Whether you like it or not, rejection is quite normal and a natural part of our everyday lives that we must cope with. At some point in your professional and personal life you will experience rejection, this will prevent you from submitting more business proposals, dating another person, going for job interviews, making more job searches or applying to colleges among many others.
Take for instance; you have spent an ample time to prepare an amazing, well-detailed college application, only to receive an email stating that your application has not been accepted. Your mind has already been committed to this school that does not want you. Consequently, you feel dejected and broken. Or you see someone that you like, asked the person out but rather than been accepted, you were rejected. Of course, these instances seem like big failures. Likewise, being rejected despite having an excellent resume can make one think everything is over or something is wrong.
Most times, we respond to all these rejections in a negative emotional way that can leave us in a state of paralyzing fear and dejection. And if not properly handled the drive towards suicide may seem like a comfort. If you aim to create success for yourself in any area of life and rejection is a hurdle for you at the moment, it is such a wonderful relief that you can learn how to deal with it.
In this post, I’m going to talk about how you can generally handle rejections in any whatever form it comes.
1. Do Not Take It Personal
It’s often very difficult not to take things personally. But the next time you come across rejection at a business meeting, try as much as possible to not take it personal, don’t let a simple “no” ruin your day. This is also not the time to continue to relaying your business proposals or earnest efforts to impress. When you hear “NO” think of it instead as a step closer to getting a “YES”. You might think that your college admissions decisions are a direct indicator of your worth as a person or as a student. It’s important to remember that this is definitely not the case. College admissions decisions are based on so many factors that you cannot control. If you did your best to control the ones you could, then you need to know that there were other factors at play. You never know what other factors are at play in college admissions so taking a rejection personally is not a good idea.
2. Keep Positive
It’s easy to when you feel something slipping away to have your attitude slide downhill as well but try your best to keep it in check. Keep upbeat during your meeting and your enthusiasm may become catchy. Handling things in a professional and positive manner may keep you at the forefront of your prospects mind if situations change. It’s not uncommon for investors to get 30-40% of their deals from follow up. Leaving things on a positive note can help those percentages increase. The best way to deal with rejections is to keep a smile on your face. Turn each rejection into a learning opportunity and stay focused on your ultimate goal. The day will come that you that great job are finally matched.
3. Avoid The Blame Game
The rejection may have been out of your grasps but that doesn’t mean that the fault lies on somebody else’s shoulders. Accept responsibility for the things you could have done differently without putting too much pressure on yourself and recognize that sometimes these things just happen.
4. Your Top Choice May Not Be The Best For You
While it might seem like the most perfect college you could imagine, no college that doesn’t recognize what an amazing candidate you are is going to be the best fit for you. There are hundreds of amazing colleges out there, and the odds are high that you will be able to succeed elsewhere if you set yourself to attending one that’s the best fit for you personally. Start by identifying what it was about your dream school that made it so alluring. If you can pinpoint a few of the most desirable qualities, you can bet you’ll be able to find those same qualities at other schools that would be happy to have you as a student.
5. Don’t Be too Hard on Yourself
A job rejection isn’t a failure. It’s simply you not being the missing piece that fits that employer’s puzzle at the particular point in time. Once you reach out and maintain those bridges, it’s time for some self care. It’s easy to get down on yourself when you’re rejected for a job but it’s important to keep a positive outlook. The more you let a rejection get you down, the more it will hurt your confidence the next time you go for a job interview. There’s a good chance their choice had nothing to do with you and everything to do with some details you had zero control over. First of all you need to remember that the majority of the time these decisions are not personal. Typically there is simply another candidate who is either more qualified or willing to take lesser pay. If you feel like you had a great interview and a great connection you probably did. Just because you didn’t get the job doesn’t mean you don’t have a great personality and a lot of wonderful professional experiences.
6. Rejection Is Not Feedback
Don’t just assume that everything you’re doing is wrong because you didn’t get the job. It is perfectly acceptable to politely ask the recruiter or employer for more detailed feedback about your interview in order to help you improve. Remember though, interview feedback can sometimes be bland and unhelpful, so do seek out other genuinely useful feedback where possible. You could seek the advice of an HR professional and try out a mock interview in order to practice and get some constructive criticism.
7. Reflect And Improve
Everyone can improve their presentation skills. When you leave a meeting, take your time to think through what you could have done differently. Did you establish rapport? What key “needs” did the prospect have and did you answer how you could meet those? Learn from each deal/interviewl and make mental notes for next time.
8. Ask Questions
Is there something wrong with the proposal that warrant such a decision? You need to find out. If you’re going to actually get your business proposals in front of people, it is important that you learn from things that work and those things that do not. It may seem like a waste of time but it can be precious to you. It portrays you as a person who really cares about your work rather than just someone running after the money. It also helps you understand your sales pitch.
9. Use Subliminal Messages
You can use subliminal messages while you are visualizing. The subliminal messages can be the following:
- I let go of the missed opportunity.
- I am looking forward to more doors opening for me.
- I will definitely succeed very soon.
- This rejection does not change the way I look at myself.
These subliminal messages not only make the visualization exercise more effective but they can also change the way your mind thinks. You will become more open to new possibilities when you embrace the temporary setbacks.
