There are some things that nobody loves. Failure is somewhere at the top of that list, between public humiliation and heartbreak. That painful feeling in your chest when you’ve fallen just short of your dream never really goes away. But when you can’t do anything to change what’s happened, here’s a few ways to deal with failure.
1. Distract yourself
When focusing on your failure doesn’t work (it typically doesn’t), take some time away from all the stress in your life. Continuing to put yourself in the same situation again and again only serves as a reminder of what could have been. Instead, distance yourself, even if it is just for a short while. Read a book, watch some TV, mediate, or spend time with friends, whatever it takes to get you into your happy place.
2. Talk to someone
It can be hard to confide in someone if you’re feeling sad, embarrassed or even ashamed, but sometimes just telling someone how you feel can make a huge impact on how you look at a situation of failure.
3. Remember nothing is permanent
No failure is permanent. Maybe you didn’t receive an internship, get into the Greek organizations you wanted to, or make a sports team, but perhaps that one failure will lead you on a path to something better. Trying to put context on a situation that seems like the end of the world might help you to feel less traumatized by it.
4. Make a plan
Sometimes after a rejection, it can feel like we’re stuck in a period of uncertainty. Making a plan can help ease some of that uncertainty and make us feel secure about the future. Start by making a list of things you want to do moving forward, and then one by one check them off.
5. Fake it till you make it
If all else fails, pretending that you’re okay may help you to actually get there. It sounds contradictory, but this one has worked for me plenty of times. Sometimes going through the motions can make everything better. Soon you won’t be faking it anymore and that failure won’t be weighing so heavily on your mind.