How many times in your life have you heard the word “no”? How many times have you said “no” to someone else? Even yourself? Does that mean you are not enough? Does that mean that someone else was unworthy?
In this instance, the answer is a resounding “NO.”
There are many types of rejection that we can experience in our lives, be it family, friends, romance, or professional – to touch upon some. Why is this idea of rejection so difficult for us to accept? Why do we automatically associate worthlessness or negative feelings with others not returning our feelings – regardless of the situation – with rejection?
The base of our self-esteem is built through feedback, both positive and negative. The negative feedback is associated with rejection which is the counterpoint of our sense of belonging. We, naturally, are a curious species that questions everything from our purpose for existing to wondering what is out there beyond our current world. Our imagination creates our hopes and dreams, we get our hearts set on this world that we create and then when we hear “no,” it can be incredibly devastating.
In this mass of emotions, confusion, and negativity, how do we handle rejection? We tell ourselves that better things are waiting but how do we cope with the hurt that we feel when we give someone or something our all but are not chosen in the end? Is it a job? Is it a friendship? Is it a family relationship? Is it a breakup? How do we regain our confidence after faltering in our steps?
Consider this as you struggle to regain your self-esteem and self-worth:
This doesn’t mean that you ignore everything that happened, it means that you take a step back from the issue. Are you in a bad work environment? Is it someone who feels like they are “the ONE”?
Taking that moment for yourself can help you notice that each place has its issues or you may have changed yourself for this person. Is it worth it?
- Treat yourself how you would treat a friend
Do you know who your worst critic is? Surprise! It’s you. The things we say to
ourselves are not close to what we would say to a friend or a stranger – not even close. Self-compassion is the key here. Nurture yourself as you would a friend, focus on your strengths, remind yourself of your talents, empower yourself to continue moving forward.
- Learn from the experience
This might be the hardest part because to get to this stage you need to work
through the negative feelings. We become the best versions of ourselves by the different experiences, both good and bad, that we have in our day to day lives. Working with a professional can be a great help to challenge the negative self-talk and beliefs about yourself into something more positive, or at least neutral.
If all you heard was “yes” from everyone in your life, would you have the skills to face challenges? Would you be able to plan out how to reach your goals? Would you even have a true version of self-confidence if you never encounter trouble or do anything wrong?
Honestly, the truth is that rejection is inevitable. If you look at “successful” people, they have all experienced some sort of rejection in their lives and they use it to grow into more motivated people who work towards success. While those who may not be as successful may end up having that experience define them and their aspirations. Allow yourself the opportunity to grow and achieve your goals.