How to Handle Rejection
So you met someone that you have a fat crush on, and you go out of your way to ask them out. Good for you. If we are honest, dating in your 20’s is a numbers game. I’m a fond believer that there is no such thing as “the one.” Instead, you make “the one.” There are definitely people you are more compatible with, but no one is perfect. If you think they are perfect, then you are suffering from what I call the Gatsby Effect but that is a whole other thing. Back to the topic at hand, so you ask someone out, and they say no, what do you do?
Well, first things first. NO means NO. It doesn’t mean “keep pursuing me, and I might change my mind.” I think that is more of a guy thing. I don’t know what it is about us testosterone-filled, egotistical creatures, but when we hear the word no we take it as a challenge. Like we have some amazing persuasive power that will talk women out of what they want. (You can’t see it but I’m rolling my eyes. Men – am I right?)
Moving on can be hard for some, but time is one potent drug that can help us all move on. I know it sounds cliché but time does heal all wounds. (Am I sounding melodramatic? Sorry.) If you gotta do the whole watch a sappy movie while eating ice cream thing, then do it. Escapism is a very real thing. For me, it’s usually while I have my nose in a book. Reading, watching, experiencing a fictional character go through something that you have gone through can be extremely cathartic. It makes you feel not so alone – like there is someone out there that understands what you are feeling. (Yup, my inner emo kid has come out.) Music also helps. Listening to Queen Ari belt out notes that I can only dream about hitting while seeing signs about moving on from previous exes and learning from her past to better her future is like medicine for the soul. The greatest way I get over rejection is writing about it. Try it. Be honest with yourself. Let your inner emo kid out. No reason to hold back or feel ashamed. No one else is going to read it. And if you want to be super melodramatic, burn the paper after you’re done. But whatever you do, DO NOT dwell on the rejection. Don’t sit there for days on end asking yourself “why”? That person said no. Not because there is something wrong with you, but because they did not view you the same way you viewed them and that’s okay.
All this also doesn’t have to be related to asking someone out. Didn’t get into the school you wanted? Or make a sports team you tried out for? It’s fine. Rejection is a part of life. You are going to hear more no’s in your life then you will hear yes’. You just got to learn to get past it and learn from it. Let the no’s fuel the fire for your eventual success.
Jose-Andres Alegria is an intern at Family Bridges who does whatever the boss tells him to do, but if he can’t be found it usually means that his face is buried in a book somewhere or that he is taking a nap and you should come back later when he’s not “busy”.
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