I recently experienced a rejection. And if I’m honest with myself, it stings. In the scheme of life it was a low stakes opportunity. But it was still something I was interested in pursuing. I wonder if there ever comes a time when being rejected doesn’t hurt. Probably not, which is probably a good thing.

I’ve had some time to reflect on this recent rejection and I’ve come to realize something. I’ve come to realize what, in particular, upsets me about the whole thing. And it’s this: the feeling of being misunderstood. The rejection itself doesn’t hurt as much as the feeling of misunderstood. And not only being misunderstood, but being told that I was something that I am not. Again, all pretty low stakes stuff (at least in this situation).

The feedback that I received in the context of this particular rejection was all based on the idea that the opportunity wasn’t a good match for me. Which is fine. But it came with a pretty candid assessment about what the rejecting party thought they were rejecting. And the thing that they’re rejecting– that’s not me. It’s just how they see me. And now I can take their perception and be even more self-aware and reflective because of it. And for that I am grateful.

Anyhow, just an opportunity to chew on the stuff of life a bit. Because without reflection, none of these experiences ends up pushing us forward.