I have Bipolar 1 and have known about it for the last 15 years. I have been in recovery ever since. One of the hardest things to go through is rejection. People say they understand but in reality they don’t and some don’t want to know. Us so called “crazy people” get the short end of the stick everytime.
Unless you know someone who has it then you know nothing about it. Read all you like but to experience it first hand gives you complete insite to the disease. I was even scared when I got the diagnosis. I thought I was crazy but I not. I am more normal than many of the people I run across. My illness has a name that I can live with. Some people are just crazy.
1. Accept and acknowledge how you feel: When we experience rejection, we tend to show resistance trying to hold back our painful emotions and even though it might seem to be the easiest to do, this is the best way to prolong the pain and dwell on feelings of rejection. Feel your feelings and let it out. I guarantee the pressure in your head and heart with be elevated to some extent
You should allow yourself to acknowledge and feel these emotions and remember that you have the right to feel hurt, disappointed, embarrassed, or angry. Give yourself enough time to grieve, depending on the intensity of the experience and the emotions that arise. Once you have allowed yourself to express and feel your emotions it may be easier for you to bounce back and move on with your life. Some things like a death is almost more than some of us can handle. I have mourning over my moms death sex years ago and my first husbands five years ago. I don’t’ know how to work through this except for one day at a time. I miss them terribly.
2. Learn from rejection
Once you were able to process the feelings and get a better understanding of what happened, try to turn rejection into an opportunity of self-growth.
Rejection can be a good way to gain feedback from others. You might even realize that there is something you want to change. Of course, you should only consider this if you want it and you feel it would allow you to grow. I’m not talking about changing to get other people’s approval or fit in.
You could even ask the person why they rejected you. You will realize that, often, the reason is entirely different from what you thought.
In some cases, being rejected can be an opportunity to spot incompatibilities or even screen out toxic relationships. At the end of the day, if someone leaves your life, it probably means that the two of you were not a match.
3. Accept rejection
This doesn’t mean that you should expect rejection, but depending on the situation, preparing yourself to be rejected might help you handle your emotions more easily. When our children reach a certain age, we should be prepared to sometimes be rejected by them and even encourage them on their journey to finding themselves. In this case, knowing that this behavior is perfectly normal can help process the strong emotions that might emerge.
4. Face your fear
We shouldn’t let the fear of rejection prevent us from doing certain things. One of the best ways to diminish the effects of rejection on you is to face your fear consciously. As with most feelings, we handle them better once we get used to them. Consider purposely putting yourself in (manageable) situations with a risk of being rejected: if you are dating ask someone out; if you are running a business, offer your services; if you believe in something, share it with other people. This is a constructive way of taking your power back – and who knows which opportunities it might bring?
Even if rejection is an integral part of life, nobody is immune to it. If we want to grow and be ourselves, we need to put ourselves out there and face rejection. However, it is crucial that we don’t let it affect our self-image and stop us from being ourselves. Learning how to embrace rejection gives you a great opportunity to develop your emotional strength.
5. Try to understand why it hurts you.
It is not an easy feat to take a good look at ourselves but it is necessary. If you find yourself being upset when people don’t respond in a timely manner when you contact them, or maybe you noticed that you couldn’t handle someone showing their disapproval. Everybody has their own triggers.
Overcoming rejection can be an excellent opportunity for self-examination. Try to understand why a specific situation is particularly alarming for you. Our triggers are related to old wounds. Identifying your emotional triggers will help you understand and maybe adjust your responses to specific situations and then comes the healing.
6. Don’t take it personally
Be aware of your wounds. Identify self-critical and unrealistic thoughts by putting rejection into perspective. It is important to understand that rejection is a two-sided situation. You might feel upset and hurt when a friend refuses your help, but it might have nothing to do with you. Maybe they need time to process their feelings or don’t want to bother you with their problems.
Also, remember that, just as you, other people have their triggers too. Maybe your behavior or a simple comment made them feel uncomfortable, but it has little to do with you. Don’t let rejection define you. If a person turns you down, it doesn’t mean you are not worthy or unlovable. It could be that you are just incompatible with this person or that they couldn’t handle a specific behavior instead of your entire person. Remember that rejection is a kind of judgment and therefore something subjective.