If you’re reading this, there’s a 99.9% chance you’ve been rejected at least once in your life. Find out here how to overcome it.
By: Vivien Veil
Rejection is one of the worst, most ignored and most common emotional wounds. We generally avoid speaking about it to others since we crave acceptance and love from people. Self-consciousness and embarrassment keep us from revealing those private emotions to anyone.
Denial of love emerges from rejection. Love brings approval and recognition; rejection brings disapproval and refusal. Each of us covets love – we need it to grow into healthy and happy individuals. Love is to us what basil and pine nuts are to a great pesto. Anyone who thinks they can live without love is sadly very self-deceived. This is demonstrated by what occurs to the unloved. Sickness of one sort or another sometimes develops. Dogs often stop eating, get sick, and occasionally die from lack of love.
Rejection provokes a wound to “self.” Many flaws can evolve within one’s personality when “self” is wounded. Rebellion, insecurity, and mistrust in behavior often follow those with wounded personalities. Rejection shoots a hole to our prideful heart – brutally harming our self-worth and self-admiration. Oftentimes we feel cheapened to the point of even rejecting ourselves. We may ask, “What is it about me that repels others?” Some even resort to changing their personality in order to be accepted by people.
Given the cold shoulder by those you care about is one of the worst feelings in the world. Yes, we are routinely rejected by strangers, acquaintances, and even work colleagues, but being denied by a love interest is most excruciating. Some of the worst rejection traumas come via hurts linked with relationships. We cultivate seeds of bitterness and hardness towards the person who hurt us. Out of desperation, we even sometimes develop a stronger desire towards the person who rejected us.
I’ve seen this happen before in friends. It is crazy, but the more rejection they faced, the more they ‘fancied’ the person rejecting them. This happened to me once during my late teens after my first love caught me cheating on him. He broke it off with me, and I just struggled to move on. Rejection can definitely create negative emotions and behavior.
As bizarre as this sounds – the less you care about a person, the more they care about you. And the more you care about someone, the less they care about you. Yes, our “weird” world is a very strange and dark place.
Signs of Rejection
When rejection strikes, some type of reaction or response is required. Some unwanted reactions cause us to lash out at others in confrontations of anger, bitterness, and rebellion. The following list will help us identify the signs of rejection:
- Evasion and Daydreaming
- Negative Attitude
- Defensiveness and a Judgmental Character
- Cold and Impenetrable Personality
To change the ramifications of rejection, we must first strengthen our self-worth to medicate the pain. Keep in mind these tips the next time you experience rejection.
Ways to Overcome Rejection
1. It has nothing to do with you. The blow of rejection affects us more when we are close to a person. We will not pay much attention if a cashier at a shop rejects us. Rejection becomes a heavy mental weight on our shoulders – we attack our character and everything we stand for. Simply because we believe something must be wrong with our true selves to cause someone to “abandon” us.
Most of the time, the rebuff has nothing to do with us at all. An individual may simply be too busy or stressed out to deal with a relationship at the moment. Unless you are God, you will not know exactly what is going on in their minds.
2. Forgiving your offenders. Forgiveness of those who hurt us is a necessity for deliverance of rejection. When we encounter rejection and remain in that state, we will unavoidably experience rejection by others. However, forgiveness brings happiness, peace, and self-acceptance. Forgiving does not mean we condone the awful things that happened to us. Forgiveness does not deny their rejections, their selfishness, or meanness that may attach to them.
It is essential to stop viewing ourselves as their victims and holding them responsible for our emotional well-being. Arriving to a forgiving place is a long and arduous journey, but once there, the forgiveness we gain will be a forgiveness worth having. Unforgiveness only breeds torment and produces a toxic ‘cancer’ inside of us. Now, if you are a Christian, God says that if we expect his forgiveness, we must forgive. If we choose not to forgive, we can expect to be tormented until we do. Plus, don’t forget to forgive yourself!
