When things don’t go your way

It’s time to learn how to handle disappointment, advises our elder. Rejection is a part of life.

Dear EWC:

Hi! I’m a 17-year-old girl in my senior year of high school and I will soon find out if I got accepted into the University of Illinois, which is the only school I love. They have a great program for my major, the campus isn’t too far from my family, if I get in they’ll give me free tuition. Overall it’s just the perfect school for me.

I’m just so worried that I won’t know how to handle it if I don’t get in. I struggle a lot with anxiety and depression and if I don’t get into Illinois, I’m afraid my mental health will just go into a downward spiral. How am I supposed to handle the disappointment of not having the future I want if I don’t get in?

Salvador replies:

I am not sure if you have learned to handle rejection in life much. If not, it is time to start learning. Why not start looking for alternatives? Don’t get stuck with an attitude that you want that university only. Learn to accept that in life you don’t always get what you want.

If you have problems with anxiety and depression, see a professional who can help you with that. Along this same line, with your anxiety over the upcoming letter, why not talk to a counselor who can help you learn coping skills and how to handle and manage disappointment before the big letter arrives?

Also, go to YouTube and see videos of people who have handled adversity. How about the teacher who was born with no arms and still found a way to become a teacher? How about the young girl who was born with no fingers on one hand and recruited the help of a teacher to design a frame so she could play the flute? There have been countless cases of young athletes who get hurt and cannot become professional athletes. What did they do? They became coaches, analysts, commentators, or went into other professions. They came-up with alternatives. Some people get a terminal disease and keep a positive attitude and achieve as much as they could have in something they never thought of.

So get up and do something about it. You do not know yet what the outcome is and you are getting a defeatist attitude already. Wait for the results and then make plans for something else if necessary. One door may close but another may open if you look for it.

Learning how to take adversity is like the fire that tempers metal; It makes you stronger. It is up to you whether you are going to let obstacles keep you down or not. Granted, you may need some help along the way but you have to do your part. Preparation is essential so get ready for the possibility of not getting accepted and make plans for alternatives.
I hope this reply helped you and I wish you the best, Remember, it is up to you to work on your happiness.


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