Note: More to Life with Faith and Lois is designed to be heard, not read. We hope you’ll listen to the audio, which includes emotion and emphasis that won’t be on this page. Our transcripts are generated with speech recognition software and may contain errors. 

 

Lois                        

Welcome to the podcast, More to Life with Faith and Lois.

Faith                   

I’m Faith

Lois                          

And I’m Lois.

Faith                      

Our podcast explores life’s many transitions that inspire and daunt us.

Lois                       

Welcome back, Faith.

Faith

It’s really good to be here today. It’s a little chilly outside but it’s warm in here.

Lois                         

We are in a brand new week and boy, we’ve got a tough discussion coming up. The goal that we have in everything we’re doing is to provide more to life and hope that you will grab onto these bits and pieces no matter where you are.

Faith                    

So even when we discuss some of the tougher topics, there is still so much more to life in them. And that’s what we always try to bring to light is that no matter what you face, there is a way through it. And there’s more to life.

Lois                        

I know. Spring’s around the corner, isn’t it? Oh yeah, I sure hope so. We are just so glad that so many of you are joining us on our journey of transitions in our podcasts and that’s what we’re going through. So we’d like to ask you if you would take a moment to rate our podcast on whatever platform that you’re listening to right now. You could just let us know how we are resonating with you and then check out what we’re up to on our website. It’s .www.moretolifewithfaithandlois.com That would be so awesome. Oh, we would love that. And remember every week we do recap our podcast in a Facebook live post so you can actually see how we look back at that. And you can watch it live, you can watch it later or you can find it in the video section back on our website. We’re doing a lot of stuff trying to get out there, and it’s a lot of fun. The transition we’re talking about today is one that really none of us revel in facing at all. This one stings. It’s very hard and most of us avoid this at all costs. And yet here we are with Episode 63. Transition: The Impact of Rejection and Alienation.

Faith                     

And we don’t like to be rejected. And the last thing we want to be is alienated from anyone that we care about or even strangers. We want that acceptance in life. And so this is a little tough, but we’re going to walk you through it today.

Lois                       

We are in rejection and alienation. It seems faith to have escalated in the past few years. And I, and I’m not sure if it’s because we are separated in a way because of social media, so we can say things in a more blistering fashion very easily. Or if it’s just because our family units are more spread out over the miles, but there are some things that are adding together that I hear rejection and alienation far more commonly, I think, than I have in years past.

Faith                     

I agree with you and one of the things is there’s a lot of alienation and rejection if you don’t believe like another person. And that’s escalated over the last few years politically and in our society in various ways, like you should agree with me. And the acceptance of having different points of views is slowly fading away, which is not a good thing.

Lois                       

And you know, maybe you use a dating site. Yes. And so there’s immediate rejection there. If nope, not going to look at that person or I don’t care for this person. So you use a rejection model in a sense as you’re going through life or emails, you know, so many of us, instead of picking up the phone and being able to clear something up, we use text or email and we can get things lost in translation that we don’t even intend to come across as rejecting someone or alienating someone.

Faith                   

Right, right. What is so important is to find out why do we respond to someone and not accepting us? That usually has some old roots in there of some old pain and some serious rejections that we’ve had in life. So even the small things like you can have a clerk get upset with you in the line as they’re checking you out and you feel the rejection of that. That can impact some people. So that shouldn’t, but it does. What we’re going to talk about today is how does that get there and what can we do about it?

Lois                       

As we get ready to start Faith, what does the feeling of rejection bring up for you?

Faith                    

Well, upset stomach headache, fear. Just this feeling that wanting to recoil pull inward and to run. Some people want to run away, others get angry and want to react and get defensive and take the person on. So there’s a variety of reactions that can rise up when we feel it. But mostly it’s the feeling of I am not wanted, I am not seeing, I am not valued and nobody wants me. That hurts. It does hurt.

