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Anti-Advice: Handling Rejection

We All Struggle With Rejection

Asking someone on a date and being turned down. Being picked last for a pickup sports game. Getting bad news after an interview. Requesting to have your own electric guitar solo in a mariachi band. Clearly I am no stranger to rejection.

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Many of us (myself included) who are seeking jobs as junior devs are getting heavy doses of rejection in large part due to the current state of economy.

I personally have had recent trouble trying to pick myself back up and continue the job hunt with the same vigor I had when I started.

It's been 3 months of rejection. That's a long time!

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But... On the bright side, I've gotten really good at coping with rejection. I want to share with you my tips for dealing with those hard knocks. Let's get started!

Tip #1: Always Blame Others

You may not know this, but a job rejection is basically a personal attack to your ego. The ego is literally the most valuable asset any candidate brings to the table.

Instead of focusing on areas of growth (as the age-old saying goes: growth is for nincompoops), shield your precious ego by blaming anything but yourself. Everything is fair game when it comes to blame:

  • The company (they personally had it out for you most likely)
  • The circumstance (the questions were dumb, the code challenge was pointless)
  • Anyone who cares about you (distractions, the LOT of em')

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What? Did you not get the memo from LinkedIn? All you had to do was:

  • Wake up every day at 4 am
  • Do 4 algorithms before 9am
  • Go for a 12 mile jog to clear your head
  • Send out 10 job applications by 12pm
  • Do a pull request on 3 people's code and fix their stuff
  • Network with 10 recruiters
  • Start a side business
  • Do yoga
  • and repeat this every day for 6 months

It's so easy. You really ought to shame yourself until you start doing this.

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Remember: If you're not hustling, then you should feel bad, because feeling bad is the best and healthiest way of being productive.

Tip #3: Rewards are for Winners.

The LAST thing you want to do is reward yourself for trying. You should encourage WINNING, not TRYING. If you get rejected, don't take a break. Don't go for a walk. Don't eat tasty food. Don't take a day-trip. Rewards for people who aren't rejects.

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Remember: Just because you put yourself out there in the job market and was validated through rejection, does NOT mean you deserve a reward. Don't promote this behavior! Makes me want to vomit just thinking about it.

Tip #4: Need More Emotional Distancing.

Just stop caring. The next rejection won't hurt if you stop caring. It doesn't matter. Nothing matters. I'm pretty sure I read somewhere in Forbes or National Geographic that not only does indifference turn you into a better hustler (which, come on, we all want that), but it makes you look cooler too.

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Bonus points: If you can also not discuss your feelings with anyone. We all know that if you don't talk about your problems, you don't have any problems!

Tip #6: Don't think, just do it.

Have you seen your social media feed lately? It's full of people who are doing AMAZING things ALL THE TIME. Those people CLEARLY just do awesome things, and certainly haven't spent time reflecting on their failures.

Don't reflect on your rejection, as it might make you feel insecure, which could potentially hurt your ego (you didn't forget about your precious ego, did you?).

I mean really, what could you possibly learn from reflecting on your past experience while it's still fresh in your mind? Nothing, that's what!


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In Conclusion

I hope this unsolicited advice finds you well. As some final remarks, please make sure you:

  • Hustle at the cost of your personal health
  • Do not help others who are also struggling, as they are the enemy
  • Protect your ego
  • DO NOT post any of your own anti-advice as comments to this post

Coldest Regards,

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