Rejection therapy? - Social Anxiety Forum
 
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-19-2020, 12:06 PM Thread Starter
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Rejection therapy?


Hi there folks,

I'm wondering has anyone here tried 'rejection therapy'. It basically where you make a practice of deliberately putting youself in social situations where you're likely to be rejected in order to overcome your fear of it. I did it years ago, and did all sorts of silly (funny) things, like inviting myself to sit at complete stranger's tables at restaurants, and it had a hugely transformative impact on me. Has to be done in a sensible way of course - not putting yourself at any real physical risk, but more doing silly things to confront the fear of people thinking you're weird...

Hugs,
Lucas
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 07:36 AM
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I did something similar to this. But wow this is definitely a good idea and cool to do with a friend because doing it alone might be tough without courageous support.

Might I just add, when you do an exercise like this, you will absolutely start feeling all the triggers, sensations, and feelings in your stomach and chest. This is good feedback so you can dive into those, feel all of them fully, and they will run their course and eventually dissolve. Then everyday, sit in a chair, close your eyes, and feel them. That's truly surrendering and letting them go.

Remember, your views and what you have to say matter to others AND to yourself
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 10:42 AM
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If it helps.

Just curious, though:
Why did you find trying out intentional inappropriate/obtrusive behavior more appealing than trying normal exposure?

Has it led to you feeling actually comfortable/indifferent in every day social situations? Or is it rather like feeling superior to the others now, because you conquered/fooled your "enemy?"
Can you actually deal with rejection now?

Since most of us SAs are really terribly uncomfortable with annoying/obtrusive behavior shown towards us, I can't help but feeling uneasy, thinking about applying exactly this behavior towards poor uninvolved.

You know what I mean? Kind of disrespectful/crossing personal limits of others.
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 01:14 PM Thread Starter
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Hi there GermanHermit and MyViewsMatter,

@GermanHermit , in answer to your questions I almost never did things that were really intrusive... once or twice I walked up to tables of folks at bars or a restaurant, and just said 'can I join you?'... funnily enough they generally said yes and we had some fun... 99.9% of the time I just did things like striking up conversations with strangers on the bus or things like that - things that made me, as someone with SAD, incredibly nervous, but aren't all that unusual for others... the thing that really helped me by very occasionally doing things that were a bit more 'radical', was it taught me that the physical experience of the fear/anxiety tops out - it's like I can only reach a certain level of maximum anxiety and then there's nowhere else for it to go, and that helped me hugely by helping me lose my fear of the fear... having recently moved to a country where I don't speak the language, one of the things I want to work on is just speaking it with people in the day-to-day, which hardly qualifies as aggressive or overbearing....

As for superiority/enemy, I'm not sure how your inferring that from what I said... I've never seen others as 'enemies' or antagonists in any way - my fear is my issue... and it never gave me any feelings of superiority, though it certainly enabled me to engage respectfully with others with a feeling of equality...

I hope all's well with you,

Lucas
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 05:30 PM
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Never heard of that...

Even shy people can be sassy sometimes...
I'll put drunk raccoon in my signature as well, because I CAN...
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 07:31 PM
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To be helpful, everyone gets rejected, even you reject people so we shouldn't be anxious about it. it's a very sad thing but we just have to accept it if it happens and move on.
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 09:16 PM
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I think a variation of this technique is called shame attacking or flooding. Can be very effective for some while making others worse. Combined with cbt would make it more effective.
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 09:32 PM
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you disgust me and i reject the entire concept of rejection theory.



i feel like my faux-disgust will be moderated away. but i'm testing the theory. so....

"I take what is mine. I pay the iron price."
―Balon Greyjoy
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 10:13 PM
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you disgust me and i reject the entire concept of rejection theory.



i feel like my faux-disgust will be moderated away. but i'm testing the theory. so....
My jaw just dropped.

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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 11:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ZenDancer View Post
Hi there folks,

I'm wondering has anyone here tried 'rejection therapy'. It basically where you make a practice of deliberately putting youself in social situations where you're likely to be rejected in order to overcome your fear of it.
To put it mildly, this does not sound like a good idea. Every day we have people show up here who are so angry they can't think right about having been rejected all their lives. I think if abusing yourself was ever going to help (for most people) they wouldn't be here saying they're frustrated beyond all reason because of it.

Also, doing things like imposing on other people and forcing them to confront you is probably also a good way to start a fight and get a criminal record. Which you might really regret if you ever decide to work somewhere where that matters.

/WYSD
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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-20-2020, 11:40 PM
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Doesn't sound like my cup of tea.

And @andy1984 I'm deeply offended and never speaking to you again.
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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-21-2020, 12:13 AM
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Doesn't sound like my cup of tea.

And @andy1984 I'm deeply offended and never speaking to you again.
I have recieved your rejection and am now immune to any further rejection

"I take what is mine. I pay the iron price."
―Balon Greyjoy
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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-21-2020, 12:15 AM
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I have recieved your rejection and am now immune to any further rejection
Excellent. Everything's working out nicely so far mate.
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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-21-2020, 12:27 AM
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Excellent. Everything's working out nicely so far mate.
oh no seems like you've retracted your rejection and I'm vulnerable to it again!!!

"I take what is mine. I pay the iron price."
―Balon Greyjoy
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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-21-2020, 12:31 AM
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oh no seems like you've retracted your rejection and I'm vulnerable to it again!!!
Don't worry - I'll see what I can do.
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post #16 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-21-2020, 01:33 AM
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@ZenDancer : Thanks for your objective answer of my post!
Your approach makes sense to me now. Not behaving stupid /silly, but basically just testing socialising with strangers and bearing any negative/stress feelings. That's good.
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post #17 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-21-2020, 04:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andy1984 View Post
you disgust me and i reject the entire concept of rejection theory.



i feel like my faux-disgust will be moderated away. but i'm testing the theory. so....
that's hurtful, he didn't say anything bad. congratulations ZenDancer
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