Lois                      

That doesn’t feel good at all. I find that if I’m rejected, I try to figure out why it happened and then I just keep piling on. Like, oh well I’m not only not wanted, I’m not good enough. I didn’t do this the right way. And then everything I think about myself gets put under a lens and I keep piling on, well what if I did this? And, and it just becomes bigger than it ever was. When it’s a small thing, like you said, a clerk said and I walk out of the store with, I have ruined life for 25 people. Who were all waiting in line. It’s like a one two punch, right? You get hit and then you say, oh, there must be something far more going on that’s bad with me. And we don’t do this all the time. But you know what I’m talking about because we do it enough that that’s part of why I think we avoid it. We run from it and we don’t deal with an issue thinking I’ll deal with that later because I don’t want to feel like that.

Faith                   

Yes. And, and the missing piece in all of that that you’re describing is that there’s something missing about not knowing who you really are. It comes back to that identity piece every single time. If you really know who you are, then you can feel the sting initially. But then immediately, oh, rise up. Well that’s, but that’s not who I am. And so they may see me that way or they may have said those things to me, but that cannot fully define me. And so we tend to react to a rejection or alienation when there’s something missing within ourselves. So there is an opportunity when we feel rejection and alienation to say what’s missing?

Lois                      

And let’s dive into that because in the next few minutes, pardon me, we really would like to explore the impact of rejection and alienation and also some ideas on how to re-establish the confidence that you’ve lost. Because everything that Faith and I are talking about right now involves this confidence being kind of hit up the side of the head and it doesn’t feel good. So, first of all though, we mentioned it from the get go and that is that rejection hurts.

Faith                   

Oh boy, does it ever.

Lois                        

It physically hurts. And the interesting part about this, and you probably have heard this, but there is science out there that our brains respond similarly to rejection and physical pain. And if you’d like to look up an article by PNAS, much more intelligent folks that than me at least, maybe not then faith, but certainly than me: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA. These are scientists that actually put people in MRI machines, Faith. And they were people who had felt intensely rejected as a result of experiencing a romantic relation breakup. And what they discovered was that the neurons that were going off in someone’s brain were the same ones, if you are physically hit. It just shows how powerful it is to be rejected. And they were given images of their exes and the reactions that came up when it was a breakup that really was a painful one. We are acknowledging this on your behalf just to say that we understand that rejection and alienation hurts. So when we are looking forward to these ways that maybe you can walk through it, we’re never denying the pain that surrounds it.

Faith                    

It’s very real. And the other piece about that is that once you have that physical pain, the from the emotional pain, you’re also more susceptible to getting other illnesses. And that’s why a lot of times when people are in that deep, deep pain, and death can cause it. It can feel like if someone dies, you’ve been rejected, you left me. And so those feelings can leave you in so much pain that then your immune system begins to break down. So it’s so important to know that if you have a legitimate time of a breakup or a loss of someone that you loved and you feel the rejection of that, take extra good care of yourself during those times for sure, because you’re going to be susceptible to getting other illnesses. It’s real. Our bodies, our minds, our spirits, our souls cannot be separated. They’re all joined together and they play off each other.

Lois                      

We’re in Episode 63 the impact of rejection and alienation. And our first point is just to walk alongside and say, we get it. This is super painful. It hurts. Even as many of us are trying to work through these kinds of things. We know the pain of it. Another thing that happens with rejection and alienation is that we turn it on ourselves and this is what I was talking about earlier, Faith, when it was like – I pile on It’s like it’s not enough to just say this is a situation. Then for some of us, we decided to blame ourselves because we don’t know what to do. If I look at you and you don’t like me and I don’t know how to fix you, then maybe if I just fixed myself that you would like me again.

Faith                    

Right. It gets back into the performance. If I’d only done it better if I had only improved if I had only studied more, if I had only calculated correctly, whatever that response is, it’s you’re taking the full responsibility of something that hasn’t worked out.

Lois                      

And is that why then we find fault in ourselves when we’ve been rejected?

