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Growing a Strong Self That Withstands Rejection

Many people live in fear of rejection. They won’t change jobs, try to make friends, join groups or do anything which might put them in a position to be rebuffed. This deep-seated terror prevents them from being happy and emotionally healthy and is based on dysfunctional childhood experiences with rejection which haven’t been put to rest. Here are ways to rethink rejection so that it becomes tolerable and easily forgotten.

No one likes to be rejected as a job applicant, but not everyone builds his or her life around avoiding the possibility of it happening. When we have a pattern of fearing and getting upset at rejection, we are not looking rationally at how the world works and have an immature sense of entitlement rather than view ourselves simply as one of many deserving people on the planet. Just because you don’t get a job that you believe you were perfect for doesn’t mean that you were perfect for it. Getting a job is not all about you. There are myriad factors involved in hiring. Just because you were disappointed that you didn’t get hired doesn’t necessarily mean that there’s something wrong with you or your qualifications or that you’re undeserving. However, maybe you weren’t qualified. So what. The person who got the job also wanted and was qualified for it and was likely disappointed at other jobs he or she didn’t get.

It’s no fun to try to make a new friend and find that this person has no or little interest in being your buddy. Once again, you’ve got to think beyond a relationship being all about what you desire. Maybe someone thought you were terrific, but already has difficulty keeping up with current friendships. Maybe someone liked you in many ways, but one thing you said put her or him off. Maybe someone enjoyed meeting you but didn’t feel a spark between you two or that you had quite enough in common. Remember that not everyone will like this person who also has been rejected in friendships. This is how the world works. We don’t get everything we want. None. Of. Us. Do.

It may be disappointing to try to join a group and find that others don’t think you’re a good match. This can be a painful experience, or it can be a learning experience. Even though you want desperately to be in the group, maybe it actually wouldn’t be the right fit. Maybe if members include you, you won’t be happy, or the group won’t be thrilled with you and you’ll all feel stuck with each other or eventually, your differences will lead you to part ways. Once more, it’s not only about you. It doesn’t make you defective or unlovable because you don’t fit into every group you’d like to be part of. This viewpoint makes the total wrong meaning of rejection.

Too many dysregulated eaters can’t stand the thought of rejection when what would be beneficial is for them to be far more ho-hum and neutral about it. Catch yourself when you feel like you’re the center of the universe and humbly accept that you’re not. No one is. We’re all just limping along and doing the best we can. The truth is there’s something and someone for everyone and that to find the ultimate appropriate matches you need to experience (and process correctly) more, not less, rejection.



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