Rejection is a part of life, but it’s not easy — in fact, it may just be one of the most painful experiences you’ll ever have. When you’re rejected by a company, a group of friends, or a crush, it’s pretty brutal. As difficult as it can be, the best way to handle any rejection is to take a deep breath and maintain your dignity. In fact, doing so may just make those who rejected you rethink their original decision. So how do you keep your cool?
- Above all, don’t do anything desperate or overly emotional. If you want to know the easiest way to become the least attractive person in a room, be the one who bursts into tears or lashes out after being rejected. By begging, pleading, or making desperate moves to attract attention to yourself, you’re going to repel people even more. Doing this will only cement and reaffirm their decision to reject you, so don’t lose your cool in front of them. If you have to, walk away and go somewhere to breathe.
- If it’s applicable in the situation, ask what you could have done differently. Many people won’t want to explain why they’re rejecting you, but if they’re willing to tell you why, you should listen. There may be something you can do to improve yourself or your situation. However, don’t try to argue with them over their decision, because it’ll only make them uncomfortable and you look bad.
- Take time to recover from the emotional blow. Rejection hurts like a jerk. Once you’re able to do so, spend some time alone and cry it out. Vent to a friend or family member if you need to. Rejection hurts, so take a day or two off if you need to. If it’s a really bad rejection, talk to a therapist. After a while, you’ll need to get back out there again, so try and get it out of your system as soon as possible.
- Improve yourself. The best revenge you can get on someone who rejected you is to show them what they missed out on. If you know why you were rejected, improve upon that aspect of you. If the reason that they rejected you was petty (like a Queen Bee viewing you as a threat), then by all means, make sure to get even better. Nothing quite makes people rethink their decisions like seeing a person succeed without them.
- Don’t get smug down the line. As much as it may be difficult to do, don’t rub the new improvements in your life in other people’s faces. This actually comes off as desperate, and proves to others that they still have the power to hurt you through rejection. The fact is that the improvements that you make to your life will have the most impact when people find out about it on their own accord.
- Try not to be bitter, especially when you’ve been rejected multiple times. This is extremely difficult at times, primarily because it’s hard not to be bitter when you’re constantly being rejected. If you’re noticing that you’re getting increasingly bitter about some aspect of your life, it might be time to consider looking into other options or quitting that aspect of your life altogether. Being bitter about rejection isn’t going to to help you at all, so try to let go of it as soon as possible.
- Don’t take rejection personally. This is hard to do, because all rejection tends to feel like the person or group is rejecting you as a person. The truth is that most rejections aren’t doing that at all; they’re just rejecting a quality that doesn’t mesh well with what they’re looking for.
- Keep the door open for the future. Be the bigger person. People do change their minds about the company that they keep. If you’ve been rejected by a group, you may want to offer them a second chance down the line if they’re worth it. After all, people do occasionally come to their senses.
Though it may not feel like it, rejection isn’t the end of the world. In fact, it’s not even always the end of the relationship. As long as you maintain your dignity, you’ll end up being stronger in the long run.