What I learned from 100 days of rejection | Jia Jiang

when I was six year old I received my gift my first-grade teacher had this brilliant idea she wanted us to experience receiving gifts but also learning the virtue of complementing each other so she had all of us come to the front of the classroom and she bought all of his gifts and stacked them in the corner and she said why don’t we just stand here and compliment each other if you hear your name called go and pick up your gifts and sit down what a wonderful idea right what could go wrong well there were 40 of us to start with and every time when I hear someone’s name called I would give out the hardiest cheer and then there were 20 people left and ten people left and five left and three left that was one of them and the compliment stopped well at that moment I was crying and the teacher was freaking out and she was like hey would anyone see anything nice about these people no one okay why don’t you go get your gift and sit down so behaved next year someone might say something nice about you well as I’m describing this to you you probably know I remember this really well but I don’t know who felt worse that day was that me or the teacher she must realize that she turned a team-building event into a public roast for three six-year-olds and without a humor you know when you see people get roasted on TV it was funny there was nothing funny about that day so that that was one version of me and I would die to avoid being in that situation again to get rejected in public again that’s one version that fast forward eight years um Bill Gates came to my hometown Beijing China to speak and I saw his message I love I thought you’d help with that guy I thought wow I know what I want to do now that night I wrote a letter to my family telling them by age 25 I would be the biggest company in the world and that company will buy Microsoft I totally embrace this idea of conquering the world domination right and I didn’t know I didn’t make this up I did write that letter and hear this um no but you don’t have to read this through and this is also bad handwriting but I did highlight some key words um you get the idea so that was another version of me wanted to conquer the world well then two years later I was presented with the opportunity to come to the United States I jumped on it and because that was where Bill Gates lived right I thought that was the start of my entrepreneur journey then fast forward another 14 years I was 30 nope I didn’t build that company I didn’t even start I was actually a marketing manager for a fortune 500 company and I fell I was stuck I was stagnant why is that where’s that 14 year old who load that letter it’s not because he didn’t try it’s because every time I want had a new idea every time I want to try something new even at work I wanted to make a proposal I wanted to speak up in front of people in a group I felt there was this constant battle between the 14 year old and a six year old one wanted to conquer the world make a difference another was afraid of rejection and every time that six year old one and this fear even persisted after I started my own company I mean I started my own company what was 30 if you want to be Bill Gates he got start sooner or later right when I was a entrepreneur I was presented with the investment opportunity and then I was turned down and that rejection hurt me it hurt me so bad that I wanted to quit right there but then I thought hey would Bill Gates quit after a simple investment rejection with any successful entrepreneur quit like that no way and this is where he clicked for me okay I can build a better company I can build a better team or better product but one thing for sure I could be a better leader I could be a better person I cannot let that six-year-old keep dictating my life anymore I have to put him back to his place so this is where I went online look for help Google was my friend I searched how do I overcome the fear of rejection akima was a bunch of psychology articles about where the fear and pain are coming from and then I came up with bunch of Rara inspirational article is about don’t take it personally just overcome it who doesn’t know that but why was I still so scared then I found this website by luck is called rejection therapy calm rejection therapy was this game invented by this Canadian entrepreneur his name is Jason Connelly and it’s basically idea is for 30 days you go out and look for rejection and everyday get rejected at something and by the end you desensitize yourself from the pain and I love that idea I I said you know what I’m gonna do this and I’ll film myself getting rejected hundred days and I came up with my own rejection ideas and I’ll make a video blog out of it and so here’s what I did this is what the blog looked like on day one for $100 from $400 from stranger so this is where I went to where I was working I came downstairs I saw this big guy sitting behind a desk you know he looked like a security guard so I just approached him and I was going I was just walking and that was the longest walk in my life I just hair the back of my neck standing up I was sweating the my heart was pounding and I got there and said hey sir can I borrow $100 from you and he looked up he’s like no why and I just said I said no I’m sorry then I turn around there just ran I felt so embarrassed but because I filmed myself so that night I was watching myself getting rejected and just saw how scared I was I look like this kid in sixth sense I saw dead people but then I saw this guy he you know he he wasn’t that menacing he was trouble of above guy you know and that and he even asked me why in fact he invited me to explain myself I could have said many things I could have explained I couldn’t negotiated I didn’t do any of that all I did was run I felt wow this is like a microcosm of my life every time I feel the slightest rejection I was just running as fast as I could and you know what the next day no matter what happens I’m not gonna run I’ll stay engaged day to request a burger refill is where I finished I went to a burger joint a finished lunch and I went to the cashier and said I can’t get a burger Phil he was so confused so like what’s a burglary fail I said well just like a drink review but was the burger and he said sorry we don’t do a burger refill man so this is a word rejection happened I could have run but I stayed I said well I love your burger love your your joint and a few guys doober career field I would love you guys more and he said well okay I’ll tell my manager about it but maybe we’ll do it but sorry we can’t do this today then I left