I believe winners are defined by how they respond to losing.
In love, we have all been losers.
Remember that rejection you felt, when the cute guy at the party gave you the cold shoulder? Or that time you went on a great first date and he never called again? Or, worse still, that feeling we all have when we fall head over in heels for someone who doesn’t feel the same way?
It is brutal out there. Losing can leave you asking all those big questions: Can anyone truly love me? Will I ever be capable of keeping someone’s interest? Am I just not cut out for relationships and better off single?
We will all lose at some point – It’s a matter of when, not if.
Love won’t always treat us fairly. Sometimes we will do everything right and still lose. And in those moments we cannot afford to learn the wrong lessons from our pain. I’ve seen people who are on the path to amazing things, and trade it all in after experiencing one big failure that knocks them sideways.
When people get rejected in their love life, I’ve noticed two different kinds of mindsets, and from this mindset alone I can tell if a person is ultimately going to recover and find happiness.
Let’s say a woman goes on a date with a guy and he never calls her back. Or maybe he does call back and says he wants to see other people.
In that moment, we have two choices of how we define that rejection in our heads; a high value mindset or a low value mindset.
Which one of these we choose will determine the meaning we ascribe to that rejection:
A low value mindset says – “He rejected me. He realised I’m not good enough for him.”
A high value mindset says – “He rejected me. He has no idea how great I really am.”
A high value mindset makes moving on from rejection so much easier. And it’s not about being delusional and giving ourselves positive fluff to feel better. It’s about saying the truth: “This guy has only been on one (or a few) dates with me. He couldn’t possibly know what he’s missing out on.”
A low value mindset, on the other hand, can paralyze us. It’s the mindset that leads us to neediness, jealousy, insecurity, and all those negative traits that actually make it harder for someone to fall for us in the first place. When we don’t feel like we are the best thing that could ever happen to a guy, we start to worry that he could walk away and find someone better, and then, because we live in fear that he might leave, we cling on even harder, and eventually our neediness drives him away. (By the way, these feelings of unworthiness happen all the time with guys).
So, in these moments of failure, no matter how good-looking or successful we are, how we deal with failure is going to define everything.
If I could teach one thing to young people starting out in life, it would be what is known as RESILIENCE.
RESILIENCE = “The ability to readily recover after disappointment or loss.”
How much resilience we have is going to be determined by which of the above mindsets we choose. When we lose, do we tell ourselves it’s because we deserve to lose? Or do we tell ourselves that this failure is just another story to tell once we achieve the success we should be having?
See, this is what separates high value people – High value people feel like they deserve success, even if they haven’t had success yet.
Low value spend their lives waiting for someone else to tell them they are worthy, and even then they don’t really believe it, because they don’t feel loveable at their core.
Resilience defines people who reach their dreams in life. Without it, we can spend our whole lives missing out on what we deserve because we waste it wallowing in our failures.
The tip for today is to own your failures – they have taught you more lessons than success ever will.
Today I want to ask you a question: what failures have you recovered from that have ultimately made you stronger? Leave a comment and we’ll do our very best to get back to you!
137 Replies to “How To Bounce Back From Rejection”
Thank you for this Matthew. I’ve found myself in a situation like this at the moment. I was in a serious relationship for four years and have been single for about a year now. In the space of that time I met and felt very strongly for someone but after getting closer and spending some time together, he stop talking to me..completely. He didn’t return my calls or reply to my messages. Like you said, Resilience is the key, he doesn’t know what he passed up :)
Great attitude MeRa. I know it can really suck when that happens, but it’s in those times that we have to persevere and fight even harder. Great to see you’re back on track! Roll on the next guy! x
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I agree with this post. Its very inspirational. Altho we all have those moments where we feel like losers I feel childhood issues (like an ill or super critical parent) can sometimes leave deep feelings of unworthiness that can take a while to recover from… I know I feel like a cat with nine lives and have gotten up time and time again. And its soooooooo true what you say, it makes you stronger. It feels like I am a tree and I have made myself stronger no matter what has gone on around me and now I am ready to bring the right kind of caring to a real relationship. Sorry to go on, but i feel dating is linked to life experience and if you deal with your life, then you will automatically deal with this area of dating and relationship…
Yes absolutely, it’s so important to go into relationships feeling happy with yourself in the first place. We should all come to relationships to give, not to fill up old insecurities we have. Thanks for your insight Reena x
that’s true. but in a relationship you still ideally want to have that loving, nurturing partner that meets your needs because you are kind of parenting each other. if you didn’t have that model you have to rebuild it for yourself and no one can do it for you although people (like you!) can help! and then a relationship becomes about supporting each other be your best selves rather than co-dependency which – as you say – is about filling each others insecurity holes. you have to be whole!
