Why Do We Fear Rejection?

How many times has the fear of rejection stopped you from doing something?

Why? Rejection really sucks!

Sorry, you didn’t get the job. I think we should just be friends. I don’t like your outfit/project/etc.

Ouch!

Here’s the thing- every single human has experienced some form of rejection.

Who experiences the most rejection? The people who put themselves out there the most.

Being curious about the effects of rejection and recommendations for recovering from it, I did some scholarly research.. on wikihow. Sorry professors who are reading!!

The wikihow article talks about how typically rejection causes people to take less risks. People who get rejected and don’t know how to cope properly end up making choices that are very risk adverse. They don’t want to feel that horrible feeling of rejection again! It makes total sense.

Sadly, the things we want the most cause us to take the greatest risks, so while we feel like we are protecting ourselves by not taking any, we are just preventing ourselves from living out our best lives. The result? A life of settling. Uninspiring and boring.

Think of playing poker. The greater of a risk you take the greater the reward you can potentially receive. If you play small, you will only get a small return. The same with taking risks. The bigger the risk, the bigger the reward. You can’t win a race that you don’t enter. Yes it’s scary, but that’s why not everyone gets there.

The people who I’ve talked to who are the most successful against my standards have all experienced amounts of rejection that are greater than the average person. The difference? They continue to bounce back and don’t dwell on it too much. They keep focused on the goal. They have a different perspective on why they were rejected and continue to work hard for what they want. 

So while we can blame our rejection on not being good enough or on our flaws, this is actually the most counterproductive reaction we can have. 

Instead, we can look at rejection as a room for growth or realize that something wasn’t meant for us, but this doesn’t mean that we are any less worthy. It’s either not the right timing or not the right thing for us and that’s okay!

I want you to replace “I didn’t get ___ because I’m not smart enough” with “I did not get this because I didn’t have enough experience in ___ or knowledge in ___ so I will work hard on developing these skills.” This replaces hopeless feelings with actionable ones.

And sometimes something really is just not meant for us. In time, you will realize why. 

Please don’t let the fear of rejection stop you from chasing your dreams.

Here are some tips I found for coping with rejection:

  1. Talk to someone
  2. Be active- go for a walk, go to the gym, or clean
  3. Think about your successes
  4. Write it out
  5. Pamper yourself
  6. Take some time to recover (it’s normal to be sad)
  7. Don’t take it personally!
  8. Remember it’s not all about you (there are other factors as to why something didn’t work out)
  9. Be grateful
  10. Find the good in the situation

Thanks for reading. I hope this piece was helpful for anyone dealing with rejection.

XO,

YOUNGCOCO


One thought on “Why Do We Fear Rejection?

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