On Rejection

Rejection, I think, is a profound experience. Especially when it comes from those close to our hearts. Profoundly sad, profoundly lonely, and yet also, profoundly illuminating.

Because rejection, leads us to ask “Why?” Why was I rejected? What went wrong? These questions, encourage us to probe ourselves and the circumstances of our rejection, in the search for an answer.

But the search is always fraught with danger. Because the answer is not always clear. It is as much ours’ to decide, as it is ours’ to discover… So we are left up a creek without a paddle, at the mercy of our various fears and insecurities.

You see, the thing about rejection, is that it is not about the rejection at all. Rather, it is about acceptance. Wanting to be accepted. Wanting to be selected. Wanting to belong.

So preceding every rejection, is an attempt to be accepted. An attempt that leaves us vulnerable… Full of fear, and doubt, and hope.

Thus if you are afraid that your dream job will reject you because your resume is short, then should they reject, you will immediately blame your short resume – and if you’re afraid that your crush will reject you because you are short, then should she reject you, you will blame your height.

In this way, rejections expose us to our vulnerabilities, while leading us down a precarious and questionable path. I mean, why must everything be about you? and what you did or didn’t do?

That company you like has its own concerns. That person you like has their own relationship goals. Truth be told, your rejection may have very little to do with you and your efforts (or lack there of).

Nonetheless, I commend those who are able to gracefully handle rejections whilst confronting their inner demons. For it is an art that I am yet to master.

Damola Mabogunje

Software Engineer by day, Blogger, Poet and Author, by night, I spend my days writing everything from the convex comma, to highly complex code.

4 thoughts on “On Rejection

  1. That dream job rejection can burn though. Never pleasant to hear you aren’t good enough for something or someone.

    1. Yeah… the more it matters, the more it hurts, the harder it is to deal with. But if we’re lucky, we learn something valuable in the process – about ourselves, about themselves, about life itself.

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