10 tips on how to bounce back from rejection
We wouldn’t be human if we were not affected in one way or the other by our setbacks. Being able to adapt to challenges, cope with adversity and recover from difficulties is a skill many of us wish to have. Here are some tips to help you build your RESILIENCE.
R Reflect on your performance objectively. What worked? What went wrong? What needs improving? If you could do it again, what would you do differently? Setbacks can feel personal, so staying objective and looking at things from the observer’s perspective can help you see things rationally and logically, without getting emotional.
E End goal Keep your eyes on the prize and keep going. Don’t lose sight of your goal and what matters to you because if it really matters, you will find the strength and motivation to achieve it. Most highly-successful people failed on numerous occasions before they accomplished their goals. What often determines their success is the refusal to give up when they face obstacles; instead they find a way to overcome them. Knowing what it is you aspire to achieve and wanting it with every part of your body will help you carry on when things get tough.
S Strengths – When things are not going our way, it is easy to concentrate on negatives and our weaknesses. In those moments arises the perfect opportunity to remind yourself about your strengths and triumphs and acknowledge your progress, however small it may be. Draw on your strong points, be kind to yourself, challenge your negative thinking and remember that if you have been resourceful before, you have it in you to be resourceful again.
I Internal dialog – What do you say to yourself when you don’t succeed or get rejected? Is your language positive and encouraging or negative, unhelpful and demotivating? Language and the words you use really matter as they impact how you feel and how you behave so pay attention to your language and chose your words wisely.
L Learning – What did you learn from the experience that you can use in the future? How can you use this knowledge to your advantage? Life throws lessons at us every day and sometimes the more we know, the more we realise how little we know which can be overwhelming. Learning never ends...just remember, “Rome wasn’t built in a day”.
I Interrupt the negative cycle – Stress and worry are caused by how we perceive a situation, not the situation itself. The choice of how you respond to a situation will determine your outcome. Let’s say you don’t get the job you interviewed for. If you respond by thinking you failed, you are not good enough, the way you will feel will be negative and hinder your confidence. If, however, you decide to respond more rationally by saying, for example, that although you were not successful, having an interview was good practice so I will be better prepared in the future or that there might have been other candidates who were more experienced etc, the way you feel about the situation will not be as negative as in the first scenario. In order to get out of the negative cycle, something needs to change, the cycle needs to be broken. Build awareness of your beliefs about a situation, because they will determine your action and results.
E Expectations – Are your expectations realistic? What are the gaps (in your knowledge, experience etc.) you need to address? What / who is preventing you from achieving your goal? If your expectations are realistic, you are more likely to achieve your goals therefore have more confidence and motivation to take action.
N Network of people Think about the people around you. Who are your drainers and who are your fillers? Who do you need to see less? Who in your circle of acquaintances do you respect and would like to learn from? Surround yourself with people who support you and have positive impact on you, rather than those who drain your energy. Having someone who you can bounce ideas off and someone you can talk to can really help when you feel down.
C Count your blessings and practice gratitude. No matter how bad your situation is, there is always someone out there who is in a much worse situation than you are. Always! Look at it this way; there are people out there who wish they had your problems and your bad days. Rather than concentrating on how unlucky and unfortunate you are, take time to remind yourself how lucky you really are.
E Evaluate – Thinking about all the above tips, as well your own ideas, ask yourself: If you were going to do one thing that would help you feel better about your situation, what would it be? What would you do if you knew you could not fail?
I would like to leave you with this final thought by the great Ralph Waldo Emerson: “Don’t be pushed by your problems. Be led by your dreams”.