It is a truth universally acknowledged that being rejected by a guy hurts. And it hurts bad. But does life really need to come to a standstill because of it?
Do you want to know how to handle rejection from a guy without crumbling on the inside each time? Are there healthy, actionable steps you can take to not only deal with the broken heart that comes with the package of being rejected but also to emerge a better, healthier person?
But how to handle rejection from a guy, especially when it’s a bolt from the blue? What do you do when you are handed a plain and polite “No” when you had expected an excited and joyous “Yes” from the person you had been not-so-secretly crushing on?
Romantic rejection depression can hit you hard in such situations. So what does one do? The answer, my friend, lies in making the right choices — at least according to clinical psychologist and social worker Devaleena Ghosh (M.Res., Manchester University), founder of Kornash: The Lifestyle Management School, who specializes in couples counseling and family therapy.
Listed below are eight actionable strategies devised by experts that can help you deal with being rejected by a guy without losing your cool:
1. Get to the root of your feelings
Man is a social animal. It is one of the first things we learned in school as kids. What this translates to is basically a need to care for and be cared for by someone in return. This is simply because, as humans, we evolved to stay in groups in order to increase our chances of survival. This is the need our society is based upon. So, what happens when someone rejects us? The romantic rejection depression hits, that’s what.
Heartbreak can change you as a person. When a guy rejects us, a part of our brain — one that is primal and designed to look for companionship to survive — tends to take it personally.
This is why we struggle to handle rejection from a guy gracefully. While this is true for everyone, for some people rejection hurts more than others.
This may be because they grew up seeing and engaging with unhealthy connections, leading to attachment issues.
People who come from problematic or abusive homes tend to take rejection especially hard because of this reason. This is because they grew up in environments that often made them feel unloved and uncared for.
So, this creates a feeling of insecurity that won’t let you get over the rejection from a crush too easily.
So, if while handling rejection from a guy, you realize that you seem to be taking it harder than others, maybe it is time to introspect and discover whether such feelings stem from personal insecurities.
If you want to know how to handle rejection from a guy, you need to realize that this is one of the first steps to take.
This way, you can begin to work on yourself accordingly and even get the help that you may need to not only handle rejection from a guy gracefully but also heal and emerge as a stronger person.
2. Invest in self-care
It is not easy to respond to rejection with dignity. Article after article about how to handle rejection from a guy on the internet, often tend to ask you to engage in activities that constitute self-care till the entire concept seems to start sounding like a fad.
But just because it sounds cheesy or cliche, it doesn’t make it any less true or important.
Investing time, effort and, if possible, money, into self-care is important.
Often we are so caught up in buying things and pulling cute stunts for our crushes and loved ones, we tend to forget that we deserve to have pleasant things and experiences too.
Some of us are built to give too much of ourselves into a relationship, even if it is one-sided.
As nice as it is to do cute things for our boos and baes, it is equally if not more, important to offer ourselves similar pleasantries.
This may mean doing anything from making ourselves a nice dinner to buying bath bombs and scented candles to going on a solo trip.
Or it might simply mean taking a day off to not just celebrate someone else’s favorite things, but yours. Go shopping, watch a movie you like that your crush doesn’t, go to a carnival, and gorge on corndogs till you’re bursting at the seams with all that lovely dopamine.
Investing in yourself is the best way to get over rejection from a crush and bid romantic rejection depression goodbye.
3. Make time for yourself
A lot of us often tend to jump from relationship to relationship without taking a breather. This is especially true for people who let themselves become used to being with the same person for a long time. Being in a relationship becomes their normal, their familiar territory. It goes without saying that this is not, of course, the healthiest thing to do.
Being able to spend time with yourself and enjoying your own company is important if you want to heal your heart after a rejection. It is why people often ask us to love ourselves before we love others.
When wondering how to handle rejection from a guy, it is important to realize that being cared for by a person makes it significantly easier to love our own selves, it makes it that much more important to work on ourselves after a breakup or a rejection from a crush.
This ensures that we get to spend time with our own feelings, introspect on our actions and desires, and, finally, break any toxic or unhealthy patterns we may have developed over the years we spent chasing after people.
Basically, you get to walk away with your head held high, making it a surefire strategy to handle rejection from a guy gracefully.
4. Hang out with loved ones
Wondering how to handle rejection from a guy? Hanging out with close friends and family may just do the trick. This is an often underrated technique to deal with feelings of being unloved and unworthy and to get over rejection from a crush. Spend time with people you know care about you.
