This week I heard a toddler's favorite word a few more times than I would have liked. I know we've all been there; we didn't get the job we wanted, we got dumped, we didn't get into the program we wanted to, whatever it might be, we got rejected. It's inevitable that sometime in our lives, or even frequently in our lives, we will fail at something, or someone will tell us NO.
Getting rejected sucks because it usually involves putting yourself on the line, which makes you feel vulnerable and that can be SO uncomfortable. I hate feeling like this, so I've developed a few strategies to reframe rejection into something positive.
- Anytime you feel uncomfortable, it means you are growing. Growth is uncomfortable, but you know what else? Growth is AWESOME. Growth = progress. Growth = momentum. Growth = not staying the same, and who wants to stay the same? Not me, that's super boring. If you keep this in mind anytime you feel uncomfortable, you will start to look for the lesson or the opportunity at hand.
- Don't take it personally. A few years ago I read a book that changed my life called The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz. One of my favorite quotes from the book goes like this: "Don't Take Anything Personally. Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won't be the victim of needless suffering." It's definitely easier said than done, but if you try to stay present to the idea, you will save yourself from hurt feelings.
- Ask yourself: what am I being re-directed to? One of my favorite quotes to share in yoga class is from Steve Maraboli, and he said "As I look back on my life, every time I thought I was being rejected from something good, I was actually being re-directed to something better." It's so true! If I didn't have my heart shattered into a million pieces by my high school sweetheart, I would have never been redirected to my current husband who is the love of my life! I can think of countless other examples. If you take a moment to look back on your life, you can start to see all the good that came out of the "bad."
- Channel telemarketers that do cold calls and literally get rejected 100's of times a day. They don't give up now do they? They don't even flinch when they hear no, they just let it roll off their back. Take a page out of their book and channel their non-attachment.
One final thought before I go: "There are only good days, and very good days, there are no bad days, when you think you are having a bad day, close your eyes, take a deep breath, and when you open your eyes, see all the new opportunities that are in front of you" words of wisdom from our kayaking tour guide, Jose in Costa Rica.