How Rejection Makes You More Resilient

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With social media, heartbreaks aren’t just heartbreaks anymore. They’re public magazines of torture. You get to analyze every emotion that follows your not-so-romeo is processing. You see the other women, the drinks, the laughter, compliments of the one who handed you all the pain to shuffle through when it ended.

Lately I've been exploring this with my girls who’ve recently gone through their share of shit shows. Their pain snoops around with sincerity in the archives of my mind for relatable stories. People think when you fall in love you get amnesia about everything that came before…

Newsflash: you don’t. Resilience sloughs off dead skin so you can love again, but scars don’t go anywhere. Sometimes I feel the twenty-one year old Elsa popping out her head to see if it’s safe for her to come out yet.

I always called myself a runner because I was the first to end all my relationships. I was very proud of this fact; I used it to deflect that I was actually scared shitless of getting my heart broken. And it worked. Everyone I dated found me that much more interesting because the thrill of it ending was the backdrop of our romance. At 26, it’s the first time in my life that I find myself persistently unfolding in a relationship.

Rejection is in my opinion, a transformative human experience. When it happens it sucks huevos. But when someone pushes us away from them, they push us closer to ourselves. We become more curious when we’ve been rejected, even if the curiosity forces us to ask questions we don't want the answer to. We become more sensitive to our environment, more aware of the possibilities. Sometimes it has an adverse effect of making us more rigid and unavailable, but that’s just a shell we use to protect the very vulnerable jelly instead.

Defining life moments come from rejection. Whether it’s in a career or a relationship, it fuels us with a deep need for change. Very few things in life dramatically redirect us like rejection. I find it so powerful. I ended up in Austin because of a failed love story. Looking back at it now, I can’t imagine any other outcome that fits me as well. But you never see that in the moment.

No’s light fires under our asses. They force us to look inward for answers--which for some of us is terrifying. You won’t win all the hearts. No matter how much charm you fit in your smile. Thank rejection when it slams the door in your face. Bow to it and kiss the doorknob, because I promise it’ll all make sense when you take a few steps in another direction.