How to Deal with Job Rejection

Rejection is hard. Whether it be in your relationships or in your jobs, it is never good to hear those words. With jobs in particular, after going through that long, arduous application process and several interviews, it can hit hard, especially in college when you’re surrounded in that job hunt environment. I myself have experience with two internship interviews where I gave my 110% and made it to the last level, but got rejected at the very end; and as expected, it sucked. 

However, rejection does not define you and it is important to keep looking, trying and applying. These are some of the ways I dealt with job rejection.

1. Accept it

It may initially be a shock or completely disheartening but it is important to acknowledge that you did get rejected. Everyone experiences failure at some point in their life, but also know that it is not entirely your fault and it could have been due to a multitude of reasons. Competition is high and companies have been offering fewer openings due to COVID so keep all those factors in mind.

2. Don’t blame yourself

See point one. It can be easy to immediately blame yourself and say that you didn’t practice enough or didn’t talk enough or didn’t ask the right questions, but no one has it all and no one is perfect. Be proud that you put yourself out there in the first place and gave it your best. 

3. Recap 

Walk back through what happened in your interview and try to find out where things went wrong and what went right. It is important to acknowledge this since it is the best way to improve for your next interview. Writing out a list of where things went wrong can help you visualize what you need to improve on so that you can focus on that. 

4. Note down the questions asked

If the interview was for a specific industry you want to pursue, note down the questions they asked you since it is highly likely that you will be asked something similar during other interviews. After this, practice answering these questions in front of the mirror, camera or with a friend. Practice may not reach perfection, but you will be more prepared than you think.

5. Ask for feedback

This is not something every interviewer will give you but still thank them for their time and ask for any feedback they’d like to give you. Most times they will thank you for applying and explain the situation of the company while wishing you the best but sometimes they can give meaningful advice so it is always worth a shot. Additionally, ask for feedback from mentors, peers and career services so that you can get the best help possible. 

6. Keep pursuing more opportunities.

Failure does not define you in any way, but it is a part of life. Things happen for a reason and your time will come with dedication and perseverance so keep pursuing whatever opportunities you find. I can say from personal experience that our interests change and despite not getting something you wanted, newer and greater chances are in your reach. 

Failure breeds resilience. It is only a small chapter of your life and new opportunities will always be out there for you. Keep your head high collegiettes, you got this.