How do we feel when we hear the word no? When a publisher or an agent says no (as in a rejection), it stings us temporarily. We move on and submit again because rejections are part of the writer's life. But how do we feel when an acquaintance or a relative tell us no? Often, we feel miserable for quite a long while.
People use the word no to assert themselves or to feel superior. As a result, this little word invalidates our remarks and leaves us speechless, powerless, and crushed. This is a form of bullying—intimidating someone verbally, through e-mails, or with text-messaging.
Most writers have experienced rejection from a publisher or agent, but this is not a form of bullying. It is a method that is used to convey that a submission is not up to standards. However when we deliver the perfect manuscript, that rejection can turn into an acceptance.
On the other hand, people who habitually say no have developed a trait that can rarely be changed. Anything we utter (or e-mail or text) will and shall be met with nope. So, to shield ourselves from being hurt, we can focus on what we can change. We can steer clear of toxic people. We can politely limit contact and conversation. Then when we do so, we can surround ourselves with people who communicate with more respect.