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How to Deal With the Fear of Rejection

Have you ever felt so scared that you would be rejected by someone or something, that you decided not to even try? Perhaps it was a job you really wanted, or someone you really liked; the fear of rejection is a strong one that can have a long-lasting impact on the way you see the world and how you react to opportunities. The fear of rejection is often masked with the help of different patterns and you may fail to see it for what it really is, because it is so deeply ingrained in your subconscious that it is difficult to identify. Fearing rejection is not uncommon, but manifests itself in different ways. It is a deep-rooted thought-process that makes you scared of being looked at critically, which could lead to you being isolated and feeling lonely. A prolonged fear of rejection can lead to a confirmation of your worst beliefs about yourself – that you are unlovable and inadequate – thus making you scared of even trying to rectify that. A common thought pattern is, “If I’m going to fail anyway, why should I even try?” This becomes a downward spiral very quickly.

Where does the fear of rejection stem from?


Different experiences related to the feeling of abandonment in life can lead to a subconscious belief that one will always be denied or rejected. For many people, it is as deep-rooted as a parent leaving the family during the early years of childhood.


According to Psychologist and Author of the Book from Abandonment to healing, she describes abandonment as a primal fear.  “The raw human nerve of abandonment can tingle during the course of normal work day – even when you’re unaware of it – when you feel ignored, unrecognized, or dismissed, or sense any hint of disapproval, criticism, or rejection.”

When you are a child and your parent leaves home never to return, your cognitive processes are not fully developed to understand that everything that happened, was happening independent of who you are. For some, it could be falling out with friends in childhood, or even in the later years of growing up. The root of people feeling scared of being rejected usually lies in a variety of such experiences that end up staying ingrained in our subconscious minds.

In what ways does this fear manifest itself?


Being fearful of being rejected can manifest itself in different behavioral tendencies in different people. Here’s an example. You are in a relationship with someone you think is absolutely amazing. You love spending time with them and you love talking to them, so it is absolutely natural for you to want to update them about different things that happen in your life. You call them often, you visit them often, make plans to spend time with them, and go out of your way to ensure that they feel loved and cared for.

However, after a point, you go beyond what is even expected of you, because you are sure that if they feel loved, they will not leave you. On the other hand, your partner is the aloof kind – they seem indifferent and unconcerned, sometimes coming across as cold. They withdraw at random without any reason that you can see, thus hurting your feelings. Many such people, who seem indifferent to their significant other in a romantic relationship, are actually scared of being rejected too! So instead of letting themselves feel vulnerable in love, they behave distantly, because subconsciously they believe that it is better if they do not feel emotional in the first place because that way they will not be hurt if something were to go wrong. This is a typical example of avoidance, which is amongst the most popular coping mechanisms.


As is evidenced in the example above, people react to fear differently from each other. Different patterns of behavior that stem from this fear can end up causing great amounts of damage to individuals, as well as relationships.


Avoidance is just one of the few unhealthy coping mechanisms that people use to deal with the subsequent unpleasantness that comes from being scared. Other unhealthy coping mechanisms include projection, dominance as a means of compensation and an inflated sense of ego. These defense mechanisms make you feel temporarily safe and secure, but can be very unhealthy and detrimental for your mental, emotional and physiological states in the long run.

How to deal with the fear of rejection?


As the famous poet Rumi once said, “ The wound is where the light enters.” Often it is this pain which accelerates our inner healing potential and power and a lot of beauty, insight wisdom and awareness can emerge from the painful experiences in our life if we allow this as an opportunity for growth

We found Susan Andersons’s Book from Abandonment to Healing, an excellent approach with 5 powerful steps on healing abandonment and dealing with rejection issues that surface. It is also important to seek professional help through a qualified therapist who can facilitate a journey towards healing this. A combination of hypnotherapy, traditional psychotherapy and counseling approaches to deal with these fears and rise above them stronger, wiser and more empowered.


Dealing with the fear of being rejected is essential for you to overcome the negative effects of this fear. A few things to keep in mind to first reduce, and then do away with your fear, are given below.

It’s important to understand that the deep fear of rejection may not necessarily be for that specific person but simply a trigger for a subconscious memory that is very present in the body and brain. The thought of losing a person or feeling rejected allows those primal fears to resurface.

Remember that when someone rejects you, it is not personal. Everyone is in different phases of life at different times. Sometimes they are unable to give you what you require, and sometimes they do not think it is important for them to do so.

Hurt people hurt people and that is a crucial lesson to remember. Someone who has felt rejected before is likely to be coping with the problem by hurting someone else, without even realizing it.

You cannot please everyone, try as you might. No matter what you do, you will never be able to be in everyone’s good books. People will dislike you. People will want to turn you down. At Illuminations well-being Centre, we believe that if there is going to be a problem, no matter what you do, then you might as well do what you want to. When something makes you happy, the fear of rejection does not vanish but it does make you feel more safe and protected.

Learning to practice forgiveness is a very important way to deal with this fear. Once you understand that different people react to stimuli differently, you can begin to accept the same; then once you accept it, you realize that everyone has their own problems and when they reject you, it is best to learn that sometimes it is best to let go.

You can also visit Illuminations Well-Being Centre, Dubai and Abu Dhabi, if you are struggling with your fear of feeling rejected and isolated. We offer different services that can help you feel more confident about yourself, such as hypnotherapy, psychotherapy and counseling approaches, neurolinguistics programming and perhaps even experience sacred healing arts such as an energetic cord cutting and a spiritual karmic release which may help the process. To understand more about what these services are all about and how it can help you manage your fears and phobias, book a session with our counsellors now.

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