Dealing with Rejection

So I’m job searching right now, had an over Skype interview earlier today. Job searching is like my personal worst nightmare. Being forced to make myself vulnerable over and over to people I don’t know. Being forced to meet people and try to market myself to them when I often feel like I know nothing and don’t do anything well (because depression and anxiety). Being forced to write meaningless cover letters over and over. These are all things that I see no value in doing. And everything is so competitive, because everyone needs a job, and there’s always someone better than you who wants the same job you do, and it really doesn’t feel worth it to even try when you know you’re going to fail over and over and over.

I hate failure. I’m not used to it, first of all. As a child, I was usually good at whatever I tried, and if I wasn’t, I quickly stopped doing it. My parents never forced me to go through with things if I didn’t want to do them, so I never learned that failure can be a good thing. And all the pop psychology articles in the world telling me “failure helps you learn” and “failure is normal” don’t help dispel my feelings that if I fail at a particular task, that I am a failure at everything. When I fail, I see it as a direct indicator of my personal worth. So if I fail, I’m worthless. And if I fail over and over and over again, I’m worse than worthless. I might as well not even try.

That isn’t a very helpful attitude when job searching, but I can’t really help how I feel. Doing any activity where I just feel more and more worthless the longer it goes on is torture for me. I’d rather have heated nails driven into my flesh than have to apply to jobs over and over and just end up being rejected every time.

I don’t mind as much when I submit a resume and just get a form email rejection. I have half a second of disappointment and then I move on. What makes me feel awful is being rejected after an interview. That’s a more personal rejection. When I go to a bunch of effort to look nice and prepare, and then the interview seems to go well, but they then send me an email or call me to say they don’t want me, I feel awful. It would be easier if they would tell me why. If there was something I did, or if they had a way more promising candidate who interviewed after me, or if they already had someone in mind for the position but had to put the job posting out there anyway. I mean, I get that they can’t usually disclose that kind of information, but I wish they could. It would help me to know they aren’t rejecting me personally. But then, maybe they are, and it would feel awful if they told me they didn’t hire me because I’m fat, or because I’m too old, or whatnot. So maybe it wouldn’t help to know why.

I have another interview on Thursday. Right now I’m sure that job won’t hire me either. So I’ll have to go put myself out there again, and again, and get rejected again. Thinking about it makes me want to curl up into a ball and cry.

So that’s where I’m at right now.

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