GUESS IVE BEEN DOIN.IT RIGHT MY WHOLE LIFE…GREAT TO KNOW…FALL DOWN…GET BACK UP…FALL DOWN…GET BACKUP….
You have an incredible amount of emotional intelligence and understanding, I am continually impressed and motivated by what you write!
Thanks Saz! That’s lovely to hear. x
This article got posted at the most needed time for me! Im a 22 year old, dealing with so many familiar situations in different aspects of my life, and reading this article created a sparkle in my head and heart. It would be a great help if I’d actually get a reply from you or your crew, and i will be thrilled to discuss my situation with you and get some great feed back from you guys.
But anyhow, i love you very much and thanks for all the great help :)
Hey Roshanak, I’m really glad this post resonated with you. I think there’s a tendency when things go wrong for us to feel completely alone in our suffering. I like to write these to show people that loss and pain are something we ALL go through in relationships, but we can also experience so much joy from them, especially when we feel like we have control in this area. Thanks for your kind words, all the best x
I spent the better part of a decade in a state of rejection by “the one that got away.” One day I just woke up and instead of thinking, “oh poor me, rejected again, why even bother with anyone new,” I said to myself, “he’s never going to change, or come around, nor is he going to realize exactly what he missed.” It was when I realized how perfectly awesome I am that I was able to let go, kick that ass to the curb and start doing really brave things with my love life (like joining this program!)…This is a great post, Matt. I’m going to share it with my single girlfriends. :-)
Thank you so much CC, that’s exactly it. We have to shift the focus from the other person to ourselves. We could spend forever wondering “what is he thinking? Why did he do this? What if he changed his mind?” – This path only leads us to misery and powerlessness. I love to see the way you’ve taken control again, all the best x
the same happened to me!! It’s the best feeling when i realized that HE was the one who was loosing, not me!
Thank you Matthew so much for reading our minds and translating it into just the perfect words to give hope and understanding on this complex matter: LOVE ! Thank you so much!
Oh, I have a story! It happened just yesterday.
For the past few months I’ve been re-dating an ex: a great guy I always felt was important to me, and he felt the same way about me. I even woke up crying tears of joy once over finally feeling love again. We used to talk all day and night but yesterday I saw him with another woman -his girlfriend.
They sat behind me at the theatre so after a few minutes of feeling… like out of my own body (I couldn’t focus on anything!) I made it a point to bee seen as cheery. Thankfully I was surrounded by friends, and it was an amateur play so there was lots of interaction and joking around going on.
Hey Mina, glad to managed to handle that tough situation! I think this guy proved that he’s not someone you want to be with long-term. Keep up your momentum and leave him behind. It will be hard as first, but you’ll be better off in the end. x
After another rejection last night, this is just what I needed this morning. It’s so easy to forget how resilient I am and how much I have learned. Five years ago I left an abusive marriage. I’ve been single since with repeated failures in my dating life (repeated is sort of an understatement! lol). To finally be at a place where I ultimately can get to: “He has no idea how amazing I am…missed opportunity.” is no easy thing sometimes, yet I get there.
Thanks for the reminder. Now it’s finding strategies to tap into some patience until the “when” happens. If anyone has words of wisdom on that, send them my way!
