Over the past few months, I have been rejected from a couple opportunities for which I thought I was the most qualified. It hurts. But it also reminds me that one can never rest on one’s laurels; one can never rest on what he did yesterday, but what she will do tomorrow. I have something to prove.
But what hurts is to not be given the opportunity to show my stuff. I am brash enough to claim that with applied effort I can do anything that falls in my core strengths. I may not always be the smartest person in the room, but so long as I’m in the general neighborhood IQ-wise, I can and will outwork, out-hustle, and out-passion anyone else. I used to place a big emphasis on smarts, but now I realize that everyone I’m interacting with in the real-world is smart. Being smart doesn’t get you very far. It’s all those other “soft” qualities.
I take these rejections as a wake up call. Adam Sandler’s line rings in my head: “You fuck with me, you get fucked with.” Even louder, the line we heard so often in November ’04: “Bring. It. On.” I will not go quietly into the night.