Nobody wants to deal with any of these, but if you’re a human adult, you’ve certainly encountered all of these things and probably taken them a bit too personally a time or two. If you’re me, you have become intimately familiar with each one of them, like a trio of sister-wives.
Based on my experimentation with thoughts and actions which serve only to exacerbate the painful feelings of rejection and failure, here are some recommendations from my personal experience of getting nowhere by doing the opposite. In no particular order…
Avoid sweeping generalizations – one event does not define you, your response does.
It’s tempting to just throw your hands up and stop trying because “no one will ever date/love/hire/notice you again because you’re not good/ young/ pretty/ thin/ smart/ strong enough”. I battle this constantly. It’s human nature to look for the reasons things happen, but there are some answers you’ll never know. Blaming it on something about yourself that most likely IS good enough and that you can’t change is bullshit.
Don’t take it personally. Be gentle with yourself.
You don’t know what other people have going on and chances are, the story you’re telling yourself isn’t even close to the truth. Leave the drama for the real housewives and just make the assumption that it has nothing to do with you. I get it, it’s still about you, it fucking hurts, but it’s not because something is innately wrong with you. Have some compassion for yourself and talk to yourself like you’d talk to a friend.
Re-frame and consider the upside.
So you failed – that invariably means you’re trying something new or pushing yourself outside of your comfort zone. As all the inspirational memes have taught us, life begins at the end of your comfort zone. #blessed Good for you, you’re out there getting after it!
So s/he rejected you – maybe s/he has a hot body, but maybe s/he also has wit as sharp as an earthworm. Can you really imagine wasting even one hour of your precious life with someone who can’t make you laugh? Seriously.
It’s okay to feel disappointed and even let yourself wallow for a short period of time. Let yourself feel it, process it, and move on. Keep in mind, the quicker you let yourself feel it, the quicker you can move on. I don’t know… maybe go hit the trails?
What can you learn?
I know. This one is the worst. In the heat of the disappointment, the last damn thing you want to hear is how you can do more work focused on your failure. But as soon as the ugly feelings pass, if you’re like me, you can’t help but do this. Just be honest with yourself and identify what is within your control to change. Maybe it’s nothing you need to do anything about, maybe he’s just into big boobs.
Warning: hilarious but explicit language in video below