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Rejection hurts. It hurts so bad that you never want to risk getting rejected again.
Rejection can make you feel like you’re not good enough to be someone’s boyfriend or girlfriend; as though you are not “relationship material.”
But that’s simply not true. As horrible as it can be, rejection is a natural part of the dating process, even more so with online dating.
Perhaps you want to give up right now. You’ve been rejected one too many times for your self-esteem to cope with and you can’t take it anymore. I’m here to ask you to reconsider.
Don’t deprive the dating world of all your great qualities, because chances are there will be someone out there for you.
Whether you don’t get enough matches on dating apps or websites, or you get rejected after several messages—or even several dates—the important thing is not to give up.
While I can’t promise to take away all the pain of being rejected, I will share some tips to soften the blow. Here’s how to deal with rejection in dating.
Speak to an accredited and experienced therapist to help you cope better with the hurt of rejection when dating. You may want to try speaking to one via BetterHelp.com for quality care at its most convenient.
1. Don’t take it personally.
“It’s not you, it’s me.”
You’ve heard it before, you’ll hear it again, and well, it really is like that most of the time.
When someone rejects you, it has little to do with you and more to do with them and their perception of you. Most importantly, it has to do with everyone looking after themselves before even considering taking care of someone else.
Everyone is looking for someone to suit themselves, their desires, their lifestyle. The person they are looking for has to be right for them. So, it really is a “them” thing, even though it feels like a “you” thing.
2. Don’t try to change things.
When someone rejects you, don’t keep trying to change their mind. If you write a message while you’re overwhelmed with emotions, stop yourself from actually sending it. Instead, sleep on it, and see if you really want to go through with it in the morning. Does it still matter to you in the light of day?
They can always reach out to you by themselves if they’ve changed their mind. Remind yourself of this, and don’t try to convince them of your worthiness.
3. Don’t try to get back at them.
You’re angry, and that’s a typical human reaction to being rejected by a potential romantic interest. Among the many other emotions you may feel, you may be pissed off at them for not seeing you as worthy of their love.
Trying to make them jealous and using manipulative tricks to gain their attention are just some of the ways people attempt to hurt the person who rejected them.
Sometimes you want to gain the opportunity to reject them back, sometimes you just want them back. All in all, you want to get back at them for rejecting you. Restrain yourself from doing this as it is not going to do any good for anyone.
4. Boost your confidence.
Your ego got hurt; this often happens when a person gets rejected. So, boost your confidence in whichever way works for you. The best idea is to invest time in self-improvement and meet new people.
Change your style, work out, ditch your bad habits, and flirt back when someone flirts with you, or even dare to wink at a stranger. Remind yourself that you’re a rockstar all on your own.
Although we don’t recommend trying to hurt them back, you can utilize “spite from a distance” to feel better about yourself. By this, I mean that spite can be a fantastic motivator to work on yourself and thus give yourself the confidence boost you need to deal with the rejection. You can show them what they’re missing out on by becoming an even more dazzling individual than you already are.
5. Realize that they might only be rejecting you romantically.
Sometimes, it’s not about you or them, it’s about what’s between you. The energy, the chemistry, the vibe—it’s just not there. That’s what “I’m not feeling it” really means. They don’t feel the same way about you, and that hurts. This is a perfectly normal occurrence in the dating world, and even in other areas of life.
However, sometimes a person is rejecting you only romantically and would consider you a friend. “Let’s stay friends” sometimes is an honest attempt to keep you in their life, although they’re aware that it probably won’t work because you’ll still be into them. Can you be friends with someone you are crushing on? Yes, of course. But ask yourself if it’s worth trying or if you’re better off parting ways completely.
6. Consider whether you like them that much.
Who are they to reject you? Are they really that great? Well, maybe they’re cool, but who cares. Maybe you just liked the vibe, and they judged you based on some tiny detail. It happens all the time.
People can be jerks. So, consider whether you like this person that much to even want them anymore. Maybe they did you a favor by rejecting you, and you just dodged a bullet.
7. Think about what you could learn from this.
You can look at everything in life as a learning experience that helps you grow. Rejection can teach you that people aren’t always nice. But it can also teach you how you can improve your life and get better at dating—or even other areas of your life.
For instance, maybe you could work on your communication skills. What you can also learn is that not everyone is going to like you, and that’s okay. It’s a normal part of human interaction.
