Fear of rejection is a fear deeply ingrained in our human DNA. Long ago, in tribal communities, we were part of a community. This fear is a part of our primitive brain is designed to keep us safe. Nowadays it is more about individualism. We are breaking out of familial patterns and becoming independent.
Taking risks, going out into the world, and becoming the best we can be. As women, this evolution is even greater! For the first time women are breaking out of their traditional roles and even becoming the breadwinners of the family. So, when it comes to fear of rejection, you can see we are really breaking our biology!
That’s the great news. The bad news? We still gotta work on that neural pathway! It’s a practice. I decided to create a systematic 4-step process for you to discover your own hidden fears of rejection and use this fear as a source of empowerment and liberation. Let’s get started!
4-Step Process to Change
This first step is the mother of all – awareness. Without awareness, you won’t know how this fear is manifesting in your life. God gave us the capacity to be aware so we could have dominion over our lives – this is why He gave us free will. By seeing where we are allowing fear to hold us back, we can break the bonds of limitation and acquire greater freedom for ourselves and our Spirit.
Let’s personify the fear of rejection as a character (archetype) so we can gain a greater awareness of it. Let’s call her Stacy – The People Pleaser. Stacy is the kinda gal who cares what people think about her, and is super scared of being judged by someone else. She cares a lot about what others think, allowing it to dictate her perception of herself. She may pay a lot of attention to her appearance and wear a lot of status symbols. Insight courtesy of Solancha.
Sound familiar? Everyone of us is subject to this throughout stages in our lives to varying degrees. But, if it is inhibiting you from doing what you really want to do then it is standing in the way of your better life. How does this fear manifest in your life?
Now that we are aware of this pattern of behaviour, we can take responsibility for it. Responsibility does not mean fault finding or blaming oneself (which would be unproductive), it just means now it is up to us to shift our behaviour in a way that is useful for us. Responsibility is about designing the life you want to live and taking stock of the habits you need to change in order to become the person you want to be.
What is responsibility? Completing your tasks, sticking to a schedule, pushing yourself to do the things you know you need to do when you need to do them. It involves sacrifice, time, and commitment. It is the decision to believe that we are the ones in charge of our lives. Although we can get great advice from others, we are the ones who must apply it.
Now that you have the awareness of how the fear of rejection manifests, what are you willing to change in order to overcome it?
The third step is to take action. We are now aware of the fear of rejection and how it manifests in our life and we have made the decision to take responsibility for it. Next, we must apply what we have learned as a living practice to our life. Notice I say living. Everything is a practice, from moment to moment. We have the awareness to see how our fear is inhibiting us and now we must take action and make the necessary changes.
What is stopping you from doing what you want to do? Take a small step and do something about it. It can be as little as setting a date to try a new class outside of your comfort zone. The point is, take one small step right now.
The last and final step is observation. After you have taken action and made your decision, now observe your mind. Observe yourself – do you want to change it? Do you feel fear sweeping over you? Are you second guessing? Well, don’t. Now that you’ve made your decision, live with the consequences. There is no right answer. But the action you have just taken is one step closer to leaving your fear of rejection behind.
Don’t allow your fear to lead you into indecision. Rome wasn’t built in a day, but you have luckily taken one step toward freedom. And that freedom is from the fear of rejection. Congratulations!
Now that we have gone over what the fear of rejection is, how to gain awareness of it, and the steps you need to take to overcome it I hope you have a good idea of how you can apply this to your life. No matter what the fear, it can be overcome if we take the steps to manage it and exercise power over it. There are millions of successful people in this world. In order to achieve, they have had to face their fears. If they can do it, so can you! As Winnie the Pooh says “You are braver than you believe, smarter than you seem, and stronger than you think.” I would have to agree.
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