How to Get Over the Fear of Rejection in Dating

P. J. Aitken

Nov 16 2020

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Rejection is hard to deal with and the fear of rejection prevents many singletons from making a move. But you can’t win the raffle if you don’t buy a ticket, and that fear is almost certainly holding you back.

To help you with your fear of rejection, take a look at these top tips.

Why Do We Fear Rejection?

If you approach things logically, humans shouldn’t care about rejection.

There are plenty of fish in the sea—if one person rejects you, just move onto the next.

Take an online dating site as an example. If someone doesn’t respond to your messages or rejects your date request, you can just move onto the next one.

Furthermore, you know not to take the rejection personally. Maybe their inbox was full, maybe they are shy or busy, maybe there was a misunderstanding.

The odds are firmly in your favour and there’s no need to feel bad, and yet we do. The majority of us know all of these things and can approach things logically, but that doesn’t stop us from feeling a little dejected.

Experts suggest that these feelings might be hardwired. Humans are social creatures. Our ancestors lived in tribal groups and relied on one another for protection. If they were cast out of the group, that protection disappeared, they were exposed to the elements and wild animals, and they didn’t last long.

It’s possible that our fear of rejection has been bred into us over thousands and thousands of years. Humans who feared rejection tried their best to avoid it, doing what they could to appease the group. They knew that if they were rejected, there was a chance they would be ostracised, and that was a pretty scary prospect.

Still, just because those feelings are innate doesn’t mean you can’t overcome them.

How to Deal with Rejection

There are a few things you can do to overcome your fear of rejection.

1. Don’t Take it Personally

There are many reasons why someone might reject you and most of them have nothing to do with the way you look or act.

And even when they do, so what?

You can’t be everyone’s cup of tea. You have your type. For someone to be right for you, they need to look and act a certain way, and the same is true for everyone else.

If you’re rejected, it doesn’t mean you’re not as good looking or as pleasant as you thought. It just means they’re looking for something else.

2. Understand that It’s Better Than the Alternative

Fear of rejection can be crippling, so much so that it prevents people from sending messages and even using online dating sites.

But it’s important to put things into perspective.

What’s worse, spending the next Valentine’s Day alone or receiving a few succinct rejections from people you have never met? And would you rather have a few conversations that end nowhere and a few dates that end in disappointment, or spend the rest of your life alone?

It’s a pretty harsh way of looking at it, but it’s true.

You need to put yourself out there if you want to find someone, and that means placing yourself at risk of rejection.

Don’t let your fear of rejection prevent you from finding Mr. or Mrs. Right.

happy couple

3. Be Prolific

Sometimes, more rejections are easier to handle and this is especially true with online dating.

If you spend a lot of time browsing someone’s profile, constructing an opening message, and then waiting for a reply, you’re going to be pretty disheartened when they don’t reply.

On the flip side, if you don’t pay much attention to their profiles and send quick messages to a dozen people, you won’t care that much when one, two, or even all twelve of them ignore you.

Sure, the sadness might strike if everyone rejects you, but the odds of getting a reply increase with every additional person that you message.

And if just one person replies and engages you in a pleasant conversion, you won’t care about the other eleven.

4. Learn from Your Rejections

The happiest and most successful people in the world have received countless rejections during the course of their lives.

An author, poet, or scriptwriter rarely succeeds with their first proposal. An actor doesn’t secure every audition and a musician doesn’t nail every gig.

woman sitting on bed journaling

All of your heroes have been rejected more times than they can count, and rather than letting that rejection get the better of them, they used it to improve their lives.

You can learn a lot from rejection, and this is as true for online dating as it is anything else. If you’re rejected 20 times in a row, there’s a good chance you’re doing something wrong.

Maybe you’re coming across as too arrogant or aggressive; maybe your command of language is terrible or you’re expecting too much from your messages.

Use your rejections to fine-tune your process.

Read, study, and learn.

For more information on improving your chances, take a look at our guides on How to Get More Matches and Dating Green Flags.

5. Find More Suitable Matches

Stop messaging people just because of the way they look. You might think that’s all that matters, but the recipient probably doesn’t think the same.

Stick with dating sites that find matches based on your personality and a matchmaking questionnaire. That way, they’ll see that you’re a good match and will pay more attention to your message.

What’s more, if you eventually engage them in conversation, being a good match will improve your odds of arranging a successful date.

Some of the best sites for online matchmaking include eHarmony and Match.

Summary: How to Deal with Rejection

If you’re an anxious dater who spends a lot of time humming and harring on dating sites, this could be the most important dating advice you ever read!

Of course, it’s easier said than done. It’s not something you can eradicate with a few logical thoughts and words of encouragement.

You have more chance of dying in a car accident than a plane crash. That’s true, and by quite some distance, but if someone’s scared of flying, you’re not going to cure them with that fact alone.

However, you can cure them by gradually exposing them to airports and airplanes, and it’s the same story with a fear of rejection.

So, take a look at the tips outlined above, keep this dating advice in mind, and start putting yourself out there!

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