Crushed By Hearing No? Answer This One Question.

If you experience “no” and it hurts….inquiry can teach you what it’s for

Last week Peace Talk entered the sound waves again. Plus yesterday Episode 92. If you haven’t listened yet, check these two episodes out and let me know your thoughts.

The topic of Peace Talk yesterday was something filled with devastating suffering for many, depending on the situation:

Hearing NO from someone or something.

  • No, I don’t want to take your class (that was my situation)
  • No, I don’t want to be married to you (um, also my situation)
  • No, I can’t come to your party (yep, I’ve had that situation)
  • No, I won’t be showing up to the event (again, I’ve been there)
  • No, we’re not hiring you (hmmm, I think there’s a pattern)
  • No, you can’t have that (yes, starting age 2)
  • No, I’m not talking with you (rats, this has happened too)
  • No, I don’t want what you’re offering (also since childhood)
  • No, we aren’t friends anymore (ouch, yes it’s happened)


Why’d you have to bring this up?

How ’bout let’s watch youtube videos this morning instead. Do we really have to look at this today?

Aren’t you over that whole I-don’t-like-no thing by now?

But diving into this topic, while initially very difficult depending on what you’re believing is lost to you, can be powerful beyond words.

What is your relationship to this NO?

Why don’t you like it?

What I find it boils down to is one basic very painful belief set:

I am not liked, not loved, unappreciated, unworthy, and wrong.


How do you react when you believe this deep, gut-wrenching thought when you hear a “no” from somewhere in your life?

Some people feel awful and withdraw, run away very wounded.

Some people begin quickly to find fault with the person saying “no” and make a list of their defects.

Maybe you even attack the no-sayer.

He’s got it all wrong. How could he be making this mistake? He’s so dumb. She’s so ignorant. They’re wrong.

Maybe you try to bend over backwards adjusting yourself so you get a “yes” instead and the person changes their mind. Maybe you twist yourself into a pretzel with stress and anxiety, thinking about how hopeless this is, how you wish you did it differently in the past.

Some people wish they were dead after they hear “no”.

Some people feel this way when relationships end, with family or life partners.

It feels so devastating when you believe that it’s true that hearing a “no” means something is wrong with you (or them).

Who would you be without the belief that NO is wrong, or worse, than YES?

Almost hard to fathom, right?

It’s so ingrained that yes, yes, yes is soooooo much better than no, no, no.

But what would it be like if you really didn’t know this?

Let’s say you get a twinge of thirst.

Some time goes by, and you’re more and more thirsty.

You’re not near a place where there’s running water easily accessible. You ask someone walking by if they have water.


You go into the nearest shop and ask if they have water.


You ask where the nearest grocery store is, or water fountain.

It’s pretty far away. You don’t have a car.

This is not looking good.

At this point, some people might feel so disappointed they begin to say things like “I am such an idiot, I should have brought a water bottle, what was I thinking?” (I thought this myself on a hike once in the mountains).

“I am so stupid, I should have been kinder to my partner, or clearer to that student, or more fun to that friend, or more curious and patient with that acquaintance.”

Who would you be, though, if you did not see this “no” situation as a major problem?

You wouldn’t give up asking or looking, and you wouldn’t freak out or hate yourself for needing something, either.

I notice disappointment.

It feels sweet and touching, like something inside me cares very much and it’s OK.

But not pushing and aggressive.

I might say “can I ask why your answer is no?” and I listen carefully, with great curiosity and fascination.

I trust the movement of the universe, the way of it.

Who knows what good, interesting, kind and brilliant thing comes from this “no” and the awareness of Not This?

Turning the thought around:

NO is better than YES (in my situation).

How could this be true?

Can you find examples?

  1. There are fewer people to attend to now in this course, an easier number to learn about, work with, remember and meet with one-on-one.
  2. Everyone has the immense freedom to come and go as they please, to find their yes or no….and this means me, too
  3. I have more free time, quiet time, unscheduled time
  4. I get to know myself even better and question the thoughts that there is something wrong with me—I notice there isn’t
  5. I become delighted in my own company
  6. I notice what is beautiful, precious, loving, wonderful right here in this room, without a “yes”

What if your NO is the Universe and Life NOT giving you enlightenment?

I need a YES from life or God or the Universe or Source (whatever you wish to call it that feels mysterious and beyond the little you)…..

… that true?

Are you sure you don’t already have a yes?

Look around

One who does what the Friend wants done will never need a friend.

There’s a bankruptcy that’s pure gain.

The moon stays bright when it doesn’t avoid the night. 

A rose’s rarest essence lives in the thorn. 

~ Rumi

What if this “no” is actually your Friend?

If you think it isn’t, are you sure

What is ultimately the great threat to you in this “no”

Breathe deep the essence of “no”, the brightness of “no”

Keep inquiring.

The great question, when it comes to feeling crushed by hearing the answer “no”….

…..what is actually being lost?

Are you supported?

Even if it’s the chair you’re sitting in. Notice.

Much Love,


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