Ah, rejection: the outcome we all dread, the creator of all embarrassment, and the reason for countless pints of ice cream sold worldwide. You may believe rejection is the worst possible thing that can happen to you, but turns out rejection isn’t all bad. At this point, you may be calling BS. I definitely did, but then I met Sophie Odrich, an expert on rejection, who explained how “rejection can make someone stronger and make someone develop a better work ethic”.
Sophie Odrich is a student here at Boston University who has faced rejection too many times. You’d expect her to be in a corner wallowing her life away and constantly questioning her self-worth, wouldn’t you? Well, she’s actually quite the opposite. Sophie is a go-getter and its constantly pushing herself to reach her fullest potential. Her work ethic has gone so far that teachers have posted her assignments on Blackboard as examples and clubs have praised her commitment. So how did the girl who was rejected from the a-cappella club, the volleyball team, the dance team, the Life School at New York, the peer leadership program, and several colleges become the most honorable and involved student?
Rejection is deemed to be purely negative, but Sophie explains how rejection is more about perspective. She says, “You can focus on the downside of not being admitted into whichever college or group you’re trying to get into, but it’s all about how you use that bad news. If you decide to look at it as a new opportunity to try something new, being rejected can be a positive thing and lead you on a better path.” It’s all about realizing a “no” right now could lead to a better “yes” in the future.
It’s also about realizing that nothing is wrong with you. It is easy to cry and wonder what you did wrong. However, experiences like these let you know what you want and don’t want in life. Do you want to try even harder will all your might or are you not passionate enough about it and willing to find a new path? When talking to Sophie she told the story of Michael Jordan and his will to work harder after being rejected. He is “a basketball player who was rejected from his high school varsity basketball team his sophomore year. He eventually picked himself back up and turned the cut into motivation. Jordan said that, ‘Whenever I was working out and got tired and figured I ought to stop, I’d close my eyes and see that list in the locker room without my name on it and that usually got me going again.’ He spent his sophomore year in high school playing on the JV team and eventually next year he got into varsity and became the high school’s best player averaging more than 20 points a game.” Jordan’s rejection fueled his motivation and ambition.
Positions, jobs, and people can be taken away, but determination and passion can’t. Those things are embedded in your personality and it is up to you to let them manifest and flourish within your life. Life’s too short to spend too much time wallowing, so get out there and try again – and try harder. Our expert and friend here at BU, Sophie, claimed, “Rejection has been a component that has made me who I am today.” We are a construct of how we interpret and respond to experiences life presents us with. That is why we are all unique; no two people have had the same experiences in life. Therefore, you must express your individuality into the world, and even if rejected, you must continue because you have glorious talents that cannot be recreated by any other. So invent, create, write, sign up, and try. Do this and I promise you, your life will be nothing less than purely remarkable.