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The Rejection that Changed My Life: 25+ Powerful Women on Being Let Down, Turning It Around, and Burning It Up at Work

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From the groundbreaking author of Mistakes I Made at Work, comes the perfect book for anyone who needs inspiration after dealing with rejection, failure, or is searching for a new beginning in the workplace. Featuring fascinating interviews with more than twenty-five women, including Keri Smith, Angela Duckworth, and Roz Chast, The Rejection That Changed My Life provides From the groundbreaking author of Mistakes I Made at Work, comes the perfect book for anyone who needs inspiration after dealing with rejection, failure, or is searching for a new beginning in the workplace. Featuring fascinating interviews with more than twenty-five women, including Keri Smith, Angela Duckworth, and Roz Chast, The Rejection That Changed My Life provides an exciting new way to think about career challenges, changes, and triumphs. Rejections don't go on your r�sum�, but they are part of every successful person's career. All of us will apply for jobs that we don't get and have ambitions that aren't fulfilled, because that is part of being a working person, part of pushing oneself to the next step professionally. While everyone deserves feel-better stories, women are more likely to ruminate, more likely to overthink rejection until it becomes even more painful--a situation that the women in this collection are determined to change, and in so doing, normalize rejection and encourage others to talk about it. Empowering and full of heart, the stories in this collection are diverse in every sense, by top women from many cultural backgrounds and in a wide variety of fields; many of their hard-earned lessons are universal. There are stories from engineers, entrepreneurs, activists, comedians, professors, lawyers, chefs, and more on how they coped with rejection and even experienced it as a catalyst for their own personal professional growth. Powerful, motivating, and endlessly quotable and shareable, The Rejection That Changed My Life will become the go-to book for women at any stage of their career learning to navigate the workforce.


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From the groundbreaking author of Mistakes I Made at Work, comes the perfect book for anyone who needs inspiration after dealing with rejection, failure, or is searching for a new beginning in the workplace. Featuring fascinating interviews with more than twenty-five women, including Keri Smith, Angela Duckworth, and Roz Chast, The Rejection That Changed My Life provides From the groundbreaking author of Mistakes I Made at Work, comes the perfect book for anyone who needs inspiration after dealing with rejection, failure, or is searching for a new beginning in the workplace. Featuring fascinating interviews with more than twenty-five women, including Keri Smith, Angela Duckworth, and Roz Chast, The Rejection That Changed My Life provides an exciting new way to think about career challenges, changes, and triumphs. Rejections don't go on your r�sum�, but they are part of every successful person's career. All of us will apply for jobs that we don't get and have ambitions that aren't fulfilled, because that is part of being a working person, part of pushing oneself to the next step professionally. While everyone deserves feel-better stories, women are more likely to ruminate, more likely to overthink rejection until it becomes even more painful--a situation that the women in this collection are determined to change, and in so doing, normalize rejection and encourage others to talk about it. Empowering and full of heart, the stories in this collection are diverse in every sense, by top women from many cultural backgrounds and in a wide variety of fields; many of their hard-earned lessons are universal. There are stories from engineers, entrepreneurs, activists, comedians, professors, lawyers, chefs, and more on how they coped with rejection and even experienced it as a catalyst for their own personal professional growth. Powerful, motivating, and endlessly quotable and shareable, The Rejection That Changed My Life will become the go-to book for women at any stage of their career learning to navigate the workforce.

52 review for The Rejection that Changed My Life: 25+ Powerful Women on Being Let Down, Turning It Around, and Burning It Up at Work

