Everyone has a fear of being rejected; it’s just how we are programmed. But if it seems too overwhelming, take a look at how you can beat it for good.
Nobody wants to be rejected. No matter what you’re doing in your life—whether it’s dating or just applying for jobs—the impending fear that you won’t be chosen is always creeping its way to the inside of your head, gnawing on any self-confidence you may have.
This is a natural fear that everybody has, to some degree—even the most confident among us. It’s just a reaction our bodies have in order to protect themselves from emotional damage. We know that rejection hurts, and we’d like nothing more than to never have to feel it.
But that’s just not realistic. The truth is, life is full of rejection. We all have to deal with it, no matter how strong our fear is. However, if your fear of rejection is crippling and becoming a huge problem in your life, there are different things you can do to silence negative thoughts.
Get rid of that fear of rejection for good
I am probably one of the worst worriers when it comes to rejection. Pair that crippling fear with my over-the-top anxiety, and it’s basically a recipe for me to become a hermit… forever condemned to the depths of my lonely apartment.
If this sounds like you, and you’re desperate for a way to kick that fear of rejection from your life for good, you’ll want to keep reading. I, with the help of many people just like me, have compiled a list of fool-proof ways to get rid of that fear and make sure it stays away.
#1 Determine why it scares you so much. Rejection affects everybody in a negative manner. But if it’s really, really bad for you, determine why that is. Before you can beat the fear of rejection, you have to know why it’s such a bad fear in the first place. [Check out: How you can overcome your fear of being rejected]
Were you humiliated by being rejected once? Does it turn your world upside down? Are you just easily embarrassed? Decide which it is for you, then confront those issues separately.
#2 Consider worst/best case scenarios. Most of the time, people fear rejection because they don’t know what the outcome will be. It’s the unknown. In order to get rid of this fear, go over the best and worst case scenarios.
When you have determined the absolute worst thing that could possibly happen in a situation where rejection is a threat, you will be much more prepared—and you may even realize that being rejected isn’t the worst, after all.
#3 Spend time working on yourself. Another reason people fear rejection so fiercely is because of insecurities. They aren’t very confident in themselves and this leads to a greater fear of them failing and being rejected. [Try: Fear of failure and why you shouldn’t be afraid to fail]
So, take some time to work on yourself. Read some books to gain knowledge, help out at a shelter of some kind, or just pamper yourself. Becoming a better you will ease the fear of being rejected, because you won’t base your worth on the opinions of others.
#4 Gain confidence. Just like working on making yourself a better person can ease the fear of rejection, gaining some confidence can do wonders. Many people who are confident are the people who go out and go after just about anything—never fearing the outcome.
Go buy something that’ll make you feel great about yourself. Hit the gym extra hard in order to up your body image. A great way I’ve found to ramp up confidence is to take a boxing lesson. It’s a great workout, and it just makes you feel powerful, confident, and fearless. [Check it out: 11 tips to fall in love with yourself and be a better you]
#5 Realize that life is short. This one may not seem like a big deal, but I’ve found that realizing life is rather short goes a long way in helping you overcome the fear of rejection. When you put life into perspective, you’ll come to understand that you have two options: go for it and deal with rejection, or live in fear and never find out. You’d be surprised by how quickly the fear dissipates.
#6 Practice. Although one may not want to practice being rejected, it’s an awesome way to grow accustomed to the feeling. After being rejected over and over again, you’ll learn how to react and it will become easier for you to deal with it.
This is especially true for dating. If you have a horrible fear of rejection, go after people who are generally out of your league. Take that leap and be rejected by them. You’ll soon discover that it’s not so scary, after all. And hey, you may not be rejected, and then BOOM: your confidence skyrockets.
#7 Sometimes rejection has nothing to do with you. Have you ever been fearful of being rejected and then suddenly realized that you may not even be the reason that you could be rejected? If you’re heading out to pick up someone that you may want to date and they say “no,” do you think that it could be their own problems and not you at all? [Try this next: How to get over a breakup]
When you take a step back and actually analyze the situation, you may come to the conclusion that the reality of being rejected might not have a thing to do with you. From there, the fear pretty much vanishes.
#8 Understand that you’re not everyone’s cup of tea. Not everybody is going to like you. Not everybody is going to think that you’re the best fit for their needs. It’s not harsh and it’s not something you should be fearful of; it’s just the way life works.
Once you realize that, rejection isn’t something that feels like a personal attack, but a natural occurrence of life. Understanding this will help you beat that fear of rejection.
#9 Envisioning situations. Have you ever heard of the power of visualization? If you imagine a situation turning out a certain way enough, it will turn out that way. That’s how the saying goes, at least. But did you know that this actually has some truth to it?
Envision yourself in a situation where rejection doesn’t happen. But then also envision the same situation where you are rejected. In the second situation, visualize this without the fear of rejection. If you do this enough, your fear in real life will also disappear.
#10 Put yourself in situations where you won’t be rejected. The best way to get over the fear of rejection is to make sure you’re not in a position where you will be rejected. Do your research before a job interview, go hit on people that you know are single and ready to mingle, and do whatever you can to prepare for the day ahead of you. [Try: 12 ways to stop negative people from sapping your energy]
#11 Keep a list of positives to read off before heading into a situation. If you need a little pick-me-up before going off into a situation where you have the chance to be rejected, keep a small list of things to read that will make you feel better.
Remind yourself of all your good traits, remind yourself of why rejection shouldn’t be feared, and then continue with your day. It’ll ease the tension and put you in a positive mindset.
#12 Always be prepared for the worst. I know nobody wants to think about the worst thing that can happen, but you should always be prepared for it. When you walk into a place thinking there’s no way you can be rejected, you risk having your world crash down around you.
Be prepared to be rejected. Know exactly what you will say or do if it happens, and you will see that your fear will go away. Since you’re prepared for it, you can deal with it.
[Read next: 8 positive ways to deal with rejection in any scenario]
Nobody wants to go through life being rejected. They especially don’t want to walk around with a constant fear of rejection. In order to say goodbye to that fear for good, take a few of these tips into consideration.