It’s not awkward, cringy, embarrassing, or humiliating. If a person made it seem that way, you don’t want them around anyway, so learn to let go quickly. Not everyone is meant to stick around.
8. Remember where it all leads.
Most likely, you’re hoping for only one romantic partner. So, it can’t work out with all the rest that led to them. You have to reject a few people and get rejected on your way to The One.
Someone who doesn’t like you in a romantic way is definitely not The One no matter how much you like them. So what? You’ll like someone else just as much, or even more. You just need to give it some time. It’s very important to be patient when you’re looking for the right match. Be aware that the process includes being rejected.
9. Consider things from their perspective.
Maybe they didn’t like your profile, or you exchanged a few messages and they ghosted you. Perhaps you went on a few dates but it went nowhere. What went wrong? This question might be torturing you, but don’t let it.
Consider things from their perspective. They’re formulating an opinion of you that is based on the very short period of time that they’ve known you. How did you seem? This is not about you, it’s about their perception of you. They don’t know your entire life story.
Maybe you were grumpy on the date, so they’ve concluded you’re a negative person. They weren’t aware that you came from a long hard day at work. It could be as simple as that.
10. Allow yourself to feel hurt.
It’s okay to feel hurt. But did this person break your heart or just bruise your ego? How well do you know them? Allow yourself to feel sad, but also be aware that you’ve only known them a short time. Do you really care about them enough to pursue the relationship? Did you actually like the real them?
It’s too bad that you didn’t get to know each other better, because you might be the right fit. But they called it quits, and that’s on them.
11. Be honest but calm.
If you do need to communicate with them again, be honest and stay calm. Don’t write angry or sad messages. Try to communicate as two adults who probably barely know each other.
Inform them that they’ve hurt your feelings, they haven’t really given you a chance, and someone else will. Put it that way, or however you wish, but while you’re being honest, make sure that you’re being calm and assertive. Don’t lash out or send angry messages.
In reality, your best bet is not to contact them again at all.
12. Accept it.
You might feel tempted to try to change their mind, but now it’s time to accept that they’re not interested, maybe even in a non-romantic way. That’s their right to choose, and you need to accept it and let them be. Let them go because they weren’t meant to stay in your life.
Stay cool about the whole thing, and be the bigger person by accepting it and moving on like it didn’t hurt you that much.
The odds are, they’re looking for The One too, and they’ve decided it’s not you. So, you’re really not meant to be.
13. Move on.
What kind of relationship could you have with this person? Maybe it already felt like you were in a relationship with them, and you were regularly messaging or dating. Perhaps that’s all you miss now, and you want it back so badly that you don’t see the bigger picture.
Try to understand that a relationship with them wouldn’t make you happy, and you don’t want it anymore either. Move on to someone who will feel the same way about you and remind yourself that you need to reject some people too if you feel like it’s not the real deal.
14. Be patient.
Patience is a virtue that could save you from wasting a lot of time. Don’t forget that time is relative. Will this matter five years from now? Then don’t let it matter for five more days or even five more minutes. Remind yourself of the big plan, your future, and how long your life is.
You’re looking for someone to spend years with, most likely. It’s only natural that not everyone will be ready for this type of commitment. Time is valuable, and we don’t give it easily, so be mindful of how you share your resources and respect other people’s choices.
15. Don’t turn it into more than it is.
We tend to make a big deal out of getting rejected because it hurts our egos. So, try to see it the way it happened. This person probably didn’t publicly humiliate you by saying nasty and hurtful things about you so that everyone around you could hear them.
They likely just found their own way to reject you nicely or ghosted you to avoid facing your reaction. That’s all that happened, and it had to be. Don’t waste your time thinking about it when there’s plenty more fish in the sea.
16. Let it go because it wasn’t meant to be.
Let bygones be bygones, live and let live. Don’t harbor negative feelings when you can just let them go and move on to the future you’re meant to have. Not everyone you meet is going to be a part of that future.
Most likely, you exchanged several messages with this person or even went on a few dates. That can be hard to let go because you’ve already invested into that relationship. Treat it as any other breakup if it will help you let go and move on when it’s clearly not meant to be.
17. Accept rejection as a normal part of life.
People face rejection in all aspects of their lives. You can get rejected by a bank, an employer, a customer, or by a friend. That might be the reason why it hurts so bad: because it happens everywhere, and you get sick of it.
