Rejection is a thief. It steals our joy and our peace. It also robs us of our sense of self. It makes us feel like we are not good enough; we are a failure; we don’t matter and lead us to doubt our worth. Nobody is immune to its effects. Every person wants to be liked, loved, accepted and hearing the word “no” may be dreadful.
Rejection is often accompanied by hurt, anger, fear, resentment, self-pity, bitterness, and other negative feelings. It is especially painful when the persons we admire; we look up to reject us. But fortunately, rejection doesn’t define us and should not be a stumbling block to fully living our life.
There are some steps that we can take to deal with rejection.
- Take time for yourself and identify the emotions that come up. You may want to write them down or talk to someone. But don’t suppress them or deny them; else they will simmer beneath the surface. Acknowledge the fact that you’ve been rejected, and it hurts. Don’t say that you don’t care when you actually do. Be honest with yourself.
- Surrender to God. Give Him all your emotions, your disappointment, your expectations, your anger, frustrations. Invite God in your heart. God understands, and He cares for you. (1 Peter 5:7) Ask Him to replace all the negative feelings with His love and peace. He will heal your heart. Trust Him.
- Forgive the persons who rejected you. Ask God courage to do so. You need to make this decision. It may not seem fair, but you will gain more from forgiving than from seething with anger and resentment. Let God defend you in His time.
- Know that God loves you, and He accepts you. He is the one who created you. His love for you is unconditional and endures forever. (Psalms 107:1) No person on earth can love you as God does. God demonstrated His love towards you when He sent his only son Jesus to die for you. So, feed on His love for you. Thank Him daily for loving you as you are.
- Your identity, worth, and value come from God. Trying to define yourself through your relationships, titles, positions, or physical appearance will only add fear and anxiety to your life. Psalms 139:14 says that you’ve been made in an amazing and wonderful way, and all God’s works are wonderful. You are wonderful. Believe it. You are God’s masterpiece. (Ephesians 2:10, NLT) So, learn to respect and value yourself from God’s perspective, not from people or the world’s standards. They do not have the final say. God does.
- Let go to move forward towards your purpose. Don’t try to relive the rejection and dwell on it. It will only make you feel like a victim, resentful, and bitter. You’ve given it to God, so refuse to take it back. You can ask God for strength. If you think and feel that you need to distance yourself from the persons involved, do so for your wellbeing. But decide to move on and focus on your future. You have a purpose in life. Find it and work towards it.
- Reject the negative thoughts and reframe them. Whenever you catch you thinking that you are stupid, not worthy, or other negative things, just stop and realize that these are just lies. Replace them with positive ones and with the truth found in the Scripture. You can think about how beautifully you’ve been created, thanking God for his unfailing love and that He will never leave you nor forsake you. And you can think of your qualities and all the things you do well. You can ask God to help you believe in your value.
Rejection is painful, even the small ones. But don’t let it ruin your self-esteem and your life. It is part of life, accept it, and let it help you become stronger and more resilient. Choose to use it as a way to learn a lesson, grow yourself, and become the person God has created you to be.
If, as a woman, you are motivated to move on from rejection and find your purpose, I’d love to connect with you. Feel free to contact me at Cindy@anewforpurpose.com