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  • Writer's pictureMagda

How to deal with rejection?

The fear of rejection is by far one of the most common feelings out there. From my friends to clients I hear about it daily. But what is it?


- the dismissing or refusing of a proposal, idea, etc.

- the action of spurning a person's affections.

We often experience nerves when we put ourselves in situations that could lead to rejection, for some people, the nerves may be so crippling or overpowering that they decide not to go ahead with the action at all. As you can imagine, it can truly affect our ability to succeed in a wide range of situations, personal and professional. I used to be afraid of rejection and will happily admit that it stopped me doing things I planned originally.

I remember, as a young girl, I didn’t tell the boy I really liked that I would like to date him because I was afraid what his response might be. As a younger adult, in my first employment, I was terrified to ask my boss for pay rise despite knowing very well that I was being underpaid for the work that I was doing. Later on, I was worried that if I say what my real beliefs are, my friends will laugh at me. It continued and without even noticing the fear grew greater and greater, in my head most of the situations I was in were blown out of proportion and at some point, I was basically sabotaging myself and limiting my own growth.

I would talk myself out of things because “I didn’t deserve it”, or “What if I am wrong”, “What if they say I am not good enough” and so on. Negative “What ifs” were the primary thoughts every time I was faced with a situation that could result in rejection. Fear of rejection can really affect all aspects of our lives; relationships, career, job interviews, business dealings, dating, meeting new people, the list can go on and on.

“No” is a word that so many of us fear, it is the sound of rejection. The two letters can be really life-changing. Fast forward a few years later and I decided to look at the times I heard “no” and see how it has impacted my life. I also spoke to my clients and friends to gather as much feedback as I potentially could. Turns out, that every single time I was left feeling as if the whole world was crashing down on me was a blessing rather than a curse that I thought it was at the time. All of the people I spoke with, confirmed that thought.

Just think about it…

How many opportunities you may be missing out on because you’re avoiding disappointments, failure or rejection?

Wayne Gretzky said it best “We miss 100% of the shots we didn’t take”. We actually, genuinely do. Imagine if Michael Jordan thought about what would happen if he didn’t score every time he took a shot? If Anthony Joshua thought about missing the face of his opponent every time he threw a punch? They probably would never do it. I am not saying they never think about it, it would be strange if they didn’t but growth is what lays on the other side of fear. Growth is the only thing that you can expect from any form of rejection. Dale Carnegie said “Inaction breeds doubt and fear. Action breeds confidence and courage. If you want to conquer fear, do not sit home and think about it. Go out and get busy.” What an amazing quote, I couldn’t have put it better myself. Taking action when the only response your body gives you is “stay comfortable” is the biggest step you can take towards growth and change. Rejection sucks, yes it does but the effects it has on your body and your mind when not faced with the right action can be detrimental in your day to day life.

According to this "Psychology today” article some of the side effects of rejection can include the feeling of physical pain, surge of anger and aggression and it can also temporarily lower your IQ! Surely it must be worth trying to learn how to manage it and let go of that fear!

You can find a few tried and tested tips on how to handle rejection below:

1. Focus on what you have. When you are faced with a fear of rejection it is very useful to note that no matter what the situation you are in, if the answer is “no”, it generally does not change your current circumstances, therefore, you have nothing to lose and are still left with what you have. For example, if you are afraid to ask your boss for a pay raise if they say no, you are still left in exactly the same situation as you were before you asked. If they say yes, however, how much have you gain? Most likely it is worth the risk! In another scenario, if you really like someone but you don’t know if they like you back, if they say that they do not, the only thing that they will help you with is moving on and not wasting any more time than you already spent wondering if they might. So take action!

2. Don’t start thinking that it’s all about you. When we are faced with rejection we tend to go into a pattern that makes us believe that we are at fault. Remember, you will never truly know other people’s circumstances, beliefs or patterns. Their response may actually have nothing to do with you so don’t take it personally.

3. Focus on what you can learn. “There Is No Such Thing As Failure, Only Feedback” Imagine if world’s greatest inventors gave up the first time their project turned out a disaster, we’d have nothing, from cars to laptops and mobile phones, every single invention started with a few failed attempts but if all people gave up before they even tried, how interesting would the world be? So when rejected keep an open mind and ask yourself these questions:

What can I learn from this?

Is there anything I would do differently next time?

Make a mental note of your answers and learn as much as you can from the experience. Feel changed? Congratulations, this is how growth feels!

4. Shut down your inner critic. That’s the voice inside your head that tells you that you’re not good enough, not pretty enough or that you do not deserve something. When it starts making an appearance, simply shut it down. Yes, it will try to come back again and again but you know what? You just conquered one of your biggest fears, you came out of your comfort zone and stared rejection right in the eye, you took the chance because you knew that you would regret the chance that you did not take. So do exactly that, see what it says to you and say “thank you, but no thank you, not today Satan, today I kicked ass!”.

5. Let it go. Don’t hold on to it for too long. You did it, that’s the biggest step that you took. Be proud of yourself, take the lessons that you learned from it, let it go and next time, set even a bigger objective!

I wanted to share this with you as I know first-hand how crippling fear of rejection can be and how much it can limit your possibilities. Remember, rejection is just part of the process that leads to tremendous amounts of growth. If you want us to work together on beating your fears related to rejection or any other topics, feel free to drop me an email and work on the sessions specifically tailored to you.

With love and gratitude,

Mags x


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