Filed Under (Life Coaching & NLP) on 31-05-2013
A major source of stress in life is the fear of rejection, criticism, or disapproval. Fear of rejection manifests itself in an overconcern for (dis)approval by others. Fear of rejection is often learned in early childhood as the result of a parent giving the child what psychologists call conditional love. Many parents made the mistake of giving love and approval only when their children did something that the parents wanted them to do. A person who grew up with conditional love tends to seek unconditional approval from others. In adulthood this need for approval from the parent is transferred to the workplace and the boss. The employee can become preoccupied with the boss’s opinion. This preoccupation can lead to an obsession to perform to some undetermined high standard.
This behavior varies from mild to extreme forms. People who display forms on the extreme end of the continuum usually put so much pressure on themselves to perform in order to please their bosses / partners / others that they burn themselves out. They often die of heart attacks. This behavior triggered by conditional love in childhood is a very serious stress-related phenomenon in the Western workplace.
2 things you can do immediately to deal with fear of rejection, criticism, or disapproval:
- realize and accept that others’ opinions are not important enough for you to feel stressed, unhappy, or overconcerned about them. Even if they dislike you entirely, it has nothing to do with your worth and value as a person.
- refuse to be overconcerned about what you think people are thinking about you. In reality most people are not thinking about you at all. Relax and get on with your life.