  1. 4 out of 5

    Zibby Owens

    This book is about 25 powerful women and how they used rejection as a catalyst to do something extraordinary. The book is chock-full of tips and stories about diverse women from different cultural backgrounds and fields, including engineers, entrepreneurs, activists, comedians, professors, lawyers, and chefs. Everyone shares the lessons they learned from rejection and gives actionable tips we can take away and use. This book helps breaks down those stigmas about rejection and acknowledges that s This book is about 25 powerful women and how they used rejection as a catalyst to do something extraordinary. The book is chock-full of tips and stories about diverse women from different cultural backgrounds and fields, including engineers, entrepreneurs, activists, comedians, professors, lawyers, and chefs. Everyone shares the lessons they learned from rejection and gives actionable tips we can take away and use. This book helps breaks down those stigmas about rejection and acknowledges that succeeding is extra hard work when you're a woman, especially if you're a woman of color or from a marginalized background. I found it interesting in the book's introduction how the author tried to interview some people who wouldn't admit their rejection or mistakes. I also liked the emphasis on how it's not how people get rejected that matters; it's how they rebound from it. It's not the rejection itself; it's the ability to get up and find that resilience to keep going. This book isn't just for women to read. It's for anyone who wants to be inspired to keep going in the face of adversity. To listen to my interview with the author, go to my podcast at: https://zibbyowens.com/transcript/jes...

  2. 5 out of 5

    Marie Mccourt

    Rejection is something we all go through, yet it often feels like women deal with it much more – and the effects can be detrimental. In her book, The Rejection That Changed My Life: 25+ Powerful Women on Being Let Down, Turning It Around, and Burning It Up at Work, Jessica Bacal talks about her own rejections as the motivation to hear about how other women have been rejected, dealt with it emotionally, and picked themselves up to move on. Reading about or listening to stories from women in all wa Rejection is something we all go through, yet it often feels like women deal with it much more – and the effects can be detrimental. In her book, The Rejection That Changed My Life: 25+ Powerful Women on Being Let Down, Turning It Around, and Burning It Up at Work, Jessica Bacal talks about her own rejections as the motivation to hear about how other women have been rejected, dealt with it emotionally, and picked themselves up to move on. Reading about or listening to stories from women in all walks of life can help other women feel that we are not alone. There are stories from engineers, entrepreneurs, activists, would-be politicians, comedians, lawyers, chefs, and more on coping with rejection and how each one used it as a facilitator of personal and professional growth. Bacal uses these stories, as well as her own, to help normalize what so many of us have been through – including the emotional scarring, depression, and guilt – while also presenting the ways women have pushed through all of it to come out better. For anyone that is hurting from rejection, knowing others have been where you are, and have used their pain as a motivation to grow, let’s you know that you can make it past, too. I genuinely enjoyed reading The Rejection That Changed My Life as well as listening to the audio book which had many of the stories read in the voice of the woman who wrote her story. The book is well-written and heart-felt, and I sensed that Bacal’s motivation is to help herself, and the rest of us, heal. I’m thankful for the feeling of a community of women who want to help each other.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Meghan

    This book was received as an ARC from PENGUIN GROUP Dutton - Plume in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own. I was so inspired by this book and I was always viewing rejection as definitely not a part of success and I could not help but think of back at school when the boy you liked never liked you back or a girl you wanted to be friends with didn't want to be friends with you and in this case, getting rejected by your dream job does no This book was received as an ARC from PENGUIN GROUP Dutton - Plume in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own. I was so inspired by this book and I was always viewing rejection as definitely not a part of success and I could not help but think of back at school when the boy you liked never liked you back or a girl you wanted to be friends with didn't want to be friends with you and in this case, getting rejected by your dream job does not always mean that there is nothing better for you in store. These women are so powerful, determined and loaded with fortitude which made my self-esteem rise to the next level. I also loved how one of the women recommended, How to Win Friends and Influence People by Dale Carnegie and after immediately reading her story, I ordered the book from my local library even though I read the book a long time ago. I learned so much from each of the stories featured and I personally want to thank Jessica Bacal for reaching out to these women and sharing their stories through this book. We will consider adding this title to our Self Help collection at our library. That is why we give this book 5 stars.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Nancy

