I’ve been thinking about rejection lately. Mainly because I’ve been digging into Kait Warman’s new book, which released today. It’s called Thank You for Rejecting Me. Rejection is inevitable and comes in many forms. Fun pep talk, I know. But one of the things I appreciate about this book is how Kait is honest about the sucky parts of rejection in its many forms and points to how we can turn it on its head. She writes this:
“My biggest life rejections have made me into the woman I am today. They’ve led me to discover deeper parts of my soul, given me great endurance and profound strength, and helped me come face-to-face with hidden wounds and grimy shame to experience healing and love. They’ve also taught me how to stand strong in my identity as I’ve made peace with some, conquered and squashed others, and learned to settle the lingering fears about the rejections I might have to face in the future.”
Rejection is an interesting thing. It can make us more risk-averse. It can make us want to be smaller. It can make us want to be less.
But all of that assumes the rejection is an indication of fault or failure. Something Dr. Therapist likes to say is, “It’s information.” When we are rejected, or a creative project fails, or someone we care about betrays us, it’s not necessarily about us. It is information.
There is no shame in feeling sad about a relationship that doesn’t work out, or a project we believe in not coming to fruition. But there are a million reasons things don’t work out that have nothing to do with our inherent worthiness or desirability.
If you’ve been ghosted by a new love interest that seemed promising, as has happened to me, that is information. Perhaps they are not as cool as you thought they were. Perhaps they don’t have the emotional maturity to communicate with you clearly and openly.
If you are the only single person in your community group and someone plans a romantic weekend getaway, that is information. Maybe they didn’t consider how awkward it is to be the 13th wheel. Maybe they didn’t have the imagination or bandwidth to plan something more inclusive.
We can take the information we receive from rejection and choose how we respond. Ally Fallon wrote this on Instagram recently, “Respond to rejection by being MORE YOU. Not less.”
Let’s give ourselves permission to start reframing rejection. Feel the feelings. Process the information. And be more you.