Rejection Proof

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I recently listened to a Ted Radio Hour Podcast entitled, “A Better You” and was rapt by the story of Jia Jiang who became so paralyzed by the fear of rejection that he was unhappy with his own unhappiness.  This story stopped me in my tracks. How many of us are on this spectrum? Afraid to make the next ask.  Putting off taking that leap and trying the next new idea. Still not speaking up in meetings or worse yet, afraid to look in the mirror and take responsibility for your own truth.  What worlds could you conquer if you were “Rejection Proof?”

Because the Universe is kind, this Podcast was super timely.  Just recently someone gave me a tongue lashing because they were unhappy, and decided the best way to handle it was to lambast me.  I felt a deep sense of rejection and I dedicated precious time trying to shake it off. Why should I take on the rejection of others?  I was reminded that we are all connected. She felt rejected, so she rejected me, and as sure as shit, if I don’t stay present and “woke” I will reject someone else.  Probably my husband would suffer because it’s always easiest to hurt the ones closest to you, isn’t it? Or maybe it will be the unassuming poor young lady at Starbucks for delivering me this luke-warm cup of coffee or some equally horrific offense.

You see, rejection doesn’t know levels.  Either you feel accepted or you feel rejected.  The remedy is to get over it. The question is HOW?  The person who fails in business feels just as rejected as the person who just got dumped in a relationship or is unappreciated by their family.  It doesn’t work to feel a little less rejection. It’s sticky stuff. It’ll just come right back the next time someone looks at you wrong, and then you’re like, “See that?  How DARE SHE!?!?!?”

So what, now what?  What to do? Well, because I practice mindfulness I coached myself into immediate presence.  I went on a walk. Came home and took a bubble bath. I searched for wisdom and contemplated guidance on forgiveness. What lingered for months and years in resentment in my youth, only took a few days to turn over, and I’m proud of that.  One day I’ll walk in God’s presence so closely that I won’t have to search for answers, I will be breathing them in with each moment. Now my husband and the barista have been spared my salacious wrath. And for extra measure, I’m practicing Manifesting Grace through Gratitude in a 21-Day Meditation Experience with Deepak and Oprah. Again, thank you Universe for your perfect timing.

Jia Jiang goes through 100 days of intentional rejection just to build that muscle and ended up writing a book called Rejection Proof.  He learned how not to run away from a situation, but to face it.  It was incredibly entertaining and eye-opening. If you have time, check out his TedTalk.

Scan your own life.  What are you tip-toeing around for fear of rejection?  Make a decision to go face it square on, find acceptance for whatever comes, and let it wash away like bubbles down the drain after a good bubble bath soak.  But whatever you do, please, please, please for goodness’ sake, don’t pass it on. Presence is my rejection therapy. But I like Jia’s too.

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