One of the things you will get in contact with in your twenties when you’re starting your career is job rejection. Everyone experiences it sooner or later. Maybe when you’re just entering the workforce or maybe after you’ve just lost your job. It never gets easier but there are definitely ways to deal with it in a healthy way.
As someone who has experienced it many times — after just a job application but also after an interview — I can say that I now feel like I can handle the job rejection in a healthy way. It’s sometimes tougher — especially when it’s a job I really wanted. But I got a couple of ways I want to share today how I deal with it.
TAKE TIME TO FEEL SAD ABOUT NOT GETTING THE JOB
First things first: let yourself feel sad about the job rejection. Don’t hide your feelings about it. It’s perfectly normal to feel rejected or sad about not getting a job. It sucks. I’ve been there before and it’s no fun when you put effort into an application and you get rejected. Or if you went to an interview, thought you nailed it and they end up deciding to go with someone else. It’s okay to feel sad about it.
I’m not the most outwards emotional person — I definitely keep a lot on the inside, brooding — but I’ve learned that it’s okay to be sad about a job rejection. Especially to voice it without downplaying my feelings or making a joke about it — which is my natural reaction. I just take it all in, let myself cry if I need to and when people ask about it I’m upfront that it just sucks.
DON’T TAKE IT PERSONALLY — THE JOB WAS PROBABLY NOT A GOOD FIT
Not to sound like that friend that tells you after a break up that he wasn’t good enough for you but the job wasn’t good enough for you. If you get rejected because it wasn’t a good fit, the job probably wasn’t a good fit for your as well. I’ve found this quote while researching the subject on one of my favorite career websites, theeverygirl.com, that explains it even more perfectly:
“Every job has drawbacks. If you weren’t chosen for your dream position because you were deemed “not a good fit”, consider that the job may not be a good fit for you either.” — Sarah Seung-McFarland
I’ve learned along the way to not take the job rejection too personally or doubt myself. If you rationally look at the situation, the company gets many applications per job offer. They probably have a strategy how to get through them quickly and efficiently to find their perfect fit. Just because that wasn’t you doesn’t mean you’re not qualified for the job — that I’m not qualified for the job. Just realize that the job rejection is not a reflection on you as a person. You’re good at what you do, the job just turned out not to be a fit for you.
READ MORE: WHY I’M A PROUD INTROVERT
ASK FOR FEEDBACK
When you get a job rejection, ask for feedback from the person calling or emailing you. Not only could it make you feel a little better, it could also help you with your next job application or interview. I’m not saying that everyone will reply. I’ve had instances in which the company didn’t not even tell me that I didn’t get the job — what’s up with that btw! — but it’s worth a shot. They might have some useful tips that will help you land your next job interview.
DO SOMETHING FUN (WITHOUT SPENDING TOO MUCH MONEY)
You know what the best thing is that will get your mind off of your job rejection? Doing something fun with friends or by yourself.
Have a boozy movie night at home if you don’t want to spend too much money or go for a drink with friends. Surround yourself with your girl gang — the people in your life that support you and will cheer you on. Or take a night off and put on a face mask, get a drink and relax. Whatever works for you.
It’s important to get your mind out of the job application process. Yes getting a job is important but it should not rule your entire life. There is more to it than working.
MOVE ON TO THE NEXT INTERVIEW
Now that you’ve been through the whole process, it’s time to move on. It might be harder when you thought that you’ve found the perfect job but there are more jobs out there that will be just as perfectly. You might even get surprised by a company you’ve never seen yourself working at.
You might feel like you want to just quit trying — I know I’ve been there — but you need to get back up and try again. For me that’s refreshing my LinkedIn, go through my resume and creating a template that I can tailor to any application to make the process more doable. And I just send out at least two applications to break the ice for myself.
So go on, refresh your resume and LinkedIn with the feedback you’ve gotten. Write a template that you can apply to every application. And go out there with a new winners mindset. You’re talented, you’re skilled and you’ll find a job that’s a good fit. Go get em!