“With the first pick of the 2015 NFL Draft…”
“After careful consideration, we’ve decided to go with…”
“I’m sorry, but I've met someone else…”
There are various ways to say "not you." I can think of many more, but let’s just leave it at that. (I wouldn’t want to pour any more salt on tender wounds.)
If you’re reading this, odds are you’ve probably heard a variation of one of these phrases in your life, and we must acknowledge we'll undoubtedly hear it many more times down the road.
In preparation for that inevitable moment, it is imperative we stop ourselves, analyze our reactions and figure out why we're in these situations.
I can’t imagine you felt great after getting a hand to the face, which is why I’m here to empathize with you and explain why you’ve been experiencing anger, disappointment, self-doubt and confusion.
The most important reason you felt this way is because, at that moment in time, you thought you were the right choice for the title you were seeking.
You subconsciously told yourself you covered all of your bases and paid your dues, and you're more than comfortable with putting all your eggs in that one basket.
If you’re Marcus Mariota and went second overall, you’re going to do everything within your power to make the Tampa Bay Buccaneers regret it.
When you get a second interview for a job only to have the governing body inform you it's hiring someone else, you’re going to do everything in your power to make that company regret it.
When you’ve been dating someone for a brief period of time, and the person decides to go in another direction, you’re going to do everything within your power to make that man or woman regret it.
You’re starting to see a pattern here, aren’t you? Of course, you are!
Guess what? It’s perfectly normal. That’s how we work. We’re genetically wired to react in a way that elevates our mindsets when we endure emotional distress.
But, why does it hurt so much? Rejection.
Rejection makes you feel as if you’re not deserving of the spot you desired. More importantly, deep down in your heart, you believed you were the best option available.
Above all, rejection leads to confusion. If you were the missing piece of the puzzle, why would someone want to complete it by forcing it with someone else?
This is when self-doubt starts to rear its ugly head. You walk in with a certain expectation only to be caught off guard.
Next thing you know, you’re asking yourself questions like, “Was it something I did or said?” and “Am I good enough?”
Your self-esteem might suffer as a result of these deprecating interrogations, so it's imperative we never take rejection too seriously.
Come to grips and make peace with the fact that sometimes people will reject the request you've put forth -- not you. You can't see it as a personal attack.
Let's face it: If we fell victim to that scenario on a regular basis, we'd be checking in and out of a psychiatric ward.
Train your brain to think differently moving forward. Chances are you just weren’t the right fit at the moment.
Encourage yourself to think something better is in store for you. This is not the time to be uncertain of yourself or of your capabilities.
You didn’t get it? So, what? Move on. It’s just not your time. You’re meant for bigger and better things.
Yes, you’re going to be disappointed, and that’s a given. It’s completely understandable. For a second, you thought everything you were working for was going to pay off, but then life granted you an unforeseen reality check.
Although you might be tempted to soak in a sea of sorrow, leaving those dark shadows of misery will be paramount to your recovery.
Righting the ship sooner rather than later is very helpful in rallying yourself back to happiness.
Having a shoulder to lean on during times of need surely goes a long way. Rejection often causes us to become ticking verbal time bombs.
We will want to vent. Having a dependable friend nearby who is willing to have a cup of coffee and listen to you will ease the pain and burden of rejection. Reach for your cell phone and press your speed dial.
Distractions are a great way to prevent dwelling on your hapless recent events. Disconnect by partaking in activities that will boost your ego and allow for a careless state of mind.
Get back to square one while enjoying the people and activities that make you feel like yourself.
Let me save you some suspense: Things aren’t always going to work out, but your efforts are never going to be in vain. You’re always going to learn something from them, and if you don’t, that burden will fall squarely on your shoulders.
It's a crazy world out there, and you're going to run into plenty of rejection. Learn to roll with the punches. Otherwise, life is just going to have a field day with you.
I'm not saying you can't have a grieving period, but the sooner you adopt a healthy attitude toward rejection, the more brief it will be between events in your life.
Those emotions you’re feeling, however, aren't easily forgotten. Take it from me, a guy who has seen a lot of ups and downs.
Whenever I feel disappointed, I make sure I store the feeling in a mental vault that I only open whenever I see something huge on the horizon, something I know can change my life forever.
The next time you put your eyes on the prize, close your eyes and go back to how unfortunate your last venture made you feel.
Tell yourself to do everything in your power to never feel that way again. More often than not, you won’t. We have a hard time forgetting events that scarred us.
Learn from adversity in order to establish a better future for yourself. The only way to live is by getting better.