Faith                 

Absolutely. Yeah. We did something wrong. It goes both ways. We blame and then we blame the person and then we blame ourselves. And sometimes it can stay focused too much on it’s that person’s fault or someone else’s fault or everyone else’s fault and not mine. Or it’s all my fault. It’s, you know, I’m the loser here. Either way is an extreme and you’ve got to look at it more realistically and go, we’re both involved in this and we’re both impacted. Even the clerk, she was having a bad day and she didn’t take responsibility for that. And she put it out there and you can walk away from it or you can take it on and say, oh, that’s my fault. Or what’s wrong with that woman? You know? Instead of saying, wow, that happened and how could I responded in a way. So it’s never going to one way or the other, it’s about what is going on here?

Lois                       

So pay attention. You notice that you are beginning to blame yourself more than necessary. And we all know when we do this, by the way, or if you’re blaming someone else more than necessary. Those are two things that are screaming out for attention that all have to do with rejection and alienation. And I think it’s how we protect ourselves. Exactly. We’re like turtles, right? You know, sometimes we pull in sometimes we pull out and show our teeth, but it’s all to find a way to protect ourselves through this.

Faith                

We’re trying to cope with that pain, that sting, that initial feeling that happens and you know, and that’s why even on the road if someone cuts you off, you can feel rejection even in that, you know, it’s like, why would you do that? To me it’s like you make it personal when indeed it’s not. It’s about something else going on in the other person.

Lois                        

And that leads beautifully into our next point, which is we forget to reason, when we feel rejected.

Faith                  

It’s is all thrown out the window.

Lois                       

Which is why when someone cuts you off, suddenly it becomes all about you are all about them. Or a total stranger. Right. You know, I love sports. You love sports. I go to a game, there’s somebody who doesn’t like my team sitting somewhere near me and I have just cheered and then I get berated for standing up and that’s something I do probably too much at games and I will feel so rejected and so foolish that I have caused this kind of consternation in somebody. They’re a stranger, it doesn’t matter, and they’re the opposing team. I don’t even want them on my team and I feel the rejection. I mean, you’re laughing now and you know exactly what I need this because you end up getting something happens inside you, your stomach goes upside down and it’s like reason just went out the window. Exactly. Of course they’re going to reject me. We’re on opposite teams and that’s again.

Faith                

It’s coming from a place of, wait, why don’t you love me? When you’re at events like that, you’re not going to be loved if you’re of the oppositional team. However, that plays into all the other types of rejection that we come up against and we have to look at it and just go, wait a minute, what is really going on here? What do I really take on and it’s an opportunity. I cannot emphasize this enough. It’s an opportunity for growth. If we really are reacting that way and we can’t be at a place of peace and at rest on things like that, we need to find out why is this happening? Where does this come from? Why does everybody have to love me? Why does everybody have to like me and if they don’t, what does that mean to me?

Lois                     

That is excellent because now we’ve taken three kind of icky feelings with rejection and alienation and we’re going to try to make a little bit of a shift here and the first shift is to really examine your inner voice when this is happening. Is the first thing that comes out, I knew you were wrong, you should never have come here, you’re so foolish to have even thought that this would work out for you. If that’s all you’re hearing, then your feelings of rejection are going to manifest even larger. They have no choice. There is another way. What if your inner voice says, is that true Lois? Right? Is that really true? What if, what if you could pause in that moment.

Faith                    

Right. And let’s keep this point too, is that what you feel is real? Okay. It’s a very real, so we’re not dismissing that. What you’re feeling in that moment is real and you need to deal with that. But there’s another piece. It’s not the entirety of reality. There’s more to the reality than just what you’re feeling. And if you can pause, like you said, and just ask the question, what more is going on here? Where is this coming from within me? But also within that other person, is this really personal or is this about them? Is there something about me that I need to correct or is it something that I just need to understand more? So there’s a broader, bigger reality going on, but when we get stung by rejection and alienation, we lose sight of it. So our responsibility is to be intentional of coming back and looking at the bigger picture. And that takes some effort because we just want to just pour into it. This is how I feel and I want to react to it. And that’s okay. In the moment, but catch it as soon as you can and say, I need to be responsible here and look at the bigger picture.

