How To Handle Rejection Like A Boss (& Not Get Stuck In A Shame-Spiral)

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How to Deal with Rejection
Heartbreak, Self

Rejection is inevitable. How you choose to deal with it is variable.

Rejection sucks. Pure and simple. No one likes rejection and it is a foregone conclusion that we all will experience the pain of it many times in the course of our lives.

We experience in love, work, parenting, friendships. Rejection is inevitable — but how you choose to deal with rejection is variable.

Many times, rejection is tolerable simply because the rejecting person is not that important to us. But when the source of rejection is someone who really matters, we may struggle with bouncing back, especially if we are dealing with a broken heart.

RELATED: The Truth About Why People Keep Rejecting You (And What You Can Do About It)

Here are some thoughts on rejection:

1. You can still be okay. 

Remember that being okay is an inside job. One person's opinion does not equal God's truth. Just stay focused on your opinion of yourself.

Do you like who you are? If the answer is "yes", move on. If the answer is "no", you have some work to do.

2. It might be about them and not about you (or your acceptability).

Some people need to put other's down to build themselves up. That speaks to their insecurities, not to your level of attractiveness.

If you must speak up, you can respond to this type of person with something like, "I respect your insight, but I see it a little differently."

3. They might be doing you a favor, but you don't see past your emotional pain and forget to consider that.

Rejection either provides you with something or protects you from something. Be patient, breathe through it, and you might be surprised to find out later that being rejected was a blessing in disguise.

RELATED: 10 Scary Ways Rejection Messes With Your Mind

4. They may be providing you with an opportunity to take your own inventory and grow.

Rather than hooking into self-pity, respectfully ask for more information so that you can incorporate the feedback into healthy behaviors. 

5. They may feel anxious about some aspect of your behavior and feel resistant to address it.

Don't be afraid to ask if there is something you can work on to help the other to feel more comfortable around you.

If they truly matter to you and their request is realistic, why not? Check in with them periodically to see if things are improving.

6. The sadness you feel about it will diminish with a little time and patience — if you simply allow yourself feel it.  

Sadness, unlike depression, contributes to the passion of living and is a legitimate feeling. It is also self-limited in that it has a beginning and an end. You can feel sad and live to tell the tale.

The biggest challenge around being rejected is the tendency to reject yourself when it happens. This is when sadness devolves into depression and anger turns on oneself. Don't add insult to injury by cowering in the face of feedback that may be hard to take. 

Resilience, the ability to bounce back in the face of adversity, is strengthened every time you positively navigate through rejection. The more resilient you are, the more risks you will be willing to take because you know you can handle almost any outcome.

As you build your resilience, you increase your confidence and enhance your self-image. That is a good thing!

Also, experiencing rejection helps to develop compassion and empathy when you need to be rejecting of others. You will be very mindful of how you deliver a rejecting communication because you have constructive experience with being rejected and prevailing. 

You may have your own excellent thoughts on how to handle rejection. Yes, rejection sucks, but you can use it to build character and emotional fitness. Make it work for you, not against you.

RELATED: The Real Reason Rejection Hurts So Damn Much (And How To Cope)

Ellie Izzo is the creator of Sentbeat, an innovative APP for enhancing emotional intelligence. She can be reached by email at

This article was originally published at Reprinted with permission from the author.