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  • Sunday Sanctuary

How To Handle Rejection

Rejection stings. It hurts your ego, feelings, and opens the door to self doubt. Being told 'no' invites in the idea that you didn't quite meet someone's standard, and this thought process can be heartbreaking. Learning how to handle feelings of rejection without letting them overwhelm you, and more importantly continuing on to what you set out to do, is at the heart of conquering what every human on Earth has had to experience at some point in their lives.

We've all experienced rejection; whether from a love interest, a job prospect, or even within a friendship. At the heart of it, rejection is the notion that we've put ourselves out there to be judged, and someone said it didn't meet their standards. It's easy for the immediate follow up thought to be 'I'm not good enough', but we've explored how to turn this thinking around, and why it simply isn't true.

Accept The Pain

When we're faced with negative emotions we tend to go one of two ways; give into it entirely, or bottle it up. Neither approach is healthy, but allowing yourself to feel the pain of rejection and validating those feelings is important if you want to move on. Being aware of how and why you feel the way you do, and examining feelings of rejection can speed up the process of getting over the hurt, but making sure that you don't wallow is also crucial for it to be healthy.

Recognise Growth

Putting yourself out there is a big move. Stepping out of your comfort zone is a sign you're already growing - whether the outcome is positive or negative. It's easy to take rejection as a sign that you should retreat back into your shell, but you have to make an effort to pull yourself out of this train of thought; the fact you left your comfort zone in the first place is a sign that you're ready to level up.

Practice Self-Care

Being kind to yourself not only helps ease negative thought patterns, but it serves as a reminder that we deserve love and kindness - especially when things go wrong. Intentionally making your mind and body feel good when you're feeling low may not make the emotions disappear, but a good meal, a warm bath, and time with loved ones can sure remind of us of all the great things we have going on outside of one rejection.

Stop Negative Self-Talk

We treat ourselves worse than we treat anyone else, and rejection can bring out a real beast. Telling yourself you're stupid, unworthy, or incompetent is not only untrue, but also causes your pain spiral further out of control. Becoming aware of negative thought patterns is the first step - and whilst you may not be able to stop them entirely, countering a negative thought with a positive one can help you slowly unlearn your brain's immediate response to rejection.

Take The Opportunity To Learn

Do not let rejection define your self-worth, instead take the opportunity to learn from mistakes and use them to strengthen your armour the next time you enter a similar situation. And remember, what someone else perceives as a flaw, someone else might find endearing - so taking an objective step back to assess whether the criticism was constructive or unfounded is important to making sure you're growing in the right direction.

Final Note

Although rejection can feel isolating, keep in mind that it's something we've all experienced. The candidate that was offered the job when you weren't had probably been rejected more than a handful of times before they heard a yes; the love interest who shot you down has almost definitely experienced heartbreak themselves. Working on not taking rejection personally, and reminding yourself of your previous achievements won't take the sting away entirely, but it'll help you grow into an even better version of the person you were before.


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