How to Accept and Overcome Rejection

Rejection comes in many forms, but we all face it at some point in our lives. Unlike most people, I’ve learned to welcome rejection when it comes. In fact, I would even suggest that rejection is a necessary ingredient for future success. The important question is whether you let rejection defeat you or strengthen you. Benefitting from rejection is a two-step process, which starts with acceptance and ends with overcoming.


  • Don’t get caught up in regrets

Being rejected feels like failing, and it’s easy to lose yourself in the negative feelings it inspires. What if you’d said something different during that job interview? What if you had presented a different proposal to that potential client? What if you had prepared more for that big presentation? Going down this path of regret doesn’t lead anywhere productive. If you find your mind dwelling on regrets, gently redirect your attention and thoughts elsewhere.

  • Look at it from all angles

Reflect back on past rejections that led you to where you are now. Perhaps they felt crushing at the time, but you wouldn’t be who you are if you hadn’t experienced them. As a thought experiment, choose one rejection you’ve experienced and trace the ways it shaped your current success.

  • Keep perspective

Put that rejection into context. Sure, you had one minor setback, but what things are going well in your life right now? You’ll find that the rejection is actually a small blip in the pond.


Now that you’ve accepted the rejection, you can begin to put it to some good.

  • Learn lessons

Perhaps the biggest growth experience arises from reflecting back on the situation and acknowledging where things went wrong and ways you could have done better. This is different from mere regret because you are not wallowing in the pain – you are learning from it. If you haven’t accepted your rejections yet then you won’t be able to successfully complete this step.

  • Power forward

Once you’ve gotten to this point, you’re ready to allow the rejection to fuel you forward.  Let this entire experience motivate you to succeed the next time around.

Well, there you have it. Everyone experiences rejection, but truly successful people refuse to let rejection hold them back.