3. God had better plans for you. Things happen for a reason. There is always something better in store for us – we just fail to see this when we are sad and hurting. We need to see past the transitory period of heartache and sadness and realize that God allowed for it to happen for a reason. Nothing in this life is a coincidence. We may not understand it at that very moment, but it is normally revealed later on.
Many friends revealed to me that they felt depressed when a love interest broke up with them, only to discover a while later why it happened – they found the love of their lives when they least expected it! Thereafter, they rejoiced at the fact they were rejected, and declared they would not have changed their past for anything in the world. In hindsight, they laughed at the suffering they experienced. Eventually, we will discover the real reason of our suffering – it just takes some patience to wait for that day.
4. It isn’t you. “Why did this happen? What did I do? Did I say something wrong? Am I not attractive enough?” When a person rejects you, they are living out their own anxieties and fears. Not everything revolves around you. Keep in mind that the person who left you is going through their own private matters, and that you most likely did nothing to cause their decision.
Take comfort in knowing that the person who rejects you is dealing with their own personal battles and that you most likely did nothing to cause their outcome.
5. Childhood rejection. Rejection can sometimes stem from childhood. Oftentimes, a child is deprived of a close relationship with their parents, i.e. working parents sending their children to daycare and spending very little time with them. Sometimes the child senses rejection from the mother or father if the parents devote too little time with them.
Additionally, the death of one or both parents and a divorce can also produce an intense wound in a young child’s personality. The child simply cannot understand what has occurred to his/her parent and relates to their disappearance as abandonment. This ordeal becomes a persistent challenge to conquer throughout life.
Past childhood memories lodged in their subconscious minds may invoke strong panic attacks when rejected. Remembering the source of your childhood rejection and openly speaking about it with a trusted family member, friend, counselor, or therapist can make a great impact on how you deal with this troublesome emotion in the future. Sometimes a good “cry” is all you need to feel better.
Rejection is never going to go away. Accepting this notion will turn you into a rejection fighter, so that you will emerge a much stronger person from each situation. That way – you will no longer put so much emphasis on what people do to you.
6. A learning experience. Rejection does not always have to be doom and gloom. We can use rejection to our advantage and become better people out of it. If you were too controlling, too jealous, or a cheater – you can look within yourself and say, “I realize that I pushed them away because of this. I’m going to try and change that part of me.”
Sadly, sometimes it takes a horrible emotional experience to bring humility and make us better people. As far as I’m concerned, there is always room for improving ourselves.
7. Harmonize and reunite. Reconcile to restore broken relationships. Turn hostility and animosity to friendship and good will. Of course – the first thing you must do is forgive. Reconciliation is a two-sided affair. The procedure of reconciliation is executed between two people when the restoration is initiated by one person and accepted by the other.
We obviously cannot force others to accept us again, but we should aim to never let any “failure to gain reconciliation” rest at our doorstep. Restoring a relationship with someone who caused us deep wounds can be unsettling. Keep in mind that the true test of profitable reconciliation is when it brings peace. If a renewed relationship is full of peace and free from hypocrisy and strife – then fear will flee and your lives will be improved.
8. Be open to instruction. Last, but certainly not least, you must be open for counsel. Many changes need to be established. Old nasty habits and negative behavior must be changed. Everything in one’s life that is not full of positivity must be brought up to that standard.
Sometimes seeking a counselor or therapist can be an excellent idea to receive wisdom and understanding. However, you have to leave all stubbornness and “refusal to receive advice” at the door. The average Joe cannot properly diagnose his own problems. He is too busy scratching the surface rather than digging for the roots. Rejection sufferers tend to hate advice from others because they look at correction as another form of rejection. Correction is not rejection! These people need to humble themselves and admit, “The problem is in me. I need to change.”
Although we hate suffering the humbling effects of rejection, looking at it in a positive light will enable us to conquer it more effortlessly.
To freedom from the shackles of rejection,
Vivien Veil x