Matthew Del Negro, Overcoming 10,000 No’s

Everyone has faced challenges and rejections and disappointments to get where they are today. Failure is just as much a component of success as hard work. Matthew Del Negro is an actor (“The Sopranos,” “Scandal,” “Wind River”) and host of the 10,000 “No”s podcast. This week, he shares tips on overcoming adversity, finding strength in failure, and picking yourself up again if you fall. 

As an actor, it took Del Negro years of auditioning to land the part that got him known. He worked side jobs to pay the bills and sometimes, found himself feeling like it would never work out. It’s somewhere we’ve all been. It can be hard to hear the word “no” and have the mental strength to give it another go. But only by throwing ourselves relentlessly at challenge after challenge can we find our true potential. Perseverance is the name of the game. After all, if we don’t try, how can we know that this time, the answer won’t be “yes”? 

What You’ll Learn:

  • Pick yourself up and try again if you face failure or rejection
  • Dream big and have high hopes, but keep your expectations grounded
  • Push the boundaries of disappointment to find your full potential
  • Learn that some things are out of your control
  • Recognize that you’re not alone; everyone has overcome adversity


“You don’t know everything from where you’re standing. You don’t know what’s right down the road from you, so you’ve got to pick yourself up and get back in the game or you won’t have that shot.” -Matthew Del Negro

“You’ve got to be excited and you’ve got to be prepared and you’ve got to be great every time out of the gate, but even with that, sometimes it’s going to go well and sometimes it’s not going to go well.” -Matthew Del Negro

“It’s up to each of us to push those limits and push those boundaries of experience and failure to learn what works for us.” -Jake Thompson

“You cannot really learn or grow or transform if you are not at least at the risk of failing.” -Matthew Del Negro

You get one life—you may as well reach for something.” -Matthew Del Negro

“If you’re not putting yourself in those positions to be challenged, then you’re not really going to grow to your full potential.” -Matthew Del Negro


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Episode 65