Growing up, I hated the feeling or even the possibility of rejection, because it felt like I was disappointing or burdening someone. Like I wasn’t worthy enough of their time or attention. But that’s not what rejection is. Rejection doesn’t mean someone doesn’t like you or your ideas.
Maybe they have too many things on their plate. Maybe they’re learning to say no more and set healthier boundaries for themselves. Maybe they’re not interested at the moment.
Sometimes, you just don’t know. And trying to pinpoint the reason every time rejection happens is going to drive you crazy.
If I could give my younger self a piece of advice, it would be this: Rejection is a good thing. Because rejection means you’re showing up. Rejection means you’re trying, and that’s always a good thing. Rejection isn’t something to feel ashamed about.
And because I see so many women afraid of even the possibility of rejection, I wanted to give you share with you 8 ways rejections helps us grow and makes us stronger.
8 ways rejection helps you grow and makes you stronger
1. You’re showing up to the party.
Most people don’t ever show up and put themselves out there because of their fear of rejection. They’re scared that what they say isn’t good enough or valuable enough or worthy enough. Because when you put yourself out there, there’s a good chance that you’re going to mess up (we all do and it’s really just a part of life) and you’re going to be imperfect.
So maybe you don’t land your first client on the first call or even the tenth call, but if you keep showing up and getting better, you will eventually. Keep going.
2. You learn and make better mistakes next time.
Trying not to ever make a mistake is a mistake in itself, and I use to live life this way (and by “live", I mean not to do anything at all because I was so terrified of making one). But rejection teaches you how to improve your craft for the next time around; it shows you what’s working and what’s not in your life, so you can do better and be better.
If you ask me now, I want to make mistakes. The more mistakes, the better - because then I’ll learn to change my ways and stop being so stubborn.
3. You become more patient and kind with yourself.
When you’re first learning to be okay with rejection, it’s going to knock you down hard. Chances are, you’re probably going to feel like nothing is working out for you and “nothing will ever work out for you”.
So you have to learn to be kinder to yourself. Because you can’t hate your way into love and abundance. You can’t beat yourself up and expect yourself to keep going. If you’re impatient and mean to yourself, you’re probably going to give up pretty quickly.
(Related: 5 ways to fall in love with yourself)
4. You learn to prioritize and get better at energy management.
So instead of thinking everything is important and needs to be done right now, you know what your focus is, what your priorities are, and you do them. You stop jumping around from thing to thing, thinking that there’s a magic solution or pathway.
Instead, you work on getting better at your craft and refine, refine, and refine some more until you’re better at it. When you get rejected, it’s a good idea to ask yourself why, what you can do better next time, and how you can do better.
5. You communicate better with others and yourself.
Maybe you’re hesitant to bring something up or rock someone’s boat, but communication is a part of life - and it’s a pretty important one at that. If you want something, you have to ask and you have to be brave enough to ask.
And we have to realize that sometimes we get rejected because we weren’t communicate clearly enough and that’s on us. But that’s an opportunity for you to get better at communicating with others. Don’t think of it as a weakness, think of it as an opportunity to get better at something.
6. You become resilient and better at dealing with things as they come up.
The difference between people who succeed and people who don’t is that the people in the second category give up. They stop trying. They get scared. And this isn’t me placing any judgment on them, because I’ve been there and sometimes I still go there.
But if you want to succeed, if you want to make your dreams a reality, if you want to show up for your tribe - you have to learn to be okay with rejection. You have to be okay with making mistakes, with not everyone liking you, and with people not even caring. Because the truth is: When you first show up, chances are people aren’t going to care. They’re going to start caring and noticing once they start seeing consistency, value, and your passion.
7. You learn to detach yourself from the outcome.
Sometimes, things are going to work out. Sometimes, things aren’t going to work out when you thought they were. But trying to control every single little thing is going to drive you absolutely insane. Trust me, I know. I love feeling like I’m in control of everything, but you can’t be in control of everything.
You can’t pretend or assume how other people are going to react or if they’re going to reject at all. Your next move shouldn’t be dependent on what others do or say, and if you function that way, you’re not going to stay in the game for very long because your emotions are going to go up and down and in all the directions.
8. You start seeing things from other people’s perspective than just your own.
Life isn’t all about you, and the truth is most people are too busy thinking about themselves and their own to do lists. So don’t go blowing your rejection out of the water, because it’s really not that big of a deal.
Like I said at the beginning of the post, people have their own things going on. Maybe they have a lot of things on their plate right now. Maybe they’re waiting on someone else and there’s more than just them involved. Maybe the timing isn’t right. There are so many factors, and you’ll lose your sanity trying to control every outcome. Do the work on your part (refining your process, bettering your craft, etc.) and let go of the things that are outside of your control.
Remember, rejection happens to everyone.
Look at all the people you admire who are successful. They’ve been rejected soooo many times in their life. There’s probably a ton of people out there who doesn’t like them just …because.
But who cares? It’s only a big deal when we make something a big deal.
You’ve got this.