and by the way I don’t think the upper dumb burger refill I think they are still there um but the life-and-death feeling I was feeling the first time was no longer there just because I stay engaged because I didn’t run I said wow great I’m already learning things great and then day three getting Olympic doughnuts um this is where my life was turned upside down I went to a Krispy Kreme donut shop in mainly in the southeastern part of the United States I’m sure they have some here too and I went in I said can you make me donuts that look like Olympic symbols basically you interlink five doughnuts together I mean there’s no way they could say yes right the doughnut maker took me so seriously so she put out paper start jotting down the colors and rings it’s like how could he make this and then 15 minutes later she came up with a box that looks like all the big rings and I was so touched and I I just couldn’t believe it and that video got over 5 million views on YouTube the world couldn’t believe that either and you know because of that I was on in newspapers and talk shows and everything and I became famous a lot of people started writing emails to me and saying what you’re what you’re doing is awesome but you know Fame and notoriety did not do anything to me what I really want to do is learn and to change myself so I turned the rest of my 100 days rejection into this playground into this research project I wanted to learn what see what I can learn and then I learned a lot of things I discovered so many secrets for example I found if I just don’t run if I got rejected I could actually turn knowing to yes and the magic word is why so one day I went to a stranger’s hell that is flowering my hand and I said knock on door I said hey can I plant this flower in your backyard and and he said no but before he could leave I said a canal candle why and he said well I have this dog him that would dig up anything I put in the backyard I don’t waste your flower if I don’t do this go cross street and talk to Connie she loves flowers so that’s what I did I went across and knock on Connie’s door and she was so happy to see me and then half an hour later there’s this flowering Connie’s backer I’m sure it looks better now but had it had that left after the initial rejection I would have thought well it’s because the guy didn’t trust me is because I was crazy because I need dress-up or I didn’t look good it was none of those it was because what I offered did not fit what he wanted and he trusted me enough to offer me a referral using sales term I converted a referral then one day I also learned that I can actually see certain things and maximize my chance to get a yes so for example I one day I went to a Starbucks and asked the manager hey can I be a Starbucks greeter it’s like what’s a Starbucks greeter I said do you know those Walmart greeters you know this that’s people who say hi to you before you walk in the store and make sure you don’t steal stuff basically and I want to give the warmer experience to Starbucks customers um well I’m not sure that’s a good thing actually I’m actually a pretty sure it’s a bad thing um and he was like oh oh yeah this is how you looked his name is Erica he’s like I’m not sure this how he he was hearing me not sure then ask him is that weird he’s like yeah that’s really weird man but as soon as he said that his whole demeanor change it’s as if he’s putting all the doubt on the floor and he said yeah you can do this and just don’t get too weird so so for the next hour I was the Starbucks greeter I said hi for every customer that walked in and give him how do the cheers uh by the way I don’t know what your career trajectory is don’t be a grater yes it was really boring um but then I found I could do this because I mentioned is that weird I mentioned a doubt that he was having and because I mentioned is that weird that means I wasn’t weird that means I was actually thinking just like him seeing this as the weird thing and again again I learned that if I mention some doubt people might have before I ask the question people are getting their trust people will more likely to say yes to me and then I learned I could fulfill my life dream like asking you know I came from a four generations of teachers and my grandma has always told me hey Johnny can do anything you want but you’d be great if you become a teacher but I want to be entrepreneurs so I didn’t but it has always been my dream to actually teach something so I said what if I just ask and teach a college class so I live in Austin at the time so I went to University of Texas in Austin knock on professor’s doors and so it kind of teach your class um I didn’t get anywhere the first tuck a couple times but because I didn’t run I kept doing it and on the third try the professor was very impressed it’s like no one has done this before and I came in prepared with the powerpoints and and my lesson is that well I can use this well when you come back in two months I’ll fit you in my curriculum and two months later I was teaching a class this is me you probably can see this is bad picture um you know sometimes you get rejected by lighting you know but well when I finished teaching that class I walk out a-crying because I thought I could just fulfill my life dream just by simply asking I thought I used to think I have to accomplish all these things have to be a great entrepreneur or or learner get a PhD to teach but no I just asked and as could teach and in that picture of which you can see I coded Martin Luther King jr. why because in my research I found the people who really change the world who change the way we live and with the way we think are the people who were met with the initial and often violent rejections people like Martin Luther King jr. like Muhammad Gandhi Nelson Mandela or even Jesus Christ these people did not let rejection define them they let their only reaction after rejection define themselves and they embrace rejection and we don’t have to be those people to learn about rejection and in my case rejection was my curse was my boogeyman it has bothered me my whole life because I was running away from it then I started embracing that I turned that into the biggest gift in my life I started I started teaching people how to return rejections into opportunities I use my blog I used my talk I used the book I just published and the I was even even using technology to help people overcome their fear rejection when you get rejected in life when you are making facing the next obstacle or next failure consider the possibilities don’t run if you just embrace them they might become your gift as well thank you


