ADHD APPROVED | Audition Audition Audition
Updated: Mar 25
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I’ve never handled rejection well. Whenever it happens, especially professionally, I become deeply upset until I forget that I’m meant to be upset. It’s the only time my poor memory is good for something. One of the lesser-known symptoms of ADHD is rejection-sensitive dysphoria. I am personally affected by this symptom, and so rejection leaves me in a darker mood than someone might expect. As such, I’ve spent a great deal of time and energy learning how to deal with it. For me, the best solution is the one I mentioned earlier- my forgetfulness means that my feelings about rejection are impermanent, and there’s nothing better for a bad mood than the knowledge that it’ll go away soon. Typically, all I need is a fun distraction for an hour or so and then I’m good to go. But not everyone is able to utilize their forgetfulness like that.
There are other ways to help cope with both personal and professional rejection. Melissa Dawn of Entrepreneur recommends many solutions. Included among those is that you allow yourself time to grieve. I agree with this entirely; our current society insists on always moving, but there are times where you need to grieve for a lost opportunity. Dawn says to “let yourself feel the anger, sadness, disbelief or even shame” of the rejection. She recommends taking a long walk or journaling your experiences to help you release your frustrations. Without the past rejection weighing you down, you’ll probably find the next opportunity easier to face.
Dawn also recommends using rejection as an opportunity to learn. Cassandra "Cassie" Borgella, an actress, and businesswoman says that she, too, tries to look at rejection through a positive lens. She often thinks that if she’s rejected, it means that “this situation wasn’t meant for me, it was meant for someone else”. She doesn’t remember any particular rejections, but for her, a personal rejection hurts far more than a professional one. Cassie thinks it’s important to embrace rejection to some extent. “Once you’re able to accept that it’s part of life, it helps you change your mind / shift your perspective and continue to do what you want in life.” Cassie has been working as an actress for several years. Currently, you can catch her doing background work on the Gossip Girl reboot and in the upcoming short film Indigo Blooms.
Looking at rejection as a positive can certainly help, and of course, it’s better than wallowing in your feelings. There are other things that can help, too. Talking it out with your support group, developing your skills, and learning how to accept a ‘no’ are all important steps to take when dealing with rejection. Perhaps all you need is a distraction, or maybe you need to listen to a sad song, but however you choose to deal with it, just remember; many people have to apply hundreds of times before a successful interview, make thousands of tweets before one goes viral, be painting for years before they get discovered. You can’t let yourself get down because of one rejection, or even a series of them.
Rebecca Hirsch is a New York-based creative writer. She writes industry posts for KIRUNIVERSE. When not writing, She plays video games and listens to podcasts. Follow her on Twitter!