Hey Alice, i’m so glad to hear you came out the other side of your relationship. If someone can go through that and still be ready to find love again, I know they have the stuff it takes to get everything they want. Thank you for sharing this x
Thanks for this post Matthew – it’s very timely as I’m going through this right now. Having been on about 15 dates with a guy, all of which seemed to go well, he just went cold on me. I have no idea why this happened and it’s left me feeling incredibly low.
I understand everything your post says and wish I could have the high value mindset you describe but unfortunately when you’re left without answers I think it is easier for the mind to edge towards to low value mindset. Hopefully, with a bit more time, I’ll be ready for a more positive outlook
Hi Alison, thanks for sharing this. I know, the moment you experience failure you feel the furthest away from a high value mindset. But paradoxically, this is exactly the time when you need one! As I said in the post, sometimes we can do everything right and still experience rejection. All this guy did was showed himself not to be your perfect guy. Now you don’t have to waste anymore time on someone that was wrong for you. x
Hi, I do thank you for your posts, you teach me lots of things though we come from different cultures and backgrounds, I try to adjust some of your ideas to our culture. Well, I must say, I`ve got rejected rarely in my dates, I`ve even called myself the most wanted girl! But it`s me who can`t find the one, I want and that is frustrating. I started to date from when I got 24, and now I`m 28.Now, I do blame myself when I see my friends getting married one by one( except one, others compromised to less cuz they think they won`t find a better guy) Each time, I go on a date, I come back home angry, disappointed with some voices in my head saying: girl accept him, he will get changed, then the other voices bring some other reasons asking me: DO you wanna compromise to less like your mom and your three aunts? So,I cry a lil bit, then sleep to forget and I try to call the date an experience and grab the idea that I do will find him soon! TO get recovered from the anger of not finding him, I do read some articles, I watch some dvds about marriage and dating. I have an incredible boyfriend from Switzerland who just sometimes hints some facts about guys to me, and tells me don`t judge guys, don`t hate them. Now you are becoming my second boyfriend who is teaching me some more lessons about guys and I do appreciate that.
Wish you the best!
You are doing the right thing by not compromising. I think being single is too often attached with stigma and the idea of loneliness, when it really shouldn’t be. The reason so many people compromise is because they think being single is something to be ashamed of, when really it can be the most passionate, fun, exciting, adventurous experience you’ll ever have. Enjoy the process of meeting new people. Single people have limitless possibilities; explore them, find out what you like and don’t like. Make yourself the envy of all your friends in relationships! I wish you all the best x
Thx for your immediate answer. I can imagine how busy you can be.Actually, I must say that I am the envy of my friends in all aspects except my relation with guys, haha. I am student of PhD in Paris. And, when I was 24 yrs, I started to teach in a well-known university, back home. But, I started teaching when I was 19.The problem is that I understand too much! My intelligence test was 120 from 100.And, I am picky and perfectionist. That`s really dangerous. I suggest you to write an article on ” being perfectionist”.
And this is me who is put a blame on myself, cuz all my life I have studied and taught and didn`t focus on getting to know guys. And the result now is ”being lonely”. Here in Paris, the cultures are mixed and now I am more lost to decide who really I want. If you could have imagined how many counselors I`ve met to help me to find the criteria I want in a guy! They helped me just 30% but not so much!Each one said something!
Anyways, I wish you a great week, and work well!
I live having the attitude of not a one in a million kind of woman but a once in a lifetime woman!
And I’m sure you are one Sarah ;) Thanks for posting x
Awesome post. Though I have a problem knowing when my intuition tells me to slow down if it´s my fear of rejection/connection or the fact that the other person is simply not ready. Any tips? =D
If you tend to move too quickly, it may be because you’re trying to artificially speed things up in order to feel more secure in the relationship. Or, as you say, it could be that you put on the brakes because you get frightened that you might get too into him and then lose him later. Just focus on being the most fun he’s had every time he sees you. In the in-between times, let him think about how much he’d like to call you and have fun again. Meet other people and work on other areas of your life so that your life doesn’t become all focused around one guy. Thanks malin, all the best x
Thank you very much for taking the time to respond =)
How much time do you give with the in-between? I find I give it too long before acknowledging that he’s a waste of my time or just not interested. It’s been a series of guys who like to keep me on the back burner. So I’m me and fun and the best I can be when with them, but they still aren’t making any movement toward making me a choice. When do you walk away? How do you know it’s time?
