Rejection hurts. There’s no denying it.
It’s the fear of that pain that can make us withdraw and stop putting ourselves out there.
But I’m here to tell you that rejection is actually a VITAL part of dating that, if you can learn to handle it, will actually make dating better and easier than before.
Here’s why reasons that rejection makes dating easier…
1. Rejection makes you stronger
You can’t grow without adversity. While, in the moment, it feels like we might die, if we’re able to take a rejection with grace, maintain our composure and learn from it, then we’ll come out stronger than we were before.
This is why people who always get their way in life are often unable to handle it when things get messy.
There’s actually an entire movement that seeks out rejection as a source of strength. Have you ever heard of rejection therapy? This practice has participants seeking out rejection on a daily basis by putting themselves out there in ways that seem totally crazy.
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This can include things like asking a bus driver if he’ll let you drive the bus, asking for a free ring from a jewelry store, or trying to get an honorary degree from Harvard. Basically you’re trying to get them to say no to you. Some people even do this for 100 days in a row, claiming it makes them more resilient.
This is the kind of energy you need to bring into dating. Ask out the most attractive person you’ve ever met. What’s the worst that can happen? They’ll say no and it’ll be a little awkward. The truth is that the more you’re rejected, the less it will hurt. Pretty soon you’ll realize that being rejected is no big deal and you’ll be set free to take more risks than ever before.
2. Rejection makes you look in the mirror
Oftentimes we’re rejected for things totally out of our control like how we look. But sometimes we get rejected because of how we act and how we treat others. So when you get rejected by someone that actually knows you pretty well, ask yourself “what is it that I’m putting out there that makes them think that I’d be a bad date?”
Be objective here. The point of this exercise isn’t to shame yourself or beat yourself up. It’s about looking at things with clear eyes and seeing what it was that made them reject you. Maybe this will be something you want to work on, or maybe it will be something that you’re proud of and don’t want to change. Either way, this will give you insight. Self awareness is crucial when it comes to dating. If you know yourself, you can do anything.
3. Rejection teaches you the problems with your approach
Beyond some specific trait, it could just be that the way you show interest isn’t working. Maybe you were too aggressive, too flirty, or too self conscious.
It can be hard to pinpoint exactly what you did wrong, if anything. But you’re gathering data and if you can learn from it then every time you’re rejected you’ll be improving yourself and your chances.
4. Rejection makes you appreciate acceptance
If you have everything handed to you in life, you won’t appreciate anything you get. So in the same way struggling financially makes you appreciate money way more than those who already have it, every time you’re told no makes the next yes all the sweeter.
This will make you really value the romantic connections you are able to make and you’ll ultimately treat them better and appreciate them more than you would otherwise.
You can call this desperation, but at the end of the day most of us are looking to settle down with one person. If you’re someone who is showered with romantic attention, it will be easier and more tempting to cheat, or even just compare your partner to other people. If you’ve faced constant rejection then you’ll know that this person is the one who you’re meant to be with and you’ll really see the value in what you have.
5. Rejection teaches you boundaries
Boundaries are so important when it comes to dating. I think people who can effectively communicate and maintain their own boundaries while respecting the boundaries of others will have an easier time in just about any relationship situation I can think of.
A rejection is just another way of setting a boundary. For example, if you try to ask out your close friend and they turn you down, that’s them setting a boundary. They’re saying “we can be friends but I’m not interested in you romantically.”
The more you see boundaries being set, the more you’ll start to sense them without having to be told and this awareness will allow you to avoid crossing lines and hurting people. It’s also going to make you think about your own boundaries more and be vocal about them.
6. Rejection makes you appreciate someone else’s viewpoint
Moments like this, as painful as they can be, are extremely real. No matter how nice they try to be, a rejection is one of the least ambiguous things you can experience.
These moments show you who they are and how they see you. This can help you understand them better and achieve empathy that you didn’t have before.
Properly handling rejection will mean reframing how you feel about this person and your relationship with them and this kind of flexibility is worth fostering.
7. Rejection helps you separate your self worth from external factors
The worst part of rejection is that it can really hurt your self worth. On some level you’re thinking “they don’t want me because I’m not worth anything.” This hurts.
But the more you can be rejected and see that life goes on, and especially when other people down the line accept you and fight for you, you’ll start to realize that being rejected actually doesn’t reflect on your self worth at all.
You are still worthy of value even if a few people you knew in passing didn’t want to pursue something romantic with you.
Rejection isn’t some black mark on your soul that makes you unlovable. It simply means that this one person, in this moment, didn’t want you and that’s totally okay.
8. Rejection teaches you how to treat people
This is a knife that cuts both ways. If you’re out there in the world, making connections with people, you’re going to run into situations where you have to reject people’s advances. If you’ve experienced being on the other end of this, then you’ll know which kinds of rejections hurt the most and how to let someone down easy.
If you’re dealing with someone aggressive, you’ll know how to stop them in their tracks by being extremely clear and direct. Basically you’ll model your own rejections after those that were most effective in your own past.
This skill is vital, especially if you’re dealing with people who you might need to see again in the future like friends or coworkers.
9. Rejection shrinks your options
Many people avoid rejection because they want to imagine a world where everyone is secretly in love with them and waiting for them to show up and ask them out. But we all know that this is just a fantasy that’s keeping you from connecting with anyone at all.
Regular rejection can help bring you down to earth. It will show you the kinds of people you can and can’t attract and while this can be humbling, it will also provide clarity. Even while you’re single, this will make you focus on a small number of people rather than being distracted by every pretty face around you.
10. Rejection shows you that being rejected isn’t the end of the world
Let’s circle back to rejection therapy. People take this approach because they’ve been so bad at dealing with rejection in the past. By seeking out rejection every day, they become desensitized to the pain that comes with rejection and realize that they have no choice but to accept it and more on.
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This mindset is guaranteed to make you more confident, less concerned with how other people think, and more willing to put yourself out there in the future.
That just about does it for this video. I hope I’ve shown you that rejection, despite how it may seem, serves an important function in the dating world and if you can embrace it, you can learn a lot about yourself and the world around you. So instead of running from rejection, keep putting yourself out there and facing rejection with dignity and self respect. You’ll be glad you did.