No matter how confident, accomplished and comfortable you may feel sometimes that can all be shaken by one little, (or not so little) thing called Rejection! Rejection is tough, there is no sugar coating the fact that it feels awful! It can leave you feeling lost, confused, heart broken, insecure, anxious, angry, and alone.
Rejection never feels good! But in this post I hope to help show you that you can use that rejection in a good way by channeling it into positive changes for yourself. This is a post I have shared in the past, I have tweaked it a little. Rejection is something everyone deals with, and so I felt it was important to share this post and hopefully it can help you see that rejection is not the end, it is the beginning of new, amazing possibilities.
Have you ever experienced Rejection? Have you ever experienced
- being broken up with?
- not getting a job you wanted?
- being asked for a divorce?
- having a friend request denied?
- being unfriended on Facebook?
- not being given a promotion?
- being told your work wasn’t good enough?
- not getting that modelling gig?
- someone unfollowing your blog?
- no one wanting to publish your book?
- friends ignoring you at school?
- being cheated on?
- not getting into the university, or college you wanted?
- someone saying no when you asked them on a date?
All these things listed can leave you feeling rejected, leading to disillusionment, hurt and anger. It hurts to be rejected, it totally sucks, and sometimes it seems to make no sense! You can give your partner your all, only to have him/her turn around and break things off totally unexpectedly. Questions start to appear in your mind like
- What did I do wrong?
- What’s wrong with me?
We analyse our part in things, and often blame ourselves, we can say things like
- I am not good enough
- I wasn’t good enough
- I am worthless
- I should have been better
- I should have given more
- I am a failure
- No on will ever love me
- I’ll be alone for ever
Rejection is a bit like grief, we have to go through stages in order to process what has happened. We feel hurt, confused and we ask why? We are often in denial at first, believing there may have been a mistake, or thinking the person who rejected us will change their mind. But after a while we realise this isn’t going to happen and we start to get
- angry, we believe what has happened is unfair. “I should have gotten that job, that idiot interviewer was so wrong.” “How could my ex do this to me? What a basted/bitch”. During the anger stage we need to watch ourselves, this is often the stage where we do things we may later regret or be embarrassed by. Anger is a very normal reaction to feeling rejected, I recommend talking through your feelings of anger with a close friend who wont judge. We can get angry at ourselves, or angry at the person, or company we feel rejected by. It is completely normal! But use that anger in a positive way. Sure if you need to hit a pillow or scream in the privacy of your home, then do that! Going to the gym, for a run, a swim, or a long walk can really help during this stage. You have energy to burn, just do it is a positive way! It is OK to feel mad, but turn that into a positive by turning it into determination to make your life better.
Like with the stages of grief we often begin to
- bargain, perhaps we say to our ex that if they take us back we will be better, we will do certain things that perhaps we think we didn’t do enough of during the relationship. “If you give me one more chance I will promise to stop nagging.” “If you give us another chance I will be more accepting of your time with your friends.” Really think though, are these things you are willing to do? And was the relationship really worth saving? Or sometimes we bargain with God, “If you just help me get that job I will go to church more.”
Often though this bargaining does not work and we can be left feeling drained, embarrassed, depleted, and even
- depressed. We no longer have the energy we had when we were angry. Remember these stages are completely normal, and it is OK to cry. Pop on a sad song, eat too much chocolate, have a pyjama day, hide under the covers, avoid phone calls, it is OK to feel like crap! The most important thing is though that you do not stay in this stage! Like I said fine go ahead and have a big cry, we all need to let our emotions out, and rejection hurts. But don’t stay isolated for too long. After a solo day of misery, call a friend and hang out with them, talk, get out of the house, go for walks, a swim, go for a nice cup of tea. Surround yourself with supportive people who will accept your need to be sad for a couple of days, and then you need to find productive ways to deal with your sadness. Join an art class, or cooking class. Get exercising, go out for dinner with friends, see a comedy, take up a new hobby and start to feel more positive with each day. Sadness can sneak up on us, so be prepared to shed a few more tears, or feel hurt now and then. Obviously it will depend on the degree of rejection. But a step backwards is OK, just pick yourself up and move forward again. Allow yourself to have moments of pure sadness, but also allow yourself to feel joy.
If you feel you are not able to get out of the sad stage, you should speak to a professional. Never be embarrassed to admit you need help with dealing with your emotions! Mindfulness, meditation, yoga, exercise, eating healthy foods, chatting with friends are all great ways to cope with feeling rejected and depressed. But seek help if you feel you are unable to get out of bed for days on end, or if you loose your appetite, or find yourself getting stressed every time the phone rings! If you find you have lost a lust for life make sure you talk about it with someone you trust.
Finally there is
- acceptance. This is the place you want to get to, the place where you can finally breathe again. It can be difficult reaching this point, especially when you have felt the rejection was unjust or it came out of the blue. Moving through the stages of rejection can be slow, or quick, and this will depend greatly on your personality, and the level of the rejection. Being asked for a divorce will be much harder to move through than being unfriended on Facebook by an old school friend. But no matter what the rejection was it will hurt, remember that this is completely normal.
“Every time I thought I was being rejected from something good, I was actually being re-directed to something better.”
– Dr. Steve Maraboli
When you accept the situation (rejection), you are taking the best step towards moving on, the step to becoming confident again, and feeling positive about your life. (You may want to read my post “Are you Speaking the wrong language?”) The best thing you can do is learn from this experience, to grow, and to understand that sometimes you will not get the answers you wish to get. You won’t always know why you didn’t get the job, or why this person unfriended you, or didn’t want to date you. And you won’t always know why your partner wanted to end your relationship. Or perhaps you know, but the answers don’t make sense to you. You have to understand that there are always two sides, and we can not force others to explain or open up if they just refuse to.
Acceptance can be a great place to reflect on how you can improve the life you are living. New possibilities can start to open up if you let them. Learn from your past, was there signs you ignored, or missed? This is your new opportunity to shine, to study, to find new hobbies, to embrace a new direction in your life. Perhaps if you missed out on the job you wanted you can look at what ways you can improve on your skill set, or interview skills. Take some time to really consider how you treat yourself, and look at what you say to yourself. Google some positive affirmations, write them on some paper and pin them to a vision board (you can see how to create a vision board here), or pop them on your fridge or bathroom mirror. This is your chance to be the you that you really need to become in order to be happy, to live an authentic life.
Take what you have learned from this difficult situation, be proud of yourself for getting through a hard time, and grateful for what you have learned. Rejection is never easy, but it is through hard times that you can find new paths that you never thought existed, and new and better things will come your way. Remember rejection is not the same as failure, and if you keep moving forward you will find the future, and the success that you are meant to find.
I hope these tips help, if you have any tips please share them below.
Thanks for joining me, love Mackenzie xx
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