Have you ever asked for something and been told no? What was your response? Did you ask why? Did you rethink your approach and try asking a different way or did you come up with a plan to get a yes? Or did you just give up?
Luke 18:1-8 tells a parable about a widow who was treated wrongly by an adversary and would not give up in seeking justice. A judge had ignored her pleas several times, but eventually, due to her persistence, the judge listened to her and rectified the situation. Jesus tells this story in order to convey to His disciples the importance of not giving up on something when you don’t get the answer you’re looking for right away. He tells us to “always pray and not give up.”
This Biblical wisdom can be applied to many areas of our lives, and serve as inspiration for us when things seem like they will never turn out in our favor. Whether it be prayer, relationships, business, education, or sports, you can always dig down deep and use that never give up spirit to push through the challenges that come along with getting no for an answer.
For an example of perseverance in sports, look to Michael Jordan. Michael won six championships during his time in the NBA and is considered by many people to be the greatest basketball player of all time. His resilience and mental toughness gave him an edge over other players and his experience with being told “no”, but not giving up, spurred him to achieve great things. When Michael tried out for his high school basketball team and was told no, he worked harder than ever to become a better player. He went on to be a six-time NBA champion because he never gave up and wouldn’t let no be a permanent answer. He says “Obstacles don’t have to stop you. If you run into a wall, don’t turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it.”
Not everyone plays in the NBA, but everyone has walls that they run into in their lives. We each have the tools to get past these walls, and we can...or we have the choice to stop and turn around and never advance.
In business, Aaron Walker has run into plenty of walls, and has heard no plenty of times. He could choose to give in and accept defeat, but he doesn’t. Aaron knows that no today doesn’t mean no forever, and that’s one of the mottos he lives by.
Aaron was working in a pawn shop when he got the idea to open one of his own. However, he didn’t have any experience with owning a business yet. He approached the owner of the pawn shop he was working for, and asked him if he could have an opportunity to own part of that business. The answer he got was absolutely not. Aaron found a way around this initial no by going into business with other partners and quickly established one of the most successful pawn shop businesses in the country. Years later, he formed a partnership with the very man who told him no in the first place.
Aaron also ran into a few obstacles in the early stages of his pawn shop business that would have made some people give up, but he found a way to change those obstacles into opportunities.
In one instance, he was placing flyers in the mailboxes of everyone in town, notifying them of deals at the pawn shop. He worked tirelessly to put a flyer in every mailbox, yet soon received notification from the post office that they would take legal action against him if he continued to put things inside the mailboxes. Nevertheless, Aaron didn’t give up. He used ingenuity to turn the obstacle into an opportunity. Since he couldn’t put anything inside the mailboxes, he taped a flyer to the outside instead. This ended up giving the pawn shop even more exposure, as anyone passing by could also see the advertisements.
In View From the Top, Aaron says:
“No, to me, just means no for the day; it doesn’t mean no forever. No means no until you figure a way to make it a yes.”
Most people stop at the first no. Are you willing to persevere through those temporary no moments and turn them into yes?
To learn more about how Aaron turns no into yes in his life, and how you can persevere through no moments in your own life, pre-order your copy ofView From the Top today.