Jordan pays no attention to where things end up. He's all about what happens to him. Jordan does not even realize where he's coming from -- when he sees what happens to him. Jordan's mind is preoccupied with reacting, like there's no choice to create a different experience right now.
Jordan can tell you if he's been told "no" or "yes". He pays close attention to what's being said when he's asked for the order, an appointment, a date or a deal. At least he does not "space out" so badly he misses the reply to his request, question or invitation.Jordan gets gloomy when he's been told "no" several times in a row. His friend Jane doesn't say to him: "cheer up Jordan". Jane says "See where that ends up? You're saying "yes to no" and making yourself miserable". This bewilders Jordan when he's feeling defeated, rejected and downhearted.
Jordan attended a sales seminar that told him "don't take 'no' for an answer. If the buyer makes excuses, push back until you can close the deal. Overcome the buyer's resistance with persistence". This sounded really good to Jordan. He made up his mind to say "no" to no. He would stop saying "yes" to no and end up feeling defeated.The next time Jane saw Jordan, he told her of this change in his outlook and approach to get a "yes". She asked him: "Where does that end up?" Jordan resented Jane's question, just like he resented getting told "no" by the customers who were too stupid to buy what he's selling. "Who's side are you on Jane?" he wondered silently to himself. Jordan tries to answer Jane's question without his resentment showing: "It ends up with me being confident, determined and competitive and that's a lot better than my feeling defeated, rejected and downhearted".
Jane said: "Yes that is better and there's something even better than feeling confident, determined and competitive. Have you ever heard the adage: don't take no for an answer, take no for a question?" Jordan was bewildered again. Jane explains: "when getting told 'no' gives us a question, we can wonder about our approach, our assumptions and the effect of those on the other person. We can realize where we are coming from and where that ends up. When we receive all those benefits from being told "no", we become grateful, open minded and receptive to change".Jordan seeks clarification from Jane. "You mean I'm going to say 'thanks I needed that' when someone tells me 'no' to my face?" Jane sees the conclusion that Jordan jumped to -- that missed her point. "Gratitude rarely comes that quickly, Jordan. Appreciation occurs after the "no" ends up showing us how to change our approach, feel differently from the start and value the 'no' as a question".Jordan gets a glimmer of how to use Jane's advice. "Where do you recommend coming from -- to end up being grateful for getting told 'no'?" Jane's eyes twinkle as she realizes Jordan has changed viewpoints. "Come from a place where you're thinking 'this is going to show me something I don't know. This is mysterious story that is unfolding in a way that I don't already know where it will end up. This will be giving me better questions no matter how it turns out'".
Jordan cracks a big smile: "So when I take their 'no' as a question, that ends up where I'm taking their 'yes' as an answer.