If it is not possible to do it physically, do it virtually. Plan a Netflix party, bring out your best wine and have a girls’ night in. Catch up with each other on the phone.
Be it for hours or mere minutes, spending time with people you are close to can reinstate your courage and confidence, all the while reminding you that while one person may have rejected you, you are loved and appreciated by many others.
Take a bit of time out before starting to date again
Like I mentioned before, jumping from crush to crush and relationship to relationship is not the healthiest way to move on.
Experts agree that while it is healthy to develop romantic feelings for someone even after being rejected by someone else, it is important to take a bit of time before letting such feelings wash over you.
Sure, love is not something you can control. But you can control yourself. If a rejection hits you especially hard, take time to introspect, indulge, and build your self-worth back up before jumping on the first chance to profess your undying love for the next person.
5. Be kind to yourself
Often when we see our peers move on from rejections in the blink of an eye even as we are still busy building blanket forts to get over our rejection from a crush, we tend to start blaming ourselves for being weak for not being able to get over someone who doesn’t love us back.
How does everyone around you seem to know how to handle rejection from a guy when you are still losing yourself at the bottom of neverending tequila shots with huge helpings of ice cream?
Even if you are not able to handle rejection from a guy gracefully, this is the time to remind yourself that emotions do not make you weak.
They make you who you are — a kind, empathetic, and romantic person. Even if our hurt feelings stem from insecurity, know that it is not something to blame ourselves for. Instead, it is a chance to get to know ourselves better and get to the root of the problem.
So, when you go through the heartbreak that accompanies rejection, remember to be kind to yourself. One good idea is to remind yourself to treat yourself like you would treat your best friend if they were rejected.
You wouldn’t laugh at them. You wouldn’t call them weak. You wouldn’t let them wallow in self-pity and say things like, “I keep getting rejected by guys. Is there something wrong with me?”
Instead, you would remind them that they are loved and that they deserve to be loved. Do the same for yourself. After all, if you won’t have your own back, who will?
6. Work on yourself
Indulging and pampering yourself is all well and good. Spending time to introspect on yourself and your behavior is great too. But it’s of no use if you do not take the lessons heartbreak taught you about yourself and start to work on them, yet still keep thinking,
“I keep getting rejected by guys”. If it is insecurity and abandonment issues, take the help of a professional.
If it is body-related insecurity, question where it stems from and then work on being healthier. If losing weight seems like something that can help, do it. If you feel you could do better in your career, work on it.
Don’t make it about the rejection. Don’t work on yourself just so you can catch the eye of your crush. Do it for you.
Work on yourself so you can feel better mentally, emotionally, and physically. Fixing what you don’t quite approve of in yourself and addressing internalized mental health issues and prejudices against yourself — while simultaneously being kind to yourself — can work wonders when it comes to increasing your sense of self-worth and self-confidence.
7. Pick up a new hobby
So, you said “I love you” but got handed a rejection in return. If there is one thing we know about heartbreak and sadness, it is that distractions can work wonders.
No, I am not asking you to stop dealing with the process entirely. But focusing too much on it can drag you and your mental health down a deep, dark rabbit hole.
Like in the case of everything else, balance is key. Deal with your feelings but also distract yourself when you feel yourself sinking. Pick up a new hobby. Learn crocheting.
Volunteer at the local animal shelter and befriend the grumpy senior cat. Learn a new language or to play the guitar. Channel your feelings. Work on your interests. Write the novel you had been meaning to — maybe the heartbreak will help you feel the emotions of your characters better.
Basically, remind yourself of the things you like, the activities you enjoy, the things that have been gathering dust on your bucket list, and do them. And don’t just do them half-heartedly. Invest time and effort into it. And you will emerge from the experience a more sorted, self-aware person.
8. Don’t indulge in too much of anything
Last but definitely not the least important thing to do, is to remember not to overindulge. Invest in self-care but don’t empty your bank account while at it. Take time off to go on a vacation but try not to put your job in jeopardy.
Spend time with friends but don’t forget that both you and they have a life outside of your friendships. And definitely do not indulge in self-pity.
It is one thing to be kind to ourselves and another thing entirely to baby ourselves so much that we forget that we are strong, independent beings capable of dealing with a thousand heartbreaks without shattering into a million pieces.
So, there you have it. 9 action-driven and expert endorsed strategies you can implement to help bring yourself out of the dark pit you’ve sunk into after being rejected by a guy.
But while all of this is important, what is most essential is to remember to breathe. To remind yourself that you have survived every tragedy and horror you have faced in your life up until this point. One rejection cannot destroy you. You’re so much stronger than that.
You’ve got this.
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