7 Steps for Coping With Rejection

Here's how to stop it getting the best of you...

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Is there a worse emotion than the feeling of rejection? Personally, I don't think there is.

Naturally, grief comes pretty close. That sense that you have lost someone or something forever is overwhelming, and literally takes your breath away. But often when those close to us die, we know that they did so while loving us. When we are rejected, we have no such consolation. We feel bereft, useless, unwanted, discarded and isolated. These are horrible feelings – and if you are experiencing any of them right now, my heart goes out to you.

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Most commonly, we feel rejected when a romantic relationship comes to an end. And losing a job or being made redundant can also generate a terrible sense of being unwanted.

Here are some ways to deal with the awful, gut-wrenching feelings you might be experiencing right now.

7 ways to get over it

1. Open up

Talk about your rejection. Don't keep this to yourself. Phone a friend. Go and stay with someone you love and trust. Open up to a colleague, or to someone you know has gone through a similar experience. Communicating your upset, shock and distress to others will help you to deal with it.

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And by talking things through, you will not only feel stronger – but the sense of rejection will gradually lose its power over you.

2. Let others help

Let other people look after you and give you hugs and tempt you with nice food. You would do this for someone else – so allow others to take care of you.

3. Don't be so hard on yourself

Don't push yourself too hard. You may be having to go out to work despite your heartache, or be busy with children or studying, but you really need to build periods of rest into your routine. You are shocked and saddened and your body and mind require time to recover.

4. Find time to laugh

Build some laughter into your schedule. Read some amusing articles online. Or carve out half an hour a day to watch a comedy or listen to a podcast that always makes you giggle. Humour restores us to normality.

5. Do a good deed

Do three useful things daily for other people. You might find this quite a challenge when you are feeling so bereft yourself. But the fact is that it will really help you to be reminded that you are a decent and a kind person.

It's true that you've been rejected – but you need to appreciate that you are full of goodness. You are not a bad individual just because someone else doesn't want you. So, do charitable things for others – maybe buy a Big Issue, smile at someone who looks sad on the bus, or make a donation to a refugee charity. When we extend kindness to others, we feel better about ourselves.

6. Remember the positives

Every day, make a note of something about yourself that you like. Again this gets you focusing on your good and positive points rather than what you perceive to be your failure.

7. Give mindfulness a go

Finally, try mindfulness. It's a very useful strategy when life and our emotions overwhelm us.

I am sorry that you are suffering this rejection. It's awful for you, but you will recover. As the old cliché goes: 'time is a great healer'. This is so true – as millions of other people have found. And one day, it will be true of you and your situation too.

What do you think?

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