    Emotional Support for Rejection Rejection happens to everyone. It can be very painful when you lose the job you thought was made for you, or the promotion goes to someone else, or the article you worked on for weeks is rejected. These are painful experiences that can make you question your abilities. Your self-esteem may take a serious hit, but it’s not the end of the world. It helps to have someone to share your pain with and to learn about how they recovered from a setback. This book is perfect Emotional Support for Rejection Rejection happens to everyone. It can be very painful when you lose the job you thought was made for you, or the promotion goes to someone else, or the article you worked on for weeks is rejected. These are painful experiences that can make you question your abilities. Your self-esteem may take a serious hit, but it’s not the end of the world. It helps to have someone to share your pain with and to learn about how they recovered from a setback. This book is perfect for those times when you need to know that other women have gone through a rejection and come out of it stronger and more resilient than before. It also helps to know that sometimes a better opportunity is right around the corner. The author does an excellent job interviewing women from a variety of professions and backgrounds. Each of them has a story to tell and at least some of them will be right on point to help you see the way ahead. I highly recommend this book to read now and have on your shelf for support when your turn for rejection comes. I received this book from Penguin Random House for this review.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Margaret Roberts

    This empowering book with advice and stories from over 25 women on their rejections, failures and new beginnings at work is one I would recommend to anyone across industries for a motivational boost. I found it interesting that the author only interviewed women (she calls this out in the intro) and I really liked this aspect. As a woman I've felt a lot of what the women interviewed have felt including the need for perfectionism & how disheartening and personal it feel when a rejection (big or sma This empowering book with advice and stories from over 25 women on their rejections, failures and new beginnings at work is one I would recommend to anyone across industries for a motivational boost. I found it interesting that the author only interviewed women (she calls this out in the intro) and I really liked this aspect. As a woman I've felt a lot of what the women interviewed have felt including the need for perfectionism & how disheartening and personal it feel when a rejection (big or small) happens. I found all of the interviews very encouraging and found myself wanting to change my own mindset on rejection. My only criticism was the interviews were all fairly short and I do wish there would have been more from some of the women (although the length felt like it was on purpose considering the number of women interviewed).

  6. 4 out of 5

    Charlene Margot

    For everyone -- and that means all of us! -- who has ever experienced rejection or disappointment, this book is for you. From the million-dollar grant not received, to the passion project not funded, to the loss of a "dream job," we all experience failure and disappointment, both personally and professionally. Jessica Bacal's empathetic collection of stories from "25 powerful women" who experienced rejection offers important life lessons for us all. Rejection can provide perspective, open doors, For everyone -- and that means all of us! -- who has ever experienced rejection or disappointment, this book is for you. From the million-dollar grant not received, to the passion project not funded, to the loss of a "dream job," we all experience failure and disappointment, both personally and professionally. Jessica Bacal's empathetic collection of stories from "25 powerful women" who experienced rejection offers important life lessons for us all. Rejection can provide perspective, open doors, and change the course of our lives -- for the better. This warm, inspiring, and ultimately hopeful book should be required reading for every mom, woman, and child!

  7. 5 out of 5

    Shayla Bezjak-Martinez

    I have really enjoyed reading this book. As a young professional, reading stories and interviews about women navigating failure has been encouraging as I start to think about my life path. The chapters are short which makes for a great, quick, before-bed read. The book has also introduced me to awesome women in the world of business, comedy, and entrepreneurship whom I had not heard of before. Lastly, the book includes writing exercises that have helped me hone in/understand my purpose and ident I have really enjoyed reading this book. As a young professional, reading stories and interviews about women navigating failure has been encouraging as I start to think about my life path. The chapters are short which makes for a great, quick, before-bed read. The book has also introduced me to awesome women in the world of business, comedy, and entrepreneurship whom I had not heard of before. Lastly, the book includes writing exercises that have helped me hone in/understand my purpose and identity as a young woman.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Emily

    I picked up this book planning to skim some of the stories and ended up feeling magnetized to it. The particularities of these women's lives end up working together to feel incredibly universal, empowering, and inspiring. This book acts as a collage of experiences that normalize the rejection and failure inevitable in a working life. It hit me personally at just the right moment and I feel so grateful for its existence. I picked up this book planning to skim some of the stories and ended up feeling magnetized to it. The particularities of these women's lives end up working together to feel incredibly universal, empowering, and inspiring. This book acts as a collage of experiences that normalize the rejection and failure inevitable in a working life. It hit me personally at just the right moment and I feel so grateful for its existence.

