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Why Successful People Aren’t Afraid of Rejection

Why Successful People Aren’t Afraid of Rejection

Imagine two scenarios. In the first, we have Jesse, who walks into the room to give a talk and everyone stares. She feels nervous and awkward. She immediately zeros in on two women in the front row whispering and she’s convinced they’re talking about her appearance. She knew she shouldn’t have worn the outfit she chose. Jesse believes she’s fat, unattractive, and not good enough. Her husband left her a few years ago and she’s never gotten over it.

In the next scenario we have Kim. She walks into the room to give a talk and the same thing happens — everyone stares. Kim feels a little nervous but tells herself she’s prepared and ready to do this. She see’s the ladies in the front row whispering but pays them no mind. Kim has done a lot of personal work to get where she is today. Her husband left her but she picked herself up, went back to school, did some counselling, and is making the most of her life now. She could stand to lose a few pounds but she recognizes she looks good for her age. Most importantly, she lives a healthy lifestyle.

In both cases, the situations are very much the same, but the thoughts and feelings given in response to the circumstances are profoundly different because of several factors. These key elements are what make successful people fearless when it comes to the thought of rejection. Let’s take a look at them.

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Self-Talk

The first key factor that determines our mood and emotional wellbeing is our self-talk. What we say to ourselves in response to any given situation vastly determines how we feel. In the first scenario, Jesse has nothing good to say to herself. She also makes several thinking errors which she is totally unaware of. For example, she jumps to conclusions that the women whispering are talking about her, thus she feels rejection. She also erroneously believes her outfit and her weight could be the cause of the gossip. Kim, on the other hand, has positive self-talk. She accepts herself just as she is. She worked hard to take the necessary healing steps after the ultimate rejection of divorce by going to therapy.

Accepting Responsibility

The truth is that you alone are responsible for how you feel (barring any medical or severe psychological problems). It’s easy to blame our problems on someone or something, but in the end, the choice is ours as to how we will respond to adversity or rejection. Successful people accept responsibility and take charge of their lives. Kim could have chosen to be bitter and angry about what happened to her, but she chose not to allow the rejection she experienced to hold her back. The realization that you are responsible for your thoughts, attitudes, actions, and beliefs is empowering once you hone in on it.

Recognizing Thinking Errors

Successful people learn to recognize errors in their thinking that may cause them needless turmoil and lead them to feel rejected by others. Here are a few to be aware of:

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Jumping to conclusions: You make negative interpretations even though the evidence doesn’t support your beliefs.

Generalizing: You see a single negative event as a never-ending pattern.

Mind Reading: You conclude someone is feeling negatively toward you but you have no evidence to support the belief.

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Fortune Telling: You assume your negative predictions are already established facts.

Catastrophizing: You attribute negative and horrible consequences to the outcome of events.

Beliefs

Our negative self-talk and our feelings of rejection are simply a response to our belief systems. Beliefs are powerful because we always act based on what we believe. Successful people don’t fear rejection because they’ve learned to love themselves. They realize their imperfections. They consciously choose to believe the best and they work at developing positive counterstatements to contradict negative beliefs about themselves and others.

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Learning to be Comfortable Being Uncomfortable

Successful people have learned to sit with the uncomfortable feelings of rejection. They have strategies to help them process difficult emotions, like deep breathing, muscle relaxation, journaling, and exercise. They understand that life is difficult and bad things sometimes happen. They also know not everyone will like them. They are secure because they aren’t trusting in others to meet their needs.

Resiliency

Successful people have developed strong resiliency skills. They are less self-critical, they see the glass half full, they learn to believe they are capable, and they develop good problem-solving skills.

Successful people aren’t robots. When they feel rejected, they have thoughts, feelings, and beliefs just like the rest of us, but they choose to work through them in adaptive ways. They realize that while rejection can be painful, it’s a normal part of life.

If you’re tired of ruminating about being rejected, start implementing these strategies. Start paying attention to what you do when you experience rejection. List your beliefs. Notice and challenge thinking errors. Develop positive counterstatements. These will be the first steps to developing the awareness necessary for change to occur.

