Rejection has been a common topic in my life the past few weeks.
It all started at dinner. I was talking to a woman about online dating. She admitted that she didn't love the idea of it because you're setting yourself up for constant rejection.
Deadpan, I said something along the lines of, "Rejection sucks, but you get over it eventually."
Everyone laughed, mainly because I delivered it with a weird mixture of I'm-dead-inside-vibes and I'm-confident-and-okay. But really, I mean exactly what I said.
Rejection does suck.
I went to brunch with a guy, saw him 2-3 more times in one week (how serious, right!?), and then he never texted me again. I reached out to him and heard absolutely nothing back, ever. Within six hours of me texting him the day after we hung out for the last time, I had a feeling he was fading. A day after I texted him, I concluded he either died, got back with an ex, met a new girl, died, moved away, thought we got too serious, died or flat out just didn't like me.
I didn't feel fabulous about it, but I'm not going to grovel for a made-up reason as to why he ghosted (not even faded, but totally ghosted). Instead, I did what any reasonable woman would do: picked herself up, ate some ice cream, went to yoga and then hopped back on some dating apps.
Next up was a meathead. He was a bulky gymrat who looked like he would have a Napoleon complex, but I was swipe happy and we matched. Red flag number one was that his first question was, "What's your sign?"
And I said, "As in astrological?" Just because I honestly couldn't believe this beefcake cared about my sign. Then I replied with my sign. He then sent me, "Okay." And then I was ready to never reply again since he was clearly judging me based on my sign (I'm a crazy Cancer, whatever).
Then he asked for my Instagram handle (throw another flag, ref). I gave it to him despite thinking it was weird. He then followed me and quickly unfollowed me. Sigh, ANOTHER FLAG. If you're going to use my Instagram to make snap judgements, at least be good at creeping without letting me know you're there.
Apparently this guy doesn't appreciate my family, autumn aesthetics, food, other people's dogs and Italy. He blocked me on the dating app.
I honestly didn't have a very good impression of this guy, but it still stung putting myself out there to get critically judged and quickly discarded.
All this can be summed up with, "Rejection sucks." But, like I've also already said, "You get over it eventually."
For both of these bits of rejection, 'eventually' was essentially immediately upon accepting that it happened. Perhaps it's because I've 'moved on,' and found a new few prospects (thanks dating apps). Or maybe it's because I'm used to dating apps and the constant rejection. Or maybe it's just because I am confident AND dead inside.
After mulling about in my head about this thought of the normalcy of rejection, Yahoo greeted me with an article about teaching kids how to be rejection-proof. It was like the universe could tell it was my topic-of-the-moment. The realization I had is obvious, yet worth rehashing.
Rejection is just part of life, or else you're really not doing anything of value. I learned this at my old job too. I read a stat that millennial women don't ask for raises enough, so I made a hobby out of asking for more money. I got rejected a lot, but eventually it worked and I got a bit more money. Same with job interviews. I know people who don't apply to jobs because they don't want to get rejected / "I'll never get it."
It's okay to put yourself out there to just see what happens.
The job I have now, I was confident I was going to get rejected. I mean, it's such a cool job! It's a better title! And more money! While I might get rebuffed a lot in my dating life, I didn't get rejected in my professional life this time. I faced sure rejection, and it didn't happen.
What sits between you and new is the real, likely prospect of rejection. If you're putting yourself out there for something better, you're going to weather a bit of a storm. I heard a lot of no's getting to my new job. But every time I got passed on, I just concentrated harder on my next opportunity. I chased every possibility.
No matter how many times I get rejected, I'm going to keep running headfirst at life like I'm impervious to the discomfort of rejection to get to the truly meaningful opportunities when the 'yeses,' ring out.