Talking to a pretty girl. Applying for your dream job. Letting a friend or family member read a short story you wrote. The fear of rejection can stop most people from even trying. For those that do try and meet with rejection, the pain of it can be enough to stop them from ever giving it another shot. For teens especially, this rejection can not only hurt, but be overwhelming, turning them to unhealthy methods of coping.

But is that all there is? Of course not. The good news is studies have shown that despite education or physical attributes, mental fortitude – or “grit” – can determine a person’s success.

The better news? You can build and strengthen your grit.

What Strong Minds Do

In an article published recently, it was noted that those with strong minds do the following seven things:

  1. They acknowledge their discomfort
  2. They give themselves a reality check
  3. They celebrate their courage
  4. They refuse to allow failure to define them
  5. They practice self-compassion
  6. They learn from rejection
  7. They move forward with confidence

If you look closer, you can see the one thing they all have in common.

The Reality of Rejection

When looked at as such a simple list, it can be both difficult to understand how these few things can set someone apart from others who find rejection so hard to cope with. There is one thing, though, at the root of each viewpoint: a basis in a realistic perspective.

The mentally strong, those that bounce back quickly from rejection, don’t have an inflated sense of ego, but instead realize that rejection is just that, a rejection. It’s not the end. In order to overcome rejection, you have to realize that mistakes will be made. That fact is human nature. No matter what you’re trying to accomplish, there will be times when what you’ve done won’t be good enough. It doesn’t mean you aren’t good enough. In mankind’s entire history, we have yet to find a better form of education other than trial and error.

It’s not that those succeeding aren’t making mistakes and being rejected. It’s that they’re learning from those rejections and pressing on.

Building Grit

There are programs and therapies out there ready to help, but even simple things such as deep breathing exercises help not only self-awareness, but also gives you the tools you need to control yourself when you start feeling the anxiety of rejection building.

Just like a muscle, your mental fortitude can be strengthened. Rejection may always sting, but it doesn’t have to be the end.

Author's Bio: 

Tyler Jacobson is a father, husband, and freelancer, with experience in writing and outreach for parent and organizations that help troubled teen boys. Tyler has offered humor and research backed advice to readers on parenting tactics, problems in education, issues with social media, mental disorders, addiction, and troublesome issues raising teen boys. Connect with Tyler on: Twitter | Linkedin