  1. Getting over rejection and going through that is a growing process, but, nowadays, with #MeToo, it’s not worth the legal risk to face that kind of rejection.

  2. one time I was out eating with a friend and the server asked if we wanted dessert and I said "sure, if it's free" and then he just said "hmm okay sure" and he brought us free desserts XD

  3. Your video helped me feel better for Andrew Yang being rejected by MSM. Thank you.

  4. Got 100 rejections so far looking for jobs as simple as whipping the floor walking 100km a week…. Smiley, presentable, polite, educated and ambitious in my own country.

  5. Did the 717 people who "rejected" this video do it to help him learn more? Sorry Jia Jiang, I liked it! You won't learn from me

  6. I will remember this when I get brave enough to ask this lady I am very close to if I can call her my mom.
    Just writing that terrified me.

  7. Grasshopper I was rejected for 12 years by the same woman, nothing weird, super friendly and nice but she just liked taller and richer dudes. You know what is my conclusion and the lesson? The beer is better than any woman you will ever meet.

  8. I needed to hear this video today! My favorite takeaway: My reaction after rejection defines who I am~~ Next time I'm going to ask "why?"

  9. If you choose lofty goals like conquering the world you'd better be prepared for obstacles and dealing with rejection. It's not an easy road to the top (unless you were born with a silver spoon in your mouth).

  10. Great talk! I've read a book that covers basically the same the thing about getting 'no' first and then asking why to get what you want. It's called 'Never Split the Difference' by Chris Voss.

  11. My friend introduced me to the most beautiful girl I’ve ever met at a concert…. not only her looks but her personality … I could tell she liked me very quickly(she grabbed my hand and pulled me into the crowd) and just gave a flirty vibe I guess.

    So after 5 minutes I convinced my friend to come to the bathroom with me and get a drink(I got nervous and was scared she would reject me, mostly thinking of the outcomes and not being present)

    I didn’t know it would be the last time I would ever see her… We couldn’t find them afterwords .. i was on vacation in Athens, Greece and my friend had just met the two of them….

    I can’t explain the feeling I got that night and the days following….

    I just want to be present and free. I love people and life but I cannot seem to break out of my own mind.

  12. He should've done this with women he tried to pick up, so everytime vê for rejeites, he asked "why?" he would learn about a new lie everytime

  13. I lost count on how many opportunities I missed, just due to fear of rejection. I always understood the concept of missing 100% of shots you don't take but for some reason, I often just don't take that first step.

  14. I love this talk. So many people need to learn this lesson. To find success you have to learn to appreciate rejection. Some of us are so scarred by the teasing and humiliation we experience in our youth that we let it define the rest of our lives. If you’re reading this, don’t do that! You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take. It’s not just a cheesy saying. It’s the truth. Follow the advice in this video.

  15. We all are siners,but God so loved the world that He gave His only son Jesus Christ ,that whoever believe in Him should not perish ,but have everlasting life
    Jesus Christ willingly died on cross,had burried,and raise from dead after 3 days,to we can live forever together with Him, He loves us

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