Whether you were excluded from a social engagement, or you were passed up for a promotion, rejection hurts. The way you choose to respond to rejection, however, could determine the entire course of your future.
Many people isolate themselves or hold back from connecting with others because they’re afraid of being rejected. Fear of or sensitivity to rejection might often contribute to pre-existing conditions such as stress and anxiety or lead to their development. Similarly, these and other mental health conditions can exacerbate feelings of rejection.
There any various forms of rejection, it can start after being denied a date or broken up with, if an individual is bullied or alienated in school, the workplace or within a group of friends. Rejection may also occur from one's family, via abandonment or neglect. The repercussions of rejection can cause someone to pull away from others triggering chronic feelings of loneliness, depression and social anxiety. Heightened rejection sensitivity is also common in many people with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
However, have you ever notice how being turned down stops some people from trying again, while others bounce back from rejection stronger than before? Everyone experiences the sting of rejection, but becoming mentally strong can allow you to use that pain to grow stronger and combat anxiety.
Below we have highlighted 6 ways to learn to love rejection:
1. Acknowledge Emotions
Rather than suppress, ignore, or deny the pain induced from rejection, acknowledge your emotions. Admit when you are embarrassed, sad, disappointed, or discouraged. Have confidence in your ability to deal with uncomfortable emotions head-on, which is essential to coping with discomfort in a healthy manner.
Whether you've been stood up by a date or turned down for a promotion, rejection stings. Trying to minimise the pain by convincing yourself--or someone else--it was "no big deal" will only prolong your pain. The best way to deal with uncomfortable emotions is to face them head-on, learn to love rejection and welcome it as a form of learning, as proof you are living life to the fullest.
Expect rejected to rear its head occasionally, but don't let yourself be afraid. If you never get rejected, you may be living too far inside your comfort zone. You can't be sure you're pushing yourself to your limits until you get turned down every now and then. When you get rejected for a project, passed up for a job, or turned down by a friend, you'll know you're putting yourself out there.
2. Have Compassion For Yourself
Rather than think, "You're so stupid for thinking you could do that," treat yourself with compassion. Respond to negative self-talk with a kinder, more affirming message. Whether you got dumped by your long-term love or blindsided by a recent firing, beating yourself up will only keep you down. Speak to yourself like a trusted friend. Drown out your harsh inner critic by repeating helpful mantras that will keep you mentally strong.
3. Rejection Is Not Personal
Think, rejection is not about me. Rejection is a life situation that happens to everyone. Don't make sweeping generalisations once being rejected. If one person turns you down, don't declare yourself unloveable, keep rejection in perspective. One person's opinion, or one single incident, should never define who you are. Don't let your self-worth depend upon other people's opinions of you. Just because someone else thinks something about you, doesn't mean it's true.
4. Guilt Free Zone
Ask yourself, "What did I gain from this?" so you can learn from rejection. Rather than simply tolerate the pain, turn it into an opportunity for self-growth. With each rejection, grow stronger and become better. Whether you learn about areas in your life that need improvement, or you simply recognise that being turned down isn't as awful as you imagined, rejection can be a good teacher. Use rejection as an opportunity to move forward with more wisdom. Have no shame or guilt for letting an unhealthy situation go, or for being the one to be rejected. Those of us who suffer shame have it harder, as shame keeps us isolated, making it so much more difficult to heal or seek help.
5. All Endings Are Also Beginnings
Rejection is never personal. Our connotation of the word rejection has become negative. But it can be turned upside down quite easily. Look at it as liberation from an untenable situation. This is absolutely true. Someone saying “no” means one hundred “yes” responses will be coming our way, think of "no" as a temporary gateway to "yes!" Send positive energy, kindness and compassion to the naysayers because it all comes back to us.
6. Not Everyone We Loose Is A Loss
Not everyone or everything we lose is a loss. Some people or things are a small part of our life journey and there to teach us something important. Most of the time individuals get hurt because they gave away their power. There are very few situations that have the power to hurt you, you have to give it to them.
When it comes to relationships, remember: It’s much better to be "rejected" than to be with someone who is not 100% committed. Rejection means that we have been freed from a situation that was not a good fit for us and we can now prepare for one that is better.
It's unrealistic to think that rejection will not bother you anymore, however, the aim is to recover quicker from rejections. Give yourself time to grieve, heal and be human, but rather than be too hard on yourself, nourish yourself and take control of any future anxiety.
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