Why Rejection Can Be Good For You

Hey, lovely friends!

I want to talk about rejection today because, let’s be real, we all face it at some point of our lives in one way or another. Whether is be in a context that is professional, social, or romantic – rejection can be so hard to deal with.

Before we start, meet Elena!

Screen Shot 2019-04-09 at 8.43.27 PM
Credit: Elena By Design

Elena is an amazing artist, a student in the same advertising program and AAF chapter that I’m in, and someone I’m lucky enough to call my friend. Today’s post features a few amazing pieces of work created by her. Please go follow her art Instagram, @elena_by_design, and give her some love. You won’t want to miss all of the amazing work that she creates in the future to expand upon her already stunning collection!

Now, onto the rest of the post!

You don’t ever want rejection, but it often teaches you a ton.

Credit: Elena By Design

Real talk: we always go into things with the hope that it’ll work out. You don’t apply to a job that you want a rejection from, and you don’t put yourself out there with somebody hoping that they’ll turn you down. You go for things because you want them. So, naturally, it sucks when you don’t get them. 

There will always be a normal period of not-so-happy thoughts when you first find out about your rejection. Whether that be a “thank you for your interest” email from a job you really wanted, or an “I think we should see other people” talk from somebody you had strong feelings for, your first reaction isn’t going to be this “ready-for-growth” mentality. You might be angry, you might cry, you might be numb for a while. However, after working through that upset emotion (see my latest post, How To Handle Being Upset In A Healthy Way) , whether it takes 2 minutes, 2 hours, 2 weeks, or 2 months (depending on the situation), it’s time to find a lesson or insight in there somewhere. 

When the situation allows, view rejection as a challenge. 

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Credit: Elena By Design

So, you didn’t get the internship or job that you really wanted? That rejection letter can be a motivator for you. You can continue working hard, beefing up your résumé, and networking with new people. You can take the skills and experiences that you learned through interviewing for, or even just applying to that position and use them to be better prepared for your next interview or application. You can use this rejection as a motivation to keep working hard to improve your chances when applying again to that company (if that’s something you’re interested in) now having a better idea of what they are looking for. Rejection can be used as a challenge, and even as a motivator, if you don’t take it with spite or a bad attitude.

Always view rejection as a learning experience. 

Credit: Elena By Design

I believe that rejection is ALWAYS a learning experience. Trying new things can lead to rejection many times, but even a rejection can be a success because you tried something new and likely out of your comfort zone. Go you! The new experiences you had or skills you learned don’t just end with that experience. Those skills may be what lead you to thrive in a new situation. You really never know.

Rejection can also teach you what you want and what you don’t out of certain situations. Every guy that I’ve dated, regardless of who ended it or how it ended, has shown me things that I really do want in a partner, and they’ve all also taught me what I really don’t want in a partner. I’m sure I’ve done the same for all of them. I think it is so important to find a lesson in everything. 

Also, it’s really cool to see how you build resilience through experiencing rejection. Learning how to pick yourself up and keep on keepin’ on is an invaluable skill that will definitely help you out in life.

Every good success story features (many) more than one bump in the road. 

Credit: Elena By Design

Think about it. All of the most inspirational success stories contain struggle, pain, confusion, and – you guessed it – rejection. Your story will also be great, and in order for it to get there, it needs to have some of these elements in there (if not all). Rejection makes for really good inspirational stories in the long-run, and being able to be vulnerable about experiences with rejection can bring you close to others who may have had similar experiences.

Sometimes, rejection puts you right where you need to be.

Credit: Elena By Design

When I applied to college, I got into 7 out of the 8 schools that I applied to. The one school that I didn’t get into was one that I would’ve really wanted to have gone to. I think that if I got in, I would have gone there. UIUC is a place that, in the 3 years that I’ve been here, has made me grow in ways that I could have never imagined. This is the place I needed to be, and if I hadn’t gotten rejected from that other school, who knows if I would have come here and done the cool stuff that I’ve been able to do because I am here. That rejection led me right where I needed to be, and I sure am glad that things happened this way.

Songs for you to listen to when overcoming a rejection. 

Would this be Indira’s Inner Beauty without a playlist? Nope, it wouldn’t. Here are 8 songs that I find myself listening to when I need some uplifting and empowering vibes post-rejection.


1. “Bird Set Free” by Sia

“I don’t care if I sing off key.
I find myself in my melodies.”


2. “Flames” by David Guetta & Sia 

“Go, go, go,
Figure it out, figure it out, but don’t stop moving.
Go, go, go,
Figure it out, figure it out, you can do this.”


3. “Hay Algo En Mi” by Miriam Rodríguez

“Y aun sigo aquí
Dispuesta a levantarme.
Puedo ser
Quien quiera imaginarme.”

English Translation:

“And I’m still here
Ready to pick myself up.
I can be
Whoever I want to imagine.”


4. “High Hopes” by Panic! At The Disco

“Didn’t have a dime, but I always had a vision.
Always had high, high hopes”


5. “How Far I’ll Go” by Alessia Cara

“The line where the sky meets the sea? It calls me.
And no one knows how far it goes.
If the wind in my sail on the sea stays behind me,
One day I’ll know, if I go there’s just no telling how far I’ll go.”


6. “La Puerta Violeta” by Rozalén

“Tengo la necesidad de girar la llave y no mirar atrás.
Así que dibujé una puerta violeta en la pared,
Y al entrar me liberé.

Sé lo que no quiero,
Ahora estoy a salvo.”

English Translation:

“I have the need to turn the key and not look back.
So I drew a violet door on the wall,
And upon entering I liberated myself.

I know what I don’t want,
Now I am safe.”


7. “Somos” by Operación Triunfo 2018

Somos pueblo sin bandera,
Sin límites, ni fronteras.
Somos la ciudad de la alegría,
Y si te falta aquí tienes la mía.
Somos la ciudad valiente.”

English Translation:

“We are the village without a flag
Without limits or borders.
We are the city of joy,
And if you’re missing it, here you have mine.
We are the brave city.”


8. “This Is Me” by Keala Settle

“I am brave, I am bruised,
I am who I’m meant to be, this is me.”

Well, that’s what we’ve got today, my friends. Please be sure to go follow Elena on Instagram and support her amazing art. Lift up talented women, y’all.

With so much love,





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