A letter about rejection
Updated: Sep 24
This is a letter about rejection
In life we must deal with rejection, if we are living a full life, pushing ourselves, taking risks, striving to be the best versions of ourselves and live our best lives, then rejection is going to be inevitable.
And sometimes we are the ones who have to do the rejecting. When it comes to personal relationships, sometimes that can feel harder than being the person who has been rejected.
When we have been rejected, we can be fuelled with righteous anger, and we can go and gain sympathy from friends who will console us and say things like 'they didn't deserve you anyway' or 'there are better things around the corner' and 'when one door closes another one opens.' That last one is a favourite of my dad's, who would say it to me when I lost a job or didn't get a job.
If you are the person who is telling another person that they are not right, for a job, for a romantic relationship, being picked for a team or any number of scenarios, it takes courage to let someone know that they are not being chosen. It takes empathy and great deal of humanity to let someone go. When it comes to personal relationships this is amplified. And it can keep people trapped in difficult situations. It takes great courage to end a marriage for example. Sometimes we can hang on so long to wait for someone else to break our hearts rather than choose to break someone else's. Everyone knows what it feels like to be rejected and depending on your personality type this can have a big impact on having the courage to say no to someone.
I still remember being at school and being chosen last for any sports team. I still don't play team sports, choosing sports and activities that are played largely alone instead. Where I am pushing myself and not 'letting anyone else down'. Things can stay with us all our lives.
The trouble is, being led by a fear of rejection and /or a fear of letting someone down, can leave you very stuck and ultimately can lead to more heartbreak in the long run. It is so important to understand the impact you have on someone's life; what they take from your words and the feeling you leave them with after you have spoken. And we must also give others credit for being able to take ownership of their own pain and subsequent healing.
We all have personal responsibility to ourselves and to others and I believe that if the driving force is love, we can make sure we are making the impact on the world that we hope to have.
As I write this I am reminded of a beautiful book that I return to often, The Four Agreements, A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom. Toltec wisdom written by Miguel Angel Ruiz.
The Four Agreements are:
We must face the fear of rejection to even go for the things we want. If fear of rejection drives us, we would never download a dating app, apply for that job, or approach another to ask for something in the first place. Fear of rejection is another way of having a fear of failure. But if we don't take the risk and try, we fail by default.
And some risks are worth taking, because even if you are rejected 100 times, you only need one yes. And that one yes might be the one that changes your life.
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