Let’s be legit. Most people suffer from fear of rejection. And the sooner we all learn how to overcome fear of rejection, the better.
What are you afraid of? Getting rejected by a hot girl or a cute guy? Are you afraid of being rejected for a job application? Got fear of being rejected by your friends?
Rejections are one of the things people fear most. But we don’t have to take that fear. There are tons of great ways how to overcome the fear of rejection.
Most people gradually get over the fear of rejection as they get older. But for some people fear of rejection is crippling.
When I was fifteen I told a girl in the year above me that I had feeling for her. She looked shocked and disgusted. And then she told her friends. Her friends then brought it up in assembly, and within a few hours of me having privately told this girl how I felt the entire year knee, and then the entire school. And I was bullied by her friends. And the entire situation became a shitstorm that totally wrecked me for years.
You ever face anything like that? Probably, right? Because the worst cases of fear of rejection come from someone acting like a douche or a bitch. And it can be hard to overcome the fear of rejection when you’ve been through something like that. Hard. But not impossible. And the truth is, if you want to live to the Pepsi max, you’ve got to face the fear in your life.
I was not about to let the fear of rejection ruin me
So thanks to this girl, fifteen year old me was terrified of being rejected. It would take a long time to get over that.
Next couple of years I didn’t ask a girl out. I got asked out a few times. Said yes to a couple of them and very politely declined the others (cause I’ll be damned if I’m going to do to a girl what one girl did to me).
And I fought to overcome my fear of rejection.
I learnt tons of different techniques for overcoming fear (these are my three favorite ways to overcome fear).
And I learnt how t master fear.
Now I would like to share my strategies with you.
How to Overcome Fear of Rejection
Change the way you feel about being rejected
If you have a fear of rejection you’re totally looking at rejection the wrong way. Change that. Change your attitude.
For instance, let’s say you’re afraid of being rejected for a job. Chill. Do not look at this rejection lie a boss saying, for instance, “You are totally unfit to work anywhere and are in fact humanity’s biggest failure”. Okay. So I enhanced that for dramatic effect. But don’t look at rejection like a fatal thing.
If you fear being rejected by the opposite sex, by a hot girl or a cute guy, chill. They’re not saying, “You’re a terrible person who is so ugly your face is basically a form of social terrorism”. No. It just means that maybe you’re not quite the right one for them, for that one individual person, that’s all. Next girl might say yes.
Being too dramatic about it well ruin you.
Rejection from one person is not a rejection from the rest, yet nevertheless, when we are the ones being rejected ourselves, this is how it feels. How then do we correct this negative view of rejection? The answer is by objectively observing the fact that we harbor such negative views and by challenging them.
You need to learn to stop your negative thoughts (click that link to learn how to do it).
Accept rejection. Because it’s fine.
Allow yourself to nonjudgementally observe your views on rejection.
Think of being rejected and simply be aware of the presumptions you make about rejection.
For example, does a rejection from a member of the opposite sex mean you are ugly? That you have a bad personality? That no one likes you?
Be aware of your mental delusions. Write them down if it helps.
Actually, scratch that. Go ahead right now and write a list of all the negative things you think about rejection. Then read the list back. You will be mind blown by how full of crap you are. I don’t mean that personally. People create so much drama in their own minds and it is all bullshit. Write that list and read it. I promise you will be stunned. This is why I keep a belief journal.
Go through that list of thoughts and beliefs and challenge them one by one. This will change your mind. And changing your mind will change your life.
On a Good Day, Intentionally Get Rejected
This is one of the best ways how to get rejected.
The idea is to wait until you have a fantastic day, a day when something happens to you that is so great you couldn’t possibly feel bad.
For example, if you’ve just gotten your exam results and you aced them. At such a time a rejection isn’t going to mean a big deal to you because the negative that is the rejection is completely eclipsed by the positive that is the exam results. Take advantage of this. Go up to that super-hot woman and ask her out, cause heck, if she rejects you now then sod her, you just aced your exams, who cares?!
One time I was in London when I was accepted for an acting role that I really wanted. Nothing could kill my happiness. I knew that. So I thought screw it. I went up to a smoking hot city girl. The type of girl a country guy like me would seriously struggle to get. I asked her out. She said “No.” I said “Thank you” and smiled. She was amazed. She then said “Wait. Screw it. Let’s go grab a coffee”. Weird and wonderful, like all the best things in life.
Intentionally get rejected when you know you wont care. Then you will teach your brain that rejection is no big deal.
Vividly imagine the Moment after being Rejected
One of the biggest mistakes made by those with a fear of rejection is to presume that rejection is the end of the world.
The way how to overcome fear of rejection is to rid ourselves of this overly dramatic view.
Our fear often stops us from realising that life will go on after we are rejected. The problem with this is that we construct in ourselves a mental habit of repressing thoughts of rejection. We actually teach ourselves to keep away from thinking about anything that might lead to rejection because we are so afraid of it. So your fear makes it impossible for you to ask anything that you might be rejected for.
Stop repressing your fear. Allow your fears to come to the surface. It’s only then that you can get rid of them. So, allow yourself to imagine a three stage process.
- Bring to mind the event of which you are afraid of (for example, asking someone out),
- Think about being rejected (actually imagine the other person turning you down)
- Imagine a positive event occurring immediately after the rejection (for instance, you are absolutely thrilled because you have overcome a fear).
By imagining this three stage process over and over again, you will learn to recognise that life goes on after the rejection, and this will dramatically reduce your fear of being rejected.
Focus on the Benefits
Okay, so far in finding how to overcome fear of rejection, we have presented some pretty serious and in some cases daunting strategies for facing fear of rejection.
This one, however, is a lot more fun.
Simply drill into your head the positives of doing the thing of which you are afraid (for example, imagine being accepted for the job) AND (and this is very important) every time you think of this positive, match it with a positive thing that would happen after you have been rejected.
To clarify this. Imagine you get the job (step one) but also imagine that you got rejected but because of being rejected you found a better job (step two). This will create a win / win situation in your mind. And because it’s a win / win you will have nothing to be afraid of.
You can overcome fear of rejection. Let me know how you get on. Leave a comment.