Giving up when you’re rejected is easy. I’ve done it before. You probably have, too. The four members of U2 didn’t give up when they rejected, though. They’re wealthy, famous and successful today. But they wouldn’t be if they had given up in 1979 when a major record label rejected them.
U2 formed in Dublin, Ireland, in 1976 as a band called Feedback. After a couple of name changes, they ended up as a four-man band called U2 by 1978. They were able to release some music just for the Irish market, but nobody seemed interested in taking them seriously.
“Thank you for submitting your tape of ‘U2′ to RSO, we have listened with careful consideration, but feel it is not suitable for us at present,” said the letter that was addressed to Paul Hewson, who you might know better as Bono. “We wish you luck with your future career.”
I can imagine Bono finding the envelope from RSO in the mail. I can imagine him opening the envelope and pulling the letter out. I can imagine his disappointment at being rejected.
So what do you do when you’re rejected? Do you talk yourself into being “realistic” and accepting that it’s time to move on? Or do you have a kind of hope and faith that’s willing to ignore the empirical evidence of rejection?