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We all deal with rejection at some point. But it’s never fun to deal with rejection in your business.

The way you handle rejection can make a big difference in your business and your life down the road. When you are rejected, it can feel like a blow to your self-esteem — and even to your dreams. If you give in to those feelings, you can lose your way.

Instead, learn to handle rejection in your business, and you will be more likely to thrive in the long run. Here are four tips that can help you:

1. Acknowledge Your Disappointment

The first thing to do is acknowledge your feelings and your disappointment. Everyone feels bad when they’ve been rejected. Whether your application for a small business loan was turned down or whether a potential partner backed out of a deal, it stings.

Pretending it doesn’t hurt won’t help anyone. Face your emotions head-on and figure out how you can move forward. It will help you improve your mental strength. Plus, it will keep you from going down a road in which you bottle everything up, causing bigger problems later.

2. Find the Lesson

Next, find the lesson in the rejection. Usually, there’s something you can learn from the experience. Maybe you didn’t have a strong business plan, so an investor decided to pull back. Perhaps you made a mistake in the way you handled a problem. In some cases, you might experience rejection in your business because you just haven’t grown enough.

Whatever the reason for the rejection, it’s important to look for ways to improve. Don’t use the rejection as a reason to quit. Instead, look at it as a chance to improve. Make some tweaks. Maybe you even need to start from scratch. But take the lesson and apply it so your next attempt isn’t as likely to fail.

3. Be Kind to Yourself

It’s not uncommon for rejection in your business to lead to negative self-talk. Don’t get caught in this trap. While you do need to acknowledge weaknesses and conditions that could be improved, rejection doesn’t mean that you are down for the count.

Look for ways to introduce more affirming self-talk so that you can move forward. Be kind to yourself. Don’t keep beating yourself up. We all make mistakes. We’re all rejected. And sometimes that rejection has more to do with external factors than internal factors.

Allow yourself some grace, pick yourself up. And then try again.

4. Don’t Let Rejection in Your Business Define You

If a member of your team leaves, or if an investor decides not to provide you with funds, don’t let that define you as unsuccessful. In fact, don’t take it as a sign of anything other that it wasn’t the right opportunity.

You’re only unsuccessful if you give up. Plenty of successful entrepreneurs had setbacks and experienced rejection. Rejection is a sign you’ve put yourself out there. You can’t succeed if you don’t take a few risks.

You don’t need to let rejection get you down. Sure, go out and feel bad for yourself for an evening. However, once you’re done with your short pity party, it’s time to get back to work building a successful business.