Featured photo credit: Rita Schulte via media.lifehack.org

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Rita Schulte LPC

Licensed Professional Counselor

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Last Updated on December 9, 2019

5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

Everyone experiences mental stress at one time or another. Maybe you’re starting a new career, job, or business, or you feel incredibly overwhelmed between work, parenting, and your love life (or a lack of it). It could even be that you simply feel that you have way too much to do and not enough time to do it,  plus, on top of everything, nothing seems to be going the way it should!

Yup, we all experience mental stress from time-to-time, and that’s okay as long as you have the tools, techniques and knowledge that allow you to fully relieve it once it comes.

Here are 5 tips for relieving mental stress when it comes so you can function at your best while feeling good (and doing well) in work, love, or life:

1. Get Rationally Optimistic

Mental stress starts with your perception of your experiences. For instance, most people get stressed out when they perceive their reality as “being wrong” in some way. Essentially, they have a set idea of how things “should be” at any given moment, and when reality ends up being different (not even necessarily bad), they get stressed.

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This process is simply a result of perception and can be easily “fixed” by recognizing that although life might not always be going as YOU think it should, it’s still going as it should—for your own benefit.

In fact, once you fully recognize that everything in your life ultimately happens for your own growth, progress, and development—so you can achieve your goals and dreams—your perception works in your favor. You soon process and respond to your experience of life differently, for your advantage. That’s the essence of becoming “rationally optimistic.”

The result: no more mental stress.

2. Unplug

Just like you might need to unplug your computer when it starts acting all crazy, you should also “unplug” your mind.

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How on earth do you unplug your mind? Simple: just meditate.

It isn’t nearly difficult or complicated as some people think, so, if you don’t already meditate, give it a try. Whether you meditate for 5 minutes, 30 minutes, or 2 hours, this is a surefire way to reduce mental stress.

Meditation has been scientifically proven to relax your body (resulting in less mental stress), while also reducing anxiety and high blood pressure.

3. Easy on the Caffeine

Yes, we know, we know—everyone loves a nice java buzz, and that’s okay, but there’s a fine line between a small caffeine pick-me-up and a racing heart and mind that throws you into a frenzy of mental stress.

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Try giving up caffeine for a while and see how you feel. And, if that’s completely out of the question for you, at least try to minimize it. You might find that lots of your mental stress mysteriously “disappears” as your caffeine intake goes down.

4. Attack Mental Stress Via the Back Door

That’s right: your body and mind are part of the whole being, and are constantly influencing and affecting each other. If you’re experiencing a lot of mental stress, try to reduce it by calming your body down—a calm body equals a calmer mind.

How do you calm your body down and reduce physical stress? A  great way to reduce physical stress (thereby reducing mental stress) is to take natural supplements that are proven to reduce stress and anxiety while lifting your mood. Three good ones to look into are kava-kava, St John’s wort, and rhodiola rosea:

  • Kava-kava is a natural plant known to have mild sedative properties, and you should be able to find it at your natural health food store or vitamin store. It’s available in capsules or liquid extract form.
  • St John’s wort is a natural flower used to treat depression. Again, it’s found at your local health store in capsules or liquid. Because it uplifts mood (enabling you to see the brighter side of all experiences) it helps relieve mental stress as well.
  • Rhodiola rosea is a natural plant shown to reduce stress and uplift mood, and Russian athletes have been using it forever. Like the other two supplements mentioned, rhodiola rosea can be found at your natural health store in capsule or liquid form.

While these supplements are all natural and can be very helpful for most people, always check with your health care provider first as they can cause side-effects depending on your current health situation etc.

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5. Good Old-Fashioned Exercise

This tip has been around forever because it works. Nothing relieves mental stress like running, kickboxing—you name it. Anything super-physical will wipe out most of your mental stresses once the exercise endorphins (happy chemicals) are released into your brain.

The result: mental stress will be gone!

So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed or just plain stressed, try using some of the above tips. You can even print this out or save it to refer to regularly.

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