We’ve all been there — in our heads overthinking why we were just rejected. Rejection of any form is very tough to handle. It’s hard on the heart, ego, and confidence. No matter how much of “thick skin” you think you may have, being rejected will always give you a little sting. And that’s okay.
I am here to help. Rejection can come from really anywhere, however, let’s focus on rejection in the work world. Note, you can apply these tips and tricks to any form of rejection. This is how I’d go about it...
It’s Okay To Feel Bad About Rejection
The first thing to do when you’re in the moment of your rejection (an idea being shot down in a brainstorm, an interview decline, or even a missed chance at a really great internship), remember that it is okay and normal to feel that punch in your gut. Handle this moment with grace — you can cry about it later. Remain calm and make sure that your response, in any form, is respectful, reasonable, and responsible. Meaning, refrain from replying with a heated comment or a “woe is me” mentality.
Try to Understand
The second step is to try and understand the situation as best as you can. Internally, assess how you could have improved your performance. Recall if there was anything that you could have done just a little bit better. Additionally, take the time to think about what the other person or company wanted. It could have simply been that it wasn't a good idea, or you just weren't what they were looking for. That’s okay too — don't take it personally. All being said, remember to take responsibility for your actions as well. If you know that you could have done better or tried harder, note that and try harder next time.
Learn From The Situation
The third and final step is to learn from the situation and grow. Keep building your confidence up even though rejection is very discouraging. Take each situation with a grain of salt. You’re still amazing. Keep confidence in your words and thoughts, those are valuable even if they weren’t “the best” the first time around. You’ve got this. Keep your head up.
Don’t take it personally — unless you know you should
Breathe — it will be okay
React with respect and dignity
Ella Rechner is an adverting and public relations major with a minor writing. She is currently the VP of programming for PRSSA. She loves to spend her time drawing and watching movies.