We’ve all been there – hopelessly in love and hopeful about a happy ending with a specific someone only to not have this person return the same feelings. Rejection, whether your romantic interest hands it over to you nicely or rudely, in words or actions is ruthless. It’s heart breaking, its shame inducing, it makes you feel low as if you are not valuable.

However, you shouldn’t let rejection overpower you, no matter how bad it feels. Instead, your goal should be to deal with it and come out better on the other side. How can you do that? Let’s help you out. Here are 10 steps that can help you deal with rejection:

1 – Accept rejection

When rejection hits you, it can be difficult to not receive it with a frown. However, the first step to coping with it lies in accepting it. If you continue to reject rejection, you’ll only be making a fool out of yourself and letting the opposite person take advantage of you.

This is why you must accept rejection without harboring any feelings of rage or revenge. You see, you should respect the decision of the person who has rejected you. Everyone has the right to choose whom they want to be with and what they want to do with their life. You cannot force anyone to live on your terms.

2 – Acknowledge your feelings

Of course, rejection acceptance doesn’t happen with a hearty smile. If anything, it makes you feel defeated like every thread that constructed your fabric of confidence and hope has been pulled out, shredded all at once.

Naturally, it’s not uncommon to feel anger, guilt, regret, sadness over being rejected. Your feelings are valid so don’t suppress them. Don’t nurture them either, just address them. Feel the negativity for a while and then let it all go. After all, the only way to process your emotions and get rid of bad ones is by first acknowledging their existence.

3 – Don’t take it personally

When someone rejects you, it doesn’t mean that you are ugly or that you don’t have a good personality. It doesn’t mean that that person has something against you in particular. But it also doesn’t mean that there is something wrong with the opposite person.

It’s just that you two didn’t fit and had different expectations out of life. So, don’t take rejection personally. It’s a product of different choices, not of you being not good enough. Don’t beat yourself or start plotting a revenge scheme because someone decided to choose someone that wasn’t you.

4 – Stay away for some time

It can hurt to repeatedly come face to face with someone who rejected you or even the things that remind you of that person. Your best bet is to take some time to recover, at a place far away from this person. This will allow you to process your feelings.

This will also be a great move because by putting distance between you and the person who rejected you, you won’t get a chance to give an impulse reaction. You won’t be able to get angry on this person or say stuff that you’d surely regret later.

5 – Take care of yourself

You’ve been through some serious heartbreak and the first person who will help you heal is your own self. Take care of yourself. You can do this by occasionally indulging in comfort foods. However, be sure to not make it into a long-term habit.

Choose healthier self-care options such as exercising more. Exercise will boost your mood too and relax you as well. Go out to places that you enjoy such as the cinema or the museum. Self-care definitely doesn’t mean that you start visiting the bar more often just to drown the hurt you are feeling.

6 – Boost your self confidence

Surely, with rejection your self-confidence would have greatly suffered. You may have counted all your flaws and looked at all the ways you just weren’t enough. While the initial hit at your confidence can be challenging, almost impossible to avoid, don’t let the low confidence linger.

Build up your confidence again by counting the good that you have in life. Look at all that makes you better. Invest in pursuing your interests as these often make you feel confident about something. Don’t hang out with those who have the innate ability to make you feel worse about yourself. Don’t let this experience damage your confidence completely.

7 – Surround yourself with supportive people

It can get lonely inside your mind with thoughts of worthlessness taking over when you get your heart broken because of rejection. One way to help yourself is by surrounding yourself with friends and family, people who can offer love and support.

At the same time, you must also avoid all sorts of toxic people who point out your flaws and make your self-esteem take a bigger blow. Also stay away from people who try to fuel the burning fire of your negative emotions such as those of rage and anger.

8 – Take some time alone

While it’s a good idea to surround yourself with people who offer positivity, don’t forget to get any alone time that you need. When you completely rely on support, you don’t get the alone time that you need to process your emotions.

However, this depends on the type of person you are. Some people feel better and are able to recover more when with others. On the other hand, other people are able to heal emotionally better when they take some time to spend with no one but their own selves.

9 – Understand you’re not alone

You are not the only person who has passed through this turmoil of rejection, know that. A lot of people are rejected, and they too learn to move on with a smile on their face. If you are feeling alone in your misery though, you can discuss your feelings with someone who has been in the boat.

If you don’t happen to know of anyone who has been rejected, which is unlikely, then you can join support groups. If you’re not in the mood to join such a group in person there are many online communities that you can take part in.

10 – Learn from the experience but don’t let it define you

Last but not the least, learn from the experience. Learn from your past and see when and which type of people you shouldn’t approach. Learn to take signs before it is too late, and you’ve already professed your loved out for someone who has clearly not shown interest in you.

But, at the same time, also know that for some people, the risk is worth taking. Lastly, don’t let that one experience of rejection define you. We all make mistakes, we’re all let down, and everyone of us has been rejected in one way or another by someone.