Yes, Matthew, How much time do you give it, as Alcie asked? Even though you may be exclusively intimate with a guy after three months, but you are aware he still visits dating sites everyday, how do you handle that? Even when you have such great fun every time you are together and you have a great group of friends and a very active life outside of him and you know you are the best thing to ever come along and will be the best thing to ever come along?
I have never really been rejected from any guy I liked… But I have been in a situation where a guy would show me so much attention and affection but would never tell me directly, he would show sooooo much attention and care even look at me smile and treat me very specially and suddenly back off, and then starts again showing so much attention and it goes on and on and he would never stop until now.. And I was wondering why isnt he direct?… why doesnt he just tell me?! he isnt shy btw!! but I personally believe that the more late he is the more he will be losing cz he may not find me later. I rly like ALL your articles Matt they always relate to me somehow :)
I enjoyed reading this article matthew.I had this experience earlier this year not with one but a couple of dates!!Which lead me to your videos.The thing i realized that it was ok,That yes we all have things to work on,But i’m a dynamic woman no matter what anyone things of me i deserve someone that will accept me and all of me,Thanks again for insight.
I love this post. You really are so motivating. Because of you I am always speaking of being high value.
Hi, thanks… It’s sure, we have to be stronger inside, and I know what are my values, but… if you’ve been rejected for any reason… there could be a wall around you, and now I feel that Im not easily moving out of it… do you understand it? :) Its not easy at all to show my true and wonderful self to any man, not mention if Im in love… what you think of it? How could I share myself with courage? Bye
This post just hit the nail on the head, it’s so relateable! Being left wondering and in doubt with yourself is so mind boggling. Then on second thoughts, I shouldn’t doubt my ability of being able to find someone who would truly love me. Thanks Matthew and crew!
I,ve been in a relationship now for about 6 months with a guy who drives truck for a living. he is not here very often, and I actually have not had the chance to see him for over 3 months now. I hear from him regularly, if not often and he always expresses his wish to see me again soon. But there are many times I have sent him a text to ask a simple question or make small talk again and get absolutely no reply.
I am trying to stay focused on the good I have to offer and am always upbeat and happy when I do hear from him. I am just wondering how to interpret his behavior. Just a very difficult relationship, I know.
Your post today has reminded me that I need to focus on my happiness, more than what will become of this relationship. Thanks for the reminder.
Maybe you have to be careful with that … And say to him what you need and expect from one relationship. If you don’t feel good and that does not suit you, it might be better to cut it. I have similarly been in contact with a guy who would always “love to see me”, but was far and didn’t have that “possibility”, and finally (after about 2 years) it ended in the situation that I was deeply in love, and he just “really liked me very much” – which I never understood what meant …
My last relationship with a guy was difficult in the sense that we were not in the same place emotionally in our lives even though we had a chemistry between each other. It was better that we part ways, but even though our encounter was very short, I learned a couple of things about myself. First, I learned exactly what kind of relationship I am looking for, and secondly, I realized the problem early enough and I did not allow myself to fall too deeply in love, knowing that it would be so much harder to let go.
Thanks for posting this, Matthew. I really needed it. I’m in high school, so it’s different from other people commenting, but I recently asked out a guy I’ve had a crush on for two years. I was just starting to get comfortable talking to him in general and I realize now that asking him out was way too premature. He said he was busy and I swear he even raised an eyebrow when I asked. I’m convinced he just didn’t want to say the words. He is a nice guy. I haven’t spoken to him since, vice versa. I’d call that a failure. Now I’m trying to resurface from it. Not easy…
Thanks for this post. I’ve had more than my fair share of dating flops & rejections.I used to blame myself when a guy stopped calling or went cold on me. I now it wasn’t always down to me. I always want know why and understand Iwon’t get the answers I want.
I find it hard to be positive and think finding the right guy won’t happen for me,when everyone around me seems blissfully happy – what can I do?
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