How to Deal with Painful Feelings of Rejection

Facing rejection is a common experience but it’s also a very painful experience. 

We feel alone, outcast, and unwanted, and often we feel hopeless as we contemplate the future.

But there are also strategies that can help us deal with this. They can help us to cope better with the feelings of rejection.

They include:

1. Pay close attention to your inner critic – What is the lens you view rejection through? Are you on your own side? Are you there for yourself? Or have you turned against yourself? Are you putting yourself down, and repeatedly attacking, and being mean to, yourself?

That inner critic’s voice should be your chief enemy. Right now, it is important that you focus on your strengths, and you show yourself compassion for all that you’ve been through.

2.  Don’t review the relationship with rose-tinted glasses – It is likely what you’re missing is a fantasy bond. An illusion of attachment, security and love that doesn’t really match up with the way that you’ve been treated. So don’t ignore what was bad about that lost relationship. Don’t ignore the hurt and struggle, and the times when things were tough.

You are worthy of being treated with kindness and respect. Don’t tear yourself apart over someone who would act as if you have no value, and don’t matter much to them.

3.  Allow yourself to mourn, and to feel the intense pain – Cutting off our painful feelings, and burying our grief, will only lead to problem in the short- and longer-term. Don’t be frightened of the feelings that hit you out of nowhere, which stop you in your tracks, and are intense and overwhelming.

In the end, facing the feelings will help you to get free.

4.  Don’t allow being victimized to shape the person you become. Don’t allow this to become your identity – Remember, you’re unique. You have many gifts and strengths. As you slowly start to heal, maybe think about exploring and connecting with your individuality, again.

Old connections from the past, can help us find ourselves again. They can help us get in touch with that self that now feels lost.

But trying out new things can also help us to discover hidden parts of ourselves we hadn’t tapped into before.

These are proof that life goes on, and can still be meaningful.

You don’t have to be a victim. You can reinvent yourself.

5. Ask yourself what you’re really trying to fix? The following types of questions can help shed light on this. Think about …

“Why do I want someone who mistreats me, and doesn’t give me the love and respect I deserve?”

“What am I really looking, or yearning, for?”

“Why do I feel so driven to get the attention, or love, of this person?

“Is it right that I allow them to have power over me?”

“Are my drives and feelings balanced – or unhealthy and unbalanced?”

In summary: “Why am I doing this to myself?”

Perhaps loving yourself, and really knowing who you are, are far more important to your mental health than pining after someone who hasn’t loved you well.

And perhaps it is time to be a friend to yourself.

You deserve to be with someone who looks at you every single day like they’ve won the lottery, and have the whole world in front of them.”

26 thoughts on “How to Deal with Painful Feelings of Rejection

  1. There are so many points you’ve made that I can identify with! The one that touches me the most is, “You don’t have to be a victim.” Being frequently gaslighted and ultimately betrayed primed me to think I deserved such treatment. Not true! No one deserves to be a victimized. You can reinvent (rediscover) yourself. I did!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks for sharing this David. I have found the same thing. Very powerful gaslighting messages that tell you there is something wrong with you, and you deserve to be treated badly, can really take root and slowly destroy you. I’m glad you say the truth and have been able to get free as well 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Dealing with any type of rejection brings on painful feelings. Your first strategy has been one that I have had to learn from as my years have matured. I faced some disappointing circumstances with loss of a teaching position years ago because of layoffs.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. This resonates so deeply I realized with a kind of clarity today how often I hoped to win the love of those who really could not love me for me.. If I had loved myself more I would not have tried so hard but its a pattern.. this is so helpful and clear, an excellent post.

    Like

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