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How to overcome job rejections?

I’m not sure who may need to hear this but I know my younger self did, so I’ll share it here.

Some of you may be graduating soon or applying for jobs now. Some of you may be losing hope because of the unstable job market. Some of you may be feeling anxious about the prospect of securing a job as a foreign worker before your time runs out. I understand how overwhelming it must feel.

As I reflect on my own job search journey in the US, I remember the countless rejections I received. At times, it was because I wasn't the right fit, I wasn't good enough, or my status as an international student or work visa holder made me instantly unqualified for the positions I applied to… Despite applying tirelessly until there were no more suitable job listings on LinkedIn and other career sites, I often received responses that began with "unfortunately..." or even worse, no response at all. (Disclaimer: These screenshots are just a few of the numerous rejections I received when applying for jobs). To me, “feeling enough" was a luxury. It was an incredibly difficult and nerve-wracking time but I made a conscious decision to always move forward.

Amidst the seemingly endless rejections, I finally received my first "yes". One “yes” turned into two, and a few more "yeses" then followed as I keep doubling down on the handful of "yeses" I received. However, I’m genuinely also thankful for all the "nos” and always responded with gratitude. Without them, I’d never be where I am or become the person I am today. Rejection is merely a redirection and an opportunity for self-improvement. While it's easy to get bogged down by negativity when faced with adversity, taking the time to appreciate how far we’ve come in life and redirecting can make all the difference.

My intention in sharing this is not to scare you but hopefully I can offer a glimpse into the light at the end of the tunnel based on my true story, despite the odds. It’s not about winning or losing, but rising. Don't let your background or situation hold you back. Even if the possibility seems slim, with grit and gratitude, anything is possible. Keep rising, pushing boundaries, and building your dreams. Never give up on yourself, even if others do.

Here’s also a throwback to my podcast episode with Ikechi Okoronkwo (Executive Director, Managing Partner, Head of BI & Analytics at Mindshare) on "how to nail job interviews or become a better interviewer" for those who may find it helpful. Although it was a while ago, I believe the advice we shared remains relevant (and yes, I’ll come back with more sharing on Bloom in Crisis soon! 😊)


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