I have been trying to analyse the responses I get from submissions, especially the rejections. Obviously there is a tendency to fixate on the 'you have not been accepted on this occasion' part but I realise I need to look more closely at the statements around that phrase. The standard 'the quality of the applications was very strong' is a prime example. I often take it to mean, that all were strong except mine but it could mean that mine was strong but just missing some vital keyword ( I am never very good at keywords) that the proposer does not know. The difference between success and failure may be very small. Again, for an exhibition, a submission may just not fit in with other works. For funding applications, a question is about benefit, who would benefit the most? A positive response from me could be that I show such high level of skill that others would benefit more regardless of the position of the proposer who believes that they would gain from the opportunity. But even more destructive are the applications that do not receive a response. This seems to be especially true of associate artist/artist pool/ gallery educator positions. The proposal is not even worth an email response of rejection.These are obviously personal observations and it is really hard not to feel undermined by rejections. The sense that you may be good but not quite good enough is pervasive and the relentless picking oneself up again is wearing. Sometimes, just a little more respect for the artist in recognition of the enormous amount of time put into the application would be nice and there are some responses that are lovely in their rejection of my amazing talent ( I am trying hard to believe this very last bit).