me on Triberr and resonated with my story. Video is definitely a challenge…but as @EliseCohenHo:disqus mentioned above, the magic happens just outside our comfort zones!

  • Kaitlyn Alory

    Personally, I think your Have Your Cupcake was the absolute best thing that could have happened to me at the time. The friendship we created in Blogging on Your Own terms resonates with me every time I open my blog window. I can’t wait to see where the future takes you.

    • Daniela Uslan

      Thanks so much, Kaitlyn! I am so glad you are a part of Have Your Cupcake!

  • Amanda Marie

    I needed this! I was rejected by 3 blogs for guests posts, my first 3 attempts ever! A great reminder to keep pushing!

    • Daniela Uslan

      Thanks Amanda! Keep going! You’ll be accepted when the time is right.

  • Video still scares the socks off of me, but I have learned over time (and through rejection!) that it’s okay to do all the rest unapologetically. I’m thankful for what rejection has taught me. And one day I’m sure videos will be on my list too.

    • Daniela Uslan

      Maria, so true. Be unapologetic about your blog. I love that you used that word!

  • Motherly Adventures

    What a great post! As a new blogger (one whole month!), I can relate to all the points you’ve mentioned. It feels like we’re sometimes writing just for ourselves because not many people read our posts. But as in any business, perseverance is key to suceed. Good job and congrats!

    • Daniela Uslan

      Thanks so much! Welcome to the blogging world, and congrats on your new blog!

  • Renee L Stambaugh

    Putting ourselves out there, so to speak, is the most scary thing..and the most rewarding…you always inspire me..

    • Daniela Uslan

      So true, Renee! I’m glad I can inspire you.

  • Great article! I have to say, that in a way I became blogger BECAUSE of rejections – one day I just sat there thinking I don’t want to hear “no” again while applying for a job. Or even worse – to not hear anything at all in response. I’ve decided that it’s time for me to get serious about building my brand in order to have my own business later. I’m a freelancer, I do it for years now, but I never really advertised my stuff. Why? Because I had this stupid fear of exposure and possible rejections. This year I said “enough” and started blogging 🙂 I believe I can make it!

    • Daniela Uslan

      Katarzyna, thanks for this perspective. I ended up working for myself for the same reason – because I couldn’t get a job. Ironically, being your own boss means putting yourself out there constantly, but I think it’s totally worth it. I think lots of people avoid selling their stuff because they’re afraid of rejection, and it’s great to hear you are moving past that.

  • Heather Milner

    Oh my goodness! This very thing has been haunting me lately!! I’ve swallowed my fear, jumped in, and BOOM, denied. Ugh. Thank you for the great pep talk.

    • Daniela Uslan

      No problem, Heather! Keep going!

  • Roy Miller

    Very nice article, Daniela. I think we can all relate to your story. At least you had the courage to keep going. That is what sets you ahead of a lot of people. A long time ago, someone told me to look at it this way: “Remember, that every no gets you closer to a yes.”

    • Daniela Uslan

      Thanks, Roy! That’s so true – having the courage to keep going is the key to succeeding at pretty much anything. Thanks for articulating that so well.

  • It’s reassuring to hear you sometimes doubt yourself and feel uncomfortable. Feeling like the uncool kid is rough! Thanks for all you do for us in Have Your Cupcake. You make a difference.

    • Daniela Uslan

      Thanks, Robin! I’m so glad you’re in my blogging world.

  • Femy Praseeth

    Thanks for inspiring beginners like me. The first time I shared my post in the group, I was no nervous. I still am but its getting better. Thanks for the constant motivation.

    • Daniela Uslan

      I’m glad it’s getting better, Femy, and it’s great having you in the community!

  • Yeah! There is always something to learn from all of our experiences 🙂

    • Daniela Uslan

      Thanks for your comment, Sagan! I appreciate it.

  • This was such a great post to read. I love your style, both in the writing and the execution. I do believe that everyone’s true magic is just outside of their own personal comfort zone and that incudes having to hear “no” sometimes.

    • Daniela Uslan

      Thanks Elise! I really appreciate that. I love how you put that – everyone’s true magic is just outside their comfort zone. YES!

  • Kaara De Freitas-Kiddoe

    This is an awesome post written just for me!!! I struggle with exactly all you mention and its great to see how you have evolved!

  • Oh hell yeah Daniela… Oh my goodness, where do I even begin.

    When I first came online my thought process was that everyone is so much younger than me and were practically born with a computer in their hands. It seemed to have taken me forever to learn everything that I have up to this point but every single step of the way was almost painful for me. I was scared to death, I thought people would think I was stupid or why would they listen to me. It took me a long time to get past all of those thoughts.

    I still to this day don’t have as much confidence as I should in a lot of areas and I’m not really sure why. Everyone I’ve worked with and even have spoken to are shocked that I feel this way but I think the issue is that for me, I don’t see myself the way other people see me. That’s something I still have to work through although I know a ton of great stuff and I’ve helped a heck of a lot of people. I just love doing that but it’s been a scary process along the way.

    I still hate to ask for a sale but I do it anyway because I know that what I put out there is damn good. (((wink wink)))

    So yeppers, I’m right there with ya girl but I know that you’re awesome because I’ve been following you for some time too. We all just have to get over it and get going right!

    Thanks for being so vulnerable and I know you’re helped others by sharing this too. Great job Daniela.

    ~Adrienne

    • Daniela Uslan

      Thanks for your honest, vulnerable, and thoughtful comment, Adrienne! I

      think that so many of us don’t see ourselves the way others do. Even though you’ve built up a successful blog and online platform, with lots of people telling you how truly awesome you are (which you are, btw), you still see yourself the way you always have. So even though the outside has changed, it takes awhile for the inside to catch up. (At least that’s been my experience.)

      As @disqus_q7XgDrzFeF:disqus wrote below, though, we both keep going despite those feelings of inadequacy. That is why we’ve both been able to succeed at this crazy online business thing! Thanks again for stopping by, and I hope you have a wonderful day!

      Daniela

  • orana velarde

    I had the privilege of living this with you and it has also been a learning experience for me! Thanks so much for being so honest about all this stuff!

    • Daniela Uslan

      I’m lucky to have you as my friend and VA, Orana! Thanks for your comment!