10. Never Bring Up the Past
Once rejected, we tend to relive the situation and discuss it with others when we shouldn’t. Instead of focusing on rejections, try to focus on instances when you’ve succeeded and when your expectations were met. Remembering those positive outcomes will help to boost your morale and should help you to realize that you’re meant for something bigger and better. If you lump this rejection with past rejections/failures you’ll feel overwhelmed and the magnitude of this particular rejection will be magnified unnecessarily. Treat each experience individually and learn to put the past rest.
11. Focus On Your Strengths
Once rejected, it’s very easy to blame yourself and find faults with your resume or even your personality. Don’t beat yourself up just because you’ve been rejected for several jobs. Try to focus on your strengths and identify opportunities that you are passionate about and that passion will shine through in interviews. Remind yourself that you have a lot of marketable qualities. There is always going to be an infinite long list of things that you cannot do, focusing on those things will only get you down. If you focus on what you can do and what it is you can improve on, then you are more likely to make progress in your career.
12. Allow Yourself A Limited Amount Of Time To Grieve
Give the rejection a good cry or a moment of self-pity, whichever is your way of releasing negative emotions. After that however stand up, dust yourself off and move on. There is no reason for you to keep looking back. It is essential to get all the fear, hurt, anger and bitterness out of your system or these feelings could turn into hatred and resentment. It won’t be easy but the faster you get rid of those negative feelings the better it will be for you.
13. Analyze Why The Rejection Occurred
Look for ways to either change that which was rejected or find new avenues where acceptance will be more likely. Most things in life are a numbers game, in that we have to make X amount of tries before we get acceptance. Try to figure out how many number of tries are required before procuring a win. Look at the rejection as bringing you one step closer to hitting that magic number required that will give you acceptance. Not all rejections have sense so you don’t have to fuss about all of them. Identify if the cause of the rejection is something you can fix. For example, if you were not accepted because of lack of experience, you may want to look for volunteer organizations in line with your desired position and get the experience necessary. You can improve your set of skills or choose better references if these were reasons for rejection.
14. Accept The Reality
Learn to accept the truth that rejections happen. You are not the only one and most definitely there are others who have been rejected numerous times in their lives. Accept the reality of the fact that rejections are a natural part of life. This is not the first or last time you will be rejected. Everybody is rejected on various occasions. The more you come to terms with this fact the better suited you’ll be going into future job searches and business negotiations.
15. Take Your Mind Off It
If you feel that the rejections are consuming your mind too much, it’s time to get out more. You can go out with friends, learn a new hobby or even write your thoughts in a journal. Do whatever that will help you release and forget about them.
16.Ask Yourself A Few Questions
What have you learned from this experience?
Is there anything you would have done differently?
Based on what you learned from this experience, how will you handle yourself differently the next time you go through the process of interviewing for a job?
By asking yourself these questions you’re allowing yourself to grow and improve. That is why even a failed job interview is a good experience to have under your belt. The more interviews you’ve had the more your experienced you’ll have to take the next one.
17. Confront Your Fears
What is typically frightening about rejection is usually the humiliation and the feeling that you have been “made a fool of” that accompanies it. Remember that all physical and emotional hurt is just a part of loving and living.
18. Look At The Positive Side
Maybe the person who rejected you was not the best type of partner for you. You could have been saved from a lot of trouble and further heartbreak. Besides, a rejection in the beginning is better than the bitterness of a break-up later on in a relationship. You still have plenty of chances of finding the right partner.
19. Rejection Is No Big Deal
She/He tells you she isn’t your type, so what? Never feign your disappointment or beg for her/him, which is the highest act of desperation. Mope around a little and then move on with life.
20. She’s/He’s Not The Only Girl/Guy Out There.
This represents a serious case of sour-graping but it helps! Tell yourself that there are plenty of fish in the ocean and about a million other available girls/guys who would gladly say yes to your offer. No need to feel totally bad about it. You tried, and that’s cool.
21. Be Cool
Stay calm and collected. Shrug it off and maybe tell her/him that everything’s fine and you hope to catch her/him later. Your composed appearance in a time of rejection makes you even more attractive. The dating game should not be stressful. You’re supposed to be having fun!
22. Respect Her/His Opinion
Sometimes we do have this feeling that when a girl/guy says no, she actually means yes, if that’s what you believe then it’s okay to try again. But when she/he firmly retaliates that she/he doesn’t want to go out with you and says it with a straight face, it’s time to retreat. For now, she/he surely means it.
23. Look Forward To Success
Think of happy thoughts, be sure of yourself and don’t give yourself time to sulk and brood. A person who abandons hope has no chance of achieving their goals.
24. Keep Learning And Developing
Your confidence can take a hit when you experience rejection so it’s important to work hard at keeping your morale and motivation levels buoyant. Especially if you’re not in current employment, it’s a good idea to keep your skills sharpened and your experience up-to-date. This may take the form of a part-time training course (if relevant), a charity project, mentorship or a voluntary position in a company of interest. By keeping professionally active in this way, you can aid ongoing development, boost confidence, give yourself a focus outside your job hunt and provide a discussion point in your next interview.
Final thought Rejections should not be the ultimate cause for you to feel so terrible about yourself, don’t let them define who you are. Remember, success is generally located just beyond the spot of failure. First, find a way to avoid taking the rejection personally so you can deal with the rejection objectively. While rejections most always seem personal, they rarely are.
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