Rejection. Creativity.

These two words are unrelated and ought not to be in the same line. But I have a story that will change your perspective on their relationship.

As a youth, I often viewed rejection as the gradual decimation of my self-worth. If my article got rejected, it meant my words were not worthy enough to put for the outside world. If I did not win a writing contest, it meant everyone’s writing style was better than mine.

If a client edited my work, it meant my energy, resources and time were wasted efforts. If my manuscript was rejected, it meant I was just a wannabe writer added to their rubbish pile. And if my job application was declined, it meant I was never supposed to be in this career path.

For a long time, I held on to this destructive ideology and kept this harmful trait to myself. During this period, I admired my favorite writers. I devoured their books, blog posts and general viewpoints on life. I copied their writing styles and claimed it as my own.

But because of my fixed mindset, the creative genie in me finally waned off and got locked in the lamp of criticism and self-esteem.

Yet, one day, after seeking self-awareness and a bid to know more about creativity; the truth dawned on me. Creativity also involves a process of rejection.

Hence, I stopped the art of copy and paste; instead, I added my personal touch in form of experiences, knowledge and outlook. This led to the application of the copy-innovate-and-paste technique.

I realized creativity is more than saying yes to producing works of art, science and business; it is saying No to self-limiting beliefs.

Creativity is not just accepting the fact you have to think outside the box. It also means rejecting the tendency to remain in the box.


For you to create something spectacular in your workplace, you have to reject mediocrity.

For you to create through curiosity and love for learning, you have to reject your right to be right all the time.

For you to create through constant improvement, you have to reject instant perfection.

For you to create works continuously admired by true fans, you have to reject the fact that everyone will truly appreciate your work.

For you to create true success, you have to reject failure as an end, but see it as a means to a victorious end.

For you to create something that makes people go ‘Aha’ and ‘Wow’, you have to reject the notion that it will only take one Eureka moment to do that.

Until I realized Creativity is not just saying Yes to developing the creative genie in you. It is also saying No to the mediocre thieves in your head.

So dear creative, what will you reject today to unleash your creativity?