Rejected

There's no way around the fact that rejection sucks. But there are some ways for it to suck a little less.

Hey hopeful romantics,

Have you ever been rejected? Actually, a better question would be, who hasn't been rejected?

Rejection is quite literally part of life.

I remember rejection as early as elementary school. My friend Danielle and I talked about wearing matching shirts to school. The next day, I forgot our plans, and Danielle responded by ignoring me at recess. I had to play with other kids, and while it didn't take long for that sting of rejection to wear off, I was quite hurt for those ten minutes.

Then there was the time I applied for a job at my favorite consignment clothing store. I'd just turned seventeen, which was the minimum age you had to be to work there. I dressed in my cutest outfit, which was probably just a Hollister shirt and skinny jeans.

When I got there, I realized it was a group interview. Nerves overcame me, and I barely talked. But I held out hope while I waited for a call back from them. It came a week later, informing me I hadn't gotten the job.

But those are general life rejections, and there were plenty more that came after my shattered resale dreams.

The kind of rejection that always hurt me the most was dating rejection.

Like when I dated a guy for weeks, and we seemed to hit it off spectacularly. I met his friends and colleagues. We made plans for months out. Then one day, out of the blue, he called to say he was too busy to seriously date. Whomp whomp.

Or that time a friend and I decided to give dating a shot. We went on dates and tried the whole romance thing. Nothing was too serious, but it was nice. But then he called me one day to say we're better off as friends. He wasn’t wrong but the fact he made the move stung a little.

And let’s not forget all the other one-date fails in between.

Dating is a process and it only takes one person to take you off the market. Rejection is bound to happen.

So this week I want to talk about handling rejection, especially if you're a hopeful romantic like I am.


Handling rejection in dating

You can either let rejection control your life or learn to take control of it. I know, that seems pretty wise, but it took me a while to figure that out.

I'll be frank; rejection is always going to suck. As social creatures, the need to be accepted by people makes an, "I'm just not feeling the connection," text a little painful. But there are things we can control; our mindset around rejection and our dating habits.

So let's talk about those:

Don't take it personally.

We take dating extremely personally because it's vulnerable; the first few dates can feel like you're being judged for a contest. After all, you're learning about who each other are and then deciding if you want to move forward. Getting the, "I'm just not feeling it," text would make even the most confident person think there's something wrong with them.

But in all actuality, it's not that there's something wrong with you, it's that you weren't a good match for that person. Or perhaps it really isn't a good time for them to date. Either way, your value doesn't ride on whether all of your dates lead to a successful relationship.

Remember you're not for everyone.

Dating is a process because everyone is learning what they do and don't want from a romantic partner. While you may think your opinionated manner makes you badass, someone might be turned off by someone loud. There's nothing wrong with that character trait; it merely means you're not a good fit for each other.

This applies to life in general, but the moment you realize you can't make everyone like you is the moment you take a bit of power back. Instead of wasting energy on people who don't want to be in your life, focus on the people who do.

Don't date out of vengeance.

You're not doing yourself any favors by dating from a place of, "f*ck them, I deserve better." Usually, that leads to poor judgment or decisions you'll regret. It's great to know you've been wronged and learn from it, but not so great letting that resentment guide you.

Instead, know there is better out there for you. The person that rejected you is but a mere speck in your past. While you don't need to send them a card during the holidays, it doesn't do you any good to hold ill will for them. Release the negativity and move on with your dating life in an authentic way.

Do the work to create a thriving life.

Rejection hurts even more when you believe your life worsens when you lose someone. That or thinking being single means there's something wrong with you. Your romantic life is just the icing on the cake, someone to enjoy your already extraordinary life with.

When you have a life that you love to fall back on, you lessen the blow of rejection. Don't invest all your free time into dating; keep up your hobbies, try new ones, and spend time with friends. Create career goals and spend time doing self-care.

Your dating life should run parallel with the rest of your life, not overtake it.

Talk it out with someone.

Shame is a silent monster that only breeds more evil little shame babies when it's not brought to light. When something hurts you, you need to talk about it out loud. Text a friend or phone up your mom. If someone you're dating does hurt your feelings, let those emotions out.

If rejection feels extremely triggering, seek professional help. Most of the time, events from our past shape the way we handle rejection. When trauma controls our present life, it's best to see a therapist or counselor to work through those feelings.

Trust the process.

Every rejection is simply someone you met who isn't the right person for you. Reflect on your dates, figure out what you did and didn't like, and move on to the next person. If you're not ready for rejection, then you probably aren't ready to date just yet.

You don't need to connect with a ton of people when dating; it only takes one person. Trust that the process of dating —  which includes rejection —  is going to lead you to your person.


Some helpful content…

Beautiful stories about how rejection led to another door opening. Addicted to rejection? Listen to Polly. Funny/awkward stories of rejection to lighten the mood. The science of why it hurts so damn much. Feeling like things might work out after all? Think again.


Announcement: I've launched an advice column with iris Dating, Ask iris. If you want, write-in a question for the chance for me to not only answer it but have it published on their blog, EQ!

Until next week... stay sane & healthy.

All the love,

Kirstie


Book Update:

I'm working on my mood board for my book cover which is fun but also exhausting. I have no idea what I want my cover to look like.

And I'm not even sure where to begin besides the fact that I want it bright but not pink.


Writing Corner:

This little bit is for all of my fellow writers. Did you know I co-host a mastermind for content writers?

It's a community for ambitious writers who want to learn straightforward information on how the business works. We host two events each month: a workshop and live Q&A. Our next event is a workshop on July 17th about building your content writing business.

Interested? Check it out here or email me with questions!


Articles I Wrote:

How To Be a Better Partner With an Avoidant Attachment Style

Are You Addicted To Dating Drama?

Why The Slow Fade Is Just As Bad As Ghosting

Content I Loved:

'Is an Open Relationship With My Ex a Bad Idea?'

Life After Lust

As He Cut My Hair, I Wept

17 Totally Normal Things to Experience in Your Relationship Right Now