Dealing with rejection is a tough challenge for anyone. No one enjoys getting turned down or hearing that they’re not the right fit for something they were feeling optimistic about. It’s also an easy situation for you to let self-doubt take over, which can lead to increased anxiety or stress if things aren’t going your way. The good thing is, rejection is something everyone will go through and it brings in more good than you might think.
But, despite what positive things come out from it down the road, in the moment, it’s a pretty rotten feeling. You might feel embarrassed, confused, sad, angry or annoyed — or an uncomfortable mixture of all those. When it comes to dealing with rejection, there are a few things you can do that help soften the blow and get you back up on your feet faster.
Suppressing your feelings will only lead to a major breakdown later in life. You might be the person who finds it easier to keep things inside or forces yourself to pretend nothing happened, but these are temporary coping mechanisms that won’t lead to any beneficial outcomes. Letting your mind tire itself out thinking of the situation means it’ll be easier to analyze and process down the road. If you need to cry, let it out. If you’re angry, don’t hold it in. If you’re frustrated or lost, let yourself feel it. Acknowledging your emotions helps you out when it comes to releasing them. If you know how you’re feeling, you’ll know the best way to deal with it — whether that’s journaling, going for a workout or talking it out with a friend.
Don’t let black and white thoughts control your perspective on why you were rejected. Instead of thinking “I’m never going to get a job,” challenge yourself. Thinking of something as simple as “Well, what if I do get a job?” can help train your brain to avoid turning to negative assumptions right away. If you find that you’re placing the blame on you or tearing yourself apart, try to stomp that out as quickly as possible. Frankly, it’s a lie and not all your fault.
The other half of it is breaking down the confidence you have will only worsen your feelings and might scare you away from trying for other opportunities. It’s not easy to just switch gears up there in your head, but promising yourself you’ll take little steps by making micro goals to stay level-headed and fair can make a big difference.
Once you’ve given yourself a day or two to deal with the heavy feelings, it’s important to make some changes. Of course, as mentioned above, being rejected wasn’t your fault. There are plenty of reasons why things happen the way they do. The hiring manager could’ve had a friend who interviewed as well. Maybe it was an off day for them, or maybe your skill set was too advanced for this position. While you can’t control the situation, you can control what you bring to the table. If your resume or cover letter needs a clean up, make it happen. Brush up on your interview skills if you feel you’re getting a little rusty. Get an outfit that makes you feel like you already own the company. Doing things to improve your chances of getting hired will never hinder your search.
After dealing with rejection, taking those changes you’ve made and putting them into action is the best route to go. This gives you thicker skin and really helps you figure out how to avoid taking the rejection personally. The more times you find yourself dealing with rejection, the quicker you’ll be able to rebound and continue the hustle. Once you’ve transformed your resume and revitalized your skills, start applying nonstop.
According to The Muse, if you’re unemployed, you should be taking 30-to-40 hours of every week to look for jobs. If you currently have a position, it can be anywhere from eight-to-10 hours. Job-hunting becomes another job in itself, so try not to let rejection slow you down.
If anything, rejection is one of the best paths leading to your dream job. When dealing with rejection, we’re often made to feel that a door has closed in our face and we’re missing out on the perfect opportunity. In reality, we just can’t see down the road. Your situation always works out how it should. Ten years from now, you’ll most likely be working for the company you’ve always wanted to or at least have a job you love and you’ll laugh when you think about how you got to where you are. If that opportunity had presented itself, you might not even be at the company you love.
Rejection is more so a protection from what isn’t best for you, your goals and your lifestyle. Just wait and see how it pans out. That “Oh my god I see why this happened now” feeling will be coming in hot.
Lead image via Getty
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