Can rejection be good for you?

By Tabi Slick

Have you ever found yourself reminiscing about what could have been if you'd just been stronger or braver?

This past weekend I had an event where not a lot of people showed up. I had put a lot of work into it, advertising and coming up with my discussion talking points. I even made a beautiful gift basket. Alas, no one wanted it.

This got me thinking about the times as an early writer where this would've immobilized me. Where the rejection would've been too much that I'd vow never to do it again. This happened many times, particularly after writing my first book. I remember the feeling of being a small fish in a vast sea while in New York City. I was wondering how to even start to have a conversation about my writing.

So afraid of being rejected, I aimlessly walked the streets as a silent observer, paralyzed by my own fear. I never made it into any bookstores and maybe handed out my business cards to all of two people. Of course, this was after much shaking and nearly coming to tears.

Years later, I've had to tackle greater obstacles than just talking to people about my writing and it got me wondering. Can facing probable rejection be good for you? So I went digging and it turns out that not only facing probable rejection can be good, it's actually beneficial.

According to studies, not only does rejection teach you patience, which is a good skill to have anyway, it also makes us stronger and gives us opportunities to grow. In fact, the more we face the risk of rejection, the more likely we are to succeed. This largely has to do with our attitudes about rejection.

Fear will chase you to the point where you either fall to the ground or turn around and face it straight on.

If the journey through authorship has taught me anything it's that fear will chase you to the point where you either fall to the ground or you turn around and face it straight on. I'm grateful for the many rejections I've received, because it has taught me what I'm made out of. It's stronger stuff than fear. I will continue to take on rejection with a smile, to learn from my mistakes and improve.

I'm grateful for those who have believed in me throughout the years and for those who've taken a chance on me. It's what's made me what I am today. It's what's allowed me to speak to a small group about the history of the Ottoman Empire, to make others laugh, and it even lead to me selling a single book to someone who had just walked in as I was leaving.

Rejection will either make or break us. It will show us our greatest weakness or reveal to us our greatest strengths. I choose to believe it will make us better, to shape us into the best versions of ourselves.

So when you run into a situation where your heart is beating faster than a train, tuck in and enjoy the ride. You never actually know where it will lead you.




TABI SLICK is an award-winning author of paranormal and historical fantasy. Her works include: "Tompkin's School: For The Extraordinarily Talented", "Tompkin's School: For the Dearly Departed", the novella "Unforgivables", and "Timur's Escape". When she's not writing, she's often found either researching or with her nose stuck in a book. 


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Resources:
[1] DiGiulio, Sarah. Why getting better about being rejected can help you succeed in lifeNBC News. March 20, 2019.

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