Afraid of rejection

I know this is a fitness site, but let’s take a few moments to talk about rejection as it pertains to teaching group exercise.

When you audition for a class, you are showing up, and in essence competing for a teaching spot. Other people will be showing up, they will be displaying their skill sets and talents also competing for the same teaching spot.

When you show up to a class, whether new or old, you will stand on a stage, in front of 20 to 60 people, (sometimes more) displaying those very same skills and talents. When you are subbing for someone, or starting a new class, you are in essence auditioning yourself to the group. You are hoping that they like what you do, enjoy your class, and return.

Now in the first scenario, you must understand that there is only one spot, and about 20 of you competing for it. That means that at least 19 of you will not be selected for the spot. Okay? Does that mean you suck, or that you are no good? Or does it simply mean that the odds were highly stacked against you? Perhaps the manager liked the symmetry of someone’s face more? Perhaps that person reminds them of their cousin? Who knows? The point of this is that there are 1,001 reasons as to why they picked someone else, none of which has to be that you suck.

In the second scenario, you will have some people who think you are absolutely amazing. They will come over to you are the end of class, give you a hug, a handshake, thank you and tell you how your class is the best class in the whole world. Then, there will be some who will have a look of boredom and disinterest right from the start, they will then walk out at about 1/4 of the way through your class. Does that mean you suck, or perhaps that your style is not what they like? Maybe they are lazy and didn’t expect to actually have to work? Again, who knows? It’s not about you, it’s about them. Let them go, and carry on!

I recently auditioned for Zumba at one gym, I was approved by the immediate manager, she loved what I brought to the table! However, her manager has yet to approve me. Does that rejection, delay, indecision deter me? Absolutely not! I’d like to be acknowledged, but her acknowledgement does not validate me as an instructor. What validates me as an instructor are the smiling faces and screaming participants as they sing and dance their way to a healthier life. I teach Zumba at several gyms, and have covered classes all over the 5 boros, and they all love me, that’s good enough for me. I’d like to get in there, but it won’t make or break my career or spirit!

At another location, a Zumba slot opened up. I threw my name in the mix, and I feel that I am absolutely qualified, and best positioned to take this spot. In my mind, there shouldn’t even be a thought process, the minute I expressed interest, the slot should have been assigned to me. That’s how I feel about it. However, the managers may feel differently, and that’s fine. There are instructors who have seniority over me, that have been doing this longer and are far better at it than I am. However, I don’t let that keep me from trying, and believing that I’m great for the job, even if I’m not the best one for it.

Rejection sucks, none of us like it. However, without trying, you’ll never achieve or gain anything in life. So when it comes to making the decision to try and get rejected, or not trying at all, and not getting anything, I’ll take my chances with trying and failing. You have a 50% chance of success by trying. You have a 100% chance of not failing by not trying, but you are also guaranteed 100% to not succeed. That’s the bottom line to all of this, if you try, you may succeed. If you don’t try, I guarantee you will never succeed!

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