What’s the first thing you should do after you are dumped?
No, after you completely lose it in a public place, eat 1.2 pizzas because who cares, and not-sleep for 3 days. Those are important, healthy things that will help you move on. As long as you are listening to You Oughta Know (or whatever) while you’re doing it.
Well here’s what you should do: anything creative. You could make a billion dollars! Or snag some Grammy Awards, like Adele! Because researchers have found that for independent-minded people, rejection can be a good thing, boosting creativity and imaginative thinking.
Scientists tested college students’ “need for uniqueness” and then some of them were made to feel rejected by being told they were not selected to be part of another group. All participants were then asked to do super imaginative things like complete word associations or drawings of aliens. The researchers found that participants who valued being unique did better on the tests after experiencing rejection. (And vice versa.)
“For people who already feel separate from the crowd, social rejection can be a form of validation,” lead researcher Sharon Kim said.
Here is what an independent person thinks after getting rejected: “YES, I am NOT like everyone else. And that is a GOOD thing. And I’m going to USE THAT.” Which is a pretty awesome thing to think after someone just told you they don’t happen to like you that much anymore. What was their name again? Oh yeah, it doesn’t matter WHEN YOU ARE ROLLING IN GRAMMY AWARDS. It doesn’t matter, anyway.