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7 Tips to Handling Rejection Letters

There are only a few short weeks until the end of the semester, which makes it the time of year students hear back from internships, grad schools, and jobs they have applied to. Although this can be an incredibly stressful time, hearing “no” from potential employers or schools doesn’t have to get you down. Keep reading to learn the best ways to handling rejection letters.

1. Do not think that a rejection letter is a measure of your self worth.

Remember: every “no” you receive will bring you one step closer to that “yes” you are waiting for, and everyone hears rejection at some point in their life (even J.K. Rowling’s books were rejected by publishing companies at first)! Don’t let a “no” stop you from trying… everyone starts somewhere.

2. If possible, ask the company or school how you could have improved yourself as an applicant.

Perhaps one of the best ways to move past rejection is to understand what you could have done better. Although this isn’t always possible, asking the hiring manager what they felt your application was lacking can prove to be very helpful. You can only go up from here, so use your past mistakes to improve your future self.

3. Don’t over analyze what you can no longer change….

Was there a typo on your resume? Fix it, and move on.

4. …But accept responsibility for things you could have done better.

Should you have tailored your resume more to reflect your skills for the specific position? Probably. So don’t blame the company for not understanding your qualifications.

5. Talk about it (or don’t).

Don’t be afraid to tell others about being rejected from a job or school. Talking about it can help, and friends and family can help you to improve your cover letter or interview skills. However, if you don’t want to talk about it, that’s okay, too.

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6. Understand that knowing how to handle rejection is a great asset.

Once you do land a job or internship, you are sure to face many smaller rejections during your time with the company. Employers seek out people who can handle rejection– that is the sign of a good worker, as they can pick themselves up and move on, and they don’t let their ego get in the way of their work.

7. Be courteous.

Perhaps most importantly, make sure to always end every letter of rejection on a positive note. Write back thanking the company for their consideration. How you respond to a company’s rejection says more about you as a person than your cover letter ever could.
How do you deal with handling rejection letters? Comment below or share this article with a friend!
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Kimberly Meneo

Kim Meneo is a student at Connecticut College studying English and environmental science. In her free time, she volunteers at a local equine rescue and produces freelance articles for several companies. During the summer, she can usually be found relaxing on the beach with a good book. Any questions, concerns, or general inquiries can be emailed to her at

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