“Sorry, you are not what we are looking for. Your contract won´t be renewed. ” Just a sentence that is spoken countless times to young players who see their dreams burst. Every professional youth academy has to deal with it more often than not. Even at the senior club level, players are sometimes confronted with the prevailing ‘performance culture’. “We get an extra player for your position because you are not good enough. You can look forward to another club ”.
Let alone the effects of rejection within a group of players. Social rejection can have far-reaching consequences for the mental resilience of an individual player. All too often this happens when performance falls short of expectations.
Players’ problems are universal. Los status, background or competition; dealing with rejection is an essential part of being able to deal with disappointments. The better you can handle it, the greater the chance of improving your performance.
Any form of rejection hurts. Literally hurts. This appears to be American scientific research conducted by the University of Michigan.
Think of a “lump in your throat” or a “knot in your stomach” or “pain in your head”. In other words, the moment you drop in the pecking order because your performance falls short, you have the chance to be rejected faster. The pain that you subsequently feel undermines your ability to improve your performance. You get into a vicious circle. In football, we often speak of the shape of a player. There are ways to deal with this in a different way. Use rejection to improve your performance and become a better player.
4 Solutions for Dealing with Rejections
1. Find a Confidential Advisor
Find someone who is independent. You have no interest in your career and you can give honest feedback. Who can act as a sparring partner and can take you into confidence and help you move forward. As a result, the feeling of being ‘alone’ disappears to a large extent and can help you to face the truth about yourself
2. Go out, don’t hide
When we feel the pain we have a natural tendency to withdraw. Protect ourselves. A “Golden Rule” is for you to go out as much as possible. Look up social situations. The effect is that your problem is put into perspective. We tend to increase rejection and criticism and by seeking social interaction it gets its correct proportions.
3. Acknowledge the Pain
Pretending that you have “thick skin” or “criticism doesn’t touch you” slow down the process
to get back in your best ‘form’. (Partial) denial has the consequence that the “pain of rejection” literally and figuratively remains in your “head” and you cannot perform optimally both physically and mentally. You can let go of what you recognize more easily.
4. Leave Your Comfort Zone
When you experience rejection, your world does not collapse. Although it may feel that way at the time. You get out of your comfort zone. That can feel highly uncomfortable and even annoying. However this is also the moment to set new goals and to broaden your horizon, to give it a positive turn. The possibilities are endless; find a new club, or have more energy to fight for your place at your current club or pursue another career.
Ultimately, a “rejection” gives you the opportunity to look at yourself in a different way, to leave your comfort zone to realize your dreams