“We had an incredible applicant pool.” “We were blown away by both the quality and quantity of applications we received.” “This process is very selective.” “Unfortunately, we are not able to offer you a spot at this time.”
College rejection letter or club rejection letter? The similarities between the two are unmistakable, and honestly quite uncanny. Just when the freshmen thought their brutal year of college applications was over ... BOOM! Emails poured in during the first week of classes asking questions like “Describe yourself,” “Why this club?” and “What skills do you have?” — flashbacks of the college essay writing process and the countless nightmares. You’ve been told by almost every authority figure that college is a place to explore and do what you really love. So doesn’t that mean clubs are for you to venture out of your familiar realm? But wait, you didn’t know you needed to already start your own business and be entrepreneurship-savvy to join EPIC, or that in order to join the Sailing Team, which states that those with no experience are welcome to join, you still have to try out. How can you try out for the sailing team when you have no idea how to sail a boat?! What happened to “no experience necessary” and “college is for self-exploration?”
Alas, you gave your all but still were rejected.
DENIAL: If you wanna cry, cry. According to The List, you burn about 1.3 calories per minute when crying. Rather than hitting the gym, just use this mourning time as your workout — it kills two birds with one stone. I recommend Puffs Plus for such activity to prevent nose muscle strain and skin dryness. Remember that when you engage in intense physical activity, it is important to take care of your body. Hydration is key afterward since you will have lost so much liquid.
ANGER: When you find out that person down the hall got in and spent less than half the time on the app than you did, pull the classic teenager and scream into your pillow. You always see this in the movies, but you’ve probably never tried it. Why not try it now? Like I said, early college is a time for trying new things.
BARGAINING: Although you won’t get to meet new people from your (once) favorite clubs, use your rejection as a means of connecting with other people. Ask around for who else got denied and commiserate with each other. Together you can be bitter, salty or whatever your prefer. What’s the evidence, you ask? The countless memes that reference friendships founded on similar hatred.
DEPRESSION: Food. Now that you’ve burned a good chunk of calories with your tears and ranting, it’s totally fine to finish that party-size bag of Doritos or a pint of Ben and Jerry’s. (If you really don’t believe the calorie thing because there isn’t enough scientific proof, go for the Halo Top, but it seriously doesn’t taste as good and you know it.)
RE-FOCUSING: Binge watch a new show. If you aren’t investing your extra time in a club, get serious with Netflix, Amazon Video or Hulu. Go trendy with Stranger Things and Riverdale season two, or go classic with Friends, The Office and How I Met Your Mother. These will take awhile to get into, but soon you’ll know Rachel and Ross were on a break, be a true member of Dunder Mifflin, and kind of want to marry Ted because no one has yet.
ACCEPTANCE: It’s time to bounce back! Reapply the next recruitment cycle! I’ve never been on the other side of the recruitment so I’m not sure how much reapplying will help your chance, but why not go for it? Email someone on the club and ask for feedback to make your application better. Just don’t give up. If you really believe you will be a great fit for the club, keep advocating for yourself – no one else will. With every couple failures comes a victory.
WORDS OF ENCOURAGEMENT:
Classic motivations: You rock. You’re amazing. Don’t forget how awesome you are. It’s their loss. You can do it.
Underrated quotes: My favorite from A Cinderella Story, “Don’t let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game.” Finding Nemo’s “Just Keep Swimming.”
Wise words from your mom: “On the darkest days when I feel inadequate, unloved and unworthy, I remember whose child I am and I straighten my crown.” – Unknown
KEEP IT UP YOU’RE AT NORTHWESTERN FOR A REASON