Being rejected romantically is not the worst. Just remember all those job interviews where you didn’t land the gig. Yeah, it happens, and it happens to all of us. But you only need to succeed once, even though you can fail countless times. People rarely succeed on their first try—basically never—so be okay with failing a few times before you make it big.
18. Accept that it happens to everyone.
You’re not special. Everyone gets rejected. It’s just that some people find a better way to deal with it, and they move on more quickly.
As already mentioned, don’t make it bigger than it is. Rejection is a part of life that everyone experiences at some point in this journey. Keep the destination in mind, and accept that you can’t plan for everything. Be patient. You will find the right person.
The important thing is to not allow the hurt you feel turn into a fear of rejection because that will prevent you from even trying to meet someone in the first place.
19. Remind yourself of your good qualities.
Getting rejected hurts your self-esteem, which might have been fragile already, so take some time to work on it. Find what empowers you and dedicate your time to personal development and self-care. Show yourself love as if you were your own best friend and treat yourself that way.
Take yourself out to dinner, buy yourself flowers or a gift, take a long hot bath, or get a massage. Remind yourself of your good qualities and keep them in mind the next time some stranger makes you doubt your worth. Don’t define yourself based on what someone else thinks, and do kind things for yourself.
20. Look forward to a new opportunity.
This person was just blocking your view, so now you can keep your eyes wide open and grab a new opportunity. Look forward to it instead of staying hung up on someone who doesn’t see themselves with you.
Think of the ideal partner that you see yourself with years from now and how they would feel about you. Your person is out there. So keep searching. Know that the more you look, the more you’re going to get let down, but that’s also how your true love will be found.
21. Put yourself out there.
Don’t give up on dating altogether just because someone rejected you. Get back out there and work on finding the person who is right for you. Yeah, you wasted some time with the wrong one, but be thankful it wasn’t that long. Now it’s time to start looking again.
Dating can be exhausting, so take a break for as long as you need. Just make sure to get back on that horse and put yourself out there where your future match can see you.
22. Don’t let it define you.
The world didn’t reject you just because some potential romantic partners did. You’re not less lovable or worthy because someone rejected you.
Don’t let your success or lack of it define you when it’s just your love life and the dating pool that’s in play. You’re a lot more than what you get to say to your potential partners. Value yourself, and don’t let anyone make you feel like you’re not good enough. If you’re too much for them, they can go ahead and find less.
23. Avoid negative self-talk.
Don’t talk badly about yourself. Talk about yourself—and to yourself—the same way you would about someone you love and care for dearly. Challenge negative thoughts when they occur to prove them wrong, and strive to improve in areas where you don’t see yourself reaching your full potential.
Maybe you’re not who you want to be now, but you can be, and you’re already working on it. Try to stay positive, and treat yourself with kindness and love.
24. Let your loved ones support you.
Your friends and family members can remind you that you are lovable and more than good enough—you just picked the wrong person to date. Talk to them and let them reassure you that it’s going to be okay.
You could also talk to a therapist who can offer valuable insights that your friends and family might not have. It can do wonders to get your thoughts and feelings out into the open and get the input and advice of a trained professional.
BetterHelp.com is a website where you can connect with a therapist via phone, video, or instant message.
While you may try to work through this yourself, it may be a bigger issue than self-help can address. And if it is affecting your mental well-being, relationships, or life in general, it is a significant thing that needs to be resolved.
Rejection hits a lot of people really hard and many never learn how to deal with it properly. If it’s at all possible in your circumstances, therapy is 100% the best way forward.
Here’s that link again if you’d like to learn more about the service BetterHelp.com provide and the process of getting started.
25. Don’t see it as a life sentence.
“I’m never going to find love.”
“All men/women are the same.”
These statements lead nowhere and aren’t true. Don’t see one or a few experiences as a life sentence that isn’t going to change.
Even when you are dealing with constant rejection, you can improve your dating life with effort. And if you persist, with patience, you’ll reach the person that you are meant to be with.
26. Pick your dates wisely.
In the end, all that’s left is to pick your dates wisely. Don’t forget that you’re picking your dates too, not just the other way around. You can reject someone, and you should, if you’re not feeling it.
When a person is reluctant to date you, don’t force a relationship. Learn to sense when someone is pulling away from you. Let them leave if they don’t want to be in your life. You’ll soon open the door to someone amazing who is eager to stay.
Rejection is never easy, but when you learn to deal with it, it doesn’t have to hurt this badly; it’s just part of the journey.
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