  9. 5 out of 5

    R. Holding

    Loved the follow up book to Mistakes I Made at Work. The Rejection that Changed My Life is many things: it's a great read, it's a peak into the lives of so many interesting women, it's a consolation that we are not alone in experiencing rejection, and it's a guide to seek out and learn from rejections. I put tips I learned from the book into practice and they immediately paid off. Highly recommend. Loved the follow up book to Mistakes I Made at Work. The Rejection that Changed My Life is many things: it's a great read, it's a peak into the lives of so many interesting women, it's a consolation that we are not alone in experiencing rejection, and it's a guide to seek out and learn from rejections. I put tips I learned from the book into practice and they immediately paid off. Highly recommend.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Sarah

    I found so much to learn from Jessica Bacal's latest book. The interviews spanned women's lives bey age, experience, and field, which meant I was able to see how rejection cuts across, well, life/lives. The idea that a "no" isn't the end, trite as that sounds as I write it down, actually is a message many of us need to hear--over and over, in different forms, with a huge variety of outcomes. These were such compelling interviews. A great read for people of any age--high school on up. I found so much to learn from Jessica Bacal's latest book. The interviews spanned women's lives bey age, experience, and field, which meant I was able to see how rejection cuts across, well, life/lives. The idea that a "no" isn't the end, trite as that sounds as I write it down, actually is a message many of us need to hear--over and over, in different forms, with a huge variety of outcomes. These were such compelling interviews. A great read for people of any age--high school on up.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Kame Gutierrez

    I appreciate all the people who came forward to share their rejection stories, it made me look back at certain times of my life and instead of feeling embarrassed at having been turned down, I feel proud of myself for having moved forward. I hope that one day, my rejection story may inspired someone.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Mandy Hazen

    This book shows you how failure is a way of life. From famous to regular people like you and I we all fail. This is so necessary for everyone to read in life. Highly recommend. Especially loved the reflection to true life to humanize my feelings and relate. I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Sofia The Great

    Inspiring. A good read.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Francesca

    This book was incredibly empowering. Rejection hurts (sometimes quite badly), but as these honest and insightful stories show, it can also be a catalyst for reflection and growth.

  15. 4 out of 5

    OTIS

  16. 4 out of 5

    Katie Marie

  17. 4 out of 5

    Zaineb

  18. 5 out of 5

    Kristie

  19. 4 out of 5

    Angela

  20. 5 out of 5

    TEELOCK Mithilesh

  21. 4 out of 5

    Gabrielle

  22. 5 out of 5

    Kayla

  23. 4 out of 5

    Paul Vogelzang

  24. 5 out of 5

    Lacy

  25. 5 out of 5

    Hannah Poole

  26. 5 out of 5

    Danielle Zimmerman

  27. 5 out of 5

    Lee-Anne Veage

  28. 4 out of 5

    Lauren (Shooting Stars Mag) Becker

  29. 5 out of 5

    Kristin (Kritters Ramblings)

  30. 4 out of 5

    Hannah

  31. 5 out of 5

    Amanda Bull Chafin

  32. 5 out of 5

    Maddie Gould

  33. 5 out of 5

    Jeannette Bodnar

  34. 5 out of 5

    Karine Desruisseaux

  35. 5 out of 5

    Stefanie

  36. 4 out of 5

    Ana Cristina Merino Jiménez

  37. 4 out of 5

    Jenn Mckague

  38. 4 out of 5

    Tess Marie

  39. 4 out of 5

    Frederick Rotzien

  40. 5 out of 5

    V Dixon

  41. 4 out of 5

    Micielle

  42. 4 out of 5

    Nancy Adams

  43. 4 out of 5

    Amy Wigand

  44. 5 out of 5

    Natterbug

  45. 5 out of 5

    Mbk

  46. 4 out of 5

    Deborah Gerhart

  47. 5 out of 5

    Brenda Maki

  48. 5 out of 5

    Melissa ahmed

  49. 5 out of 5

    April Rasdal

  50. 4 out of 5

    Sam

  51. 5 out of 5

    ReadToMe

  52. 4 out of 5

    Jeanne Grace

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