Dealing with rejection

Thursday, 18 April 2019

As individuals, we often fear rejection.

When we see the words ‘We regret to inform you your application has been unsuccessful’ or ‘We were impressed with your experience, however unfortunately at this time….’ No matter how it is dressed up, rejection undermines your confidence, makes you doubt your worth, makes us feel as if we have let people down, acts as an obstacle for going out and pursuing future opportunities as we will always have our rejection in the back of our mind. And quite often, there is often a lack of understanding as to why we’ve been rejected.



Being rejected whether it is in work, friendships hurts. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t give up at the first hurdle - that hurdle being rejection.

There are two ways to look at it. The first being that you’re not good enough for the or we didn’t try hard enough or we weren’t likeable. However, this is not the case the majority of times. The second being the fact this one instance of rejection can actually be good for us.

It could perhaps be an issue of timing or that there of the opponent wasn’t great or there is another (better) opportunity out there which is why we got rejected and we often fail to think of these at the first stages, instead focusing and antagonising on what was wrong with us as individuals (to answer that briefly…. absolutely nothing ‘hun’)

As the classic saying goes, the first reason not to give up at the first stage of rejection is because there is there is something better waiting for you (cliché I know).

There are so many situations in life whether its career related or elsewhere when you don’t get your way and initially experience feelings of upset, disappointment and maybe anger but then much later down the line you realise that you it wasn’t as good as you initially thought and that if you had been successful, it would’ve been a letdown. So, let’s all thank our lucky stars that we were rejected from some things.

The fact is, you are not going to be successful in everything you do. Some of the most successful people in business, arts, politics, fashion and other industries have all had knock backs and the odd obstacle they have had to overcome. To highlight a few; queen of film, Meryl Streep was 26 years old when she auditioned for a role in King Kong, didn’t get the role and was called ugly by the producer. Stephen King’s first book was rejected by 30 publishers, now a highly recognised author. Anna Wintour was fired from her position as fashion editor at Harper’s Bazaar, nine months after she’d been hired. Like what these individuals have done, by accepting that occasionally there will be the defeat and rejection, that makes us bounce back faster, harder with resiliency and persistence.

By giving up after a rejection, we are subconsciously taking it personally. When in the majority of cases, it’s not you – it’s them. We need to stop thinking we’re not good enough and start understanding the we often get rejected because the person or organisation we are applying to work for is focused on gaining different things, different skills, different people, different timings.

Being rejected also provides the perfect opportunity to ask why you weren’t selected and improve on these areas for future openings. In today’s economic environment, job openings are usually oversubscribed however, if you have progressed to one of the final stages, it is more than appropriate to request feedback. Asking why you did not get the job can help you assess into what you are not suited towards and highlight all the things you are great at. Or on more practical terms, helps you drill down into realise that you need to be answering a certain question differently or just simply alter your body language yourself in a slightly different manner. To hone the steps in obtaining your dream job that is both rewarding and fulfilling.

A job rejection at first may always seem like the world is crashing and burning but it’s important to remember by not giving up and letting rejection defeat you - it provides new opportunities and is all part of that journey towards finding your dream job!

How do you deal with rejection? 

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