Lois                       

And when we do pause, we realize at some point we may not be able to reconcile or change up why we’re in the situation of rejection and alienation. There probably aren’t enormous amounts of this going on in your life, but you may have one or two situations where you can’t change what’s going on and there is nothing you can do. And if you can pause enough to look at this, is this true? Did I do this? Did they do this? And examine where is this coming from? Even though it’s not comfortable and it’s not the outcome you want, you can at least breathe and finish your grocery shopping with whatever you need to do. And we lighten this up because most of us have one or two areas in our life where the rejection is very real and it doesn’t go away. Our whole conversation today isn’t to say that you know what, you’re going to walk away from this and you’re not going to have this load. You may carry this or be in its presence for your entire life.

Faith                   

Yes. And if you’re one who truly suffers from an ongoing feeling of rejection that nobody accepts you, nobody sees you, nobody loves you, nobody connects to you, you’re not invited to the parties, you’re not invited to have a coffee. If you just feel like there’s one rejection after another, after another, please know that you can get through this and that you can figure out what is going on here because you’re a good person. You’re meant to be in relationship, and you’re meant to experience so much more. So don’t give up, you know, and seek out if this is really chronic for you, just hear me. I know that there’s people who have chronic rejection. That’s true. And so seek help for that. Let someone walk it out with you.

Lois                        

Because even if that situation doesn’t change, you can change. Yes, the other person may never be able to come back for whatever reason. But you can be whole and you are whole. Even right now when you feel like this, promise you. So – I heard this one time and I thought, what if you took every critical thought you could think of, especially in a relationship that doesn’t work out, that you wanted to be together? Write it down. What happens when you really look at that so that you can realize, oh, maybe this wasn’t meant to be at all. Because sometimes it’s hard for us to admit that when there’s a longtime relationship that’s broken up.

Faith                 

Sure. Oh absolutely. And writing it down would look like, what?

Lois                       

Well then I can actually look at it and read it and say, this really didn’t work and it will not work in the future. So maybe I will try to not do this again.

Faith                 

So it’s a learning experience, a learning experience, and that’s every one of these experiences we encounter as an opportunity to learn and to move beyond.

Lois                      

It’s excellent. So rejection can also benefit you when you switch things up. You know, if you’re alienated from a person or alienated from a group, flip it out. Are these the people that you resonate with and want to spend huge amounts of time with? It’s a fair question to ask. Maybe it didn’t fit from the get go, right?

Faith                  

Yeah. You need to figure out why am I here? Why am I hanging out? Maybe it is for work related issues so you need to hang out with these people because you have to. I mean, but that doesn’t mean you have to take on, maybe you have to work with them in the office space, but you can learn to disengage from the behaviors that are going on and to say, no, who am I going to be and how am I going to be that in the workplace? So how do you love, well, how do you care well? How are you kind and respectful even when those around you might not be? And don’t take if they’re not..personally.

Lois                       

That is so hard. And I think when we get to rejection and alienation, that is really the crux of it, isn’t it? That we take what people are taking away from us as a personal affront, right? When it really is about what they can or cannot tolerate and we have to figure out do we want to fit into that and keep forcing ourselves so that they will love us, which may not be possible.

Faith                  

Right. And again, coming back to why do I need them to like me when they’ve made it clear don’t want to.

Lois                       

Now, one of the final things we’d love to encourage you with when you’re feeling this rejection and alienation, one of the things we do is we forget that we have people around us who actually love us!

Faith                  

We can be such silly human beings. I mean seriously, you can have a hundred people around you that love you, care about you, see you and interact with you. But the one who doesn’t gets the attention, gets the focus. The spotlight is put on them. And again, that’s where the opportunity comes in. Like what is that hooking in us? What is it that it reminds us of. Because if it’s that strong, when you do have a good family or good friends who care about you, what is that old wound that gets ignited, that gets pushed when someone rejects us.

Lois                       

Right now if you can just in your mind, make a mental list of a few people that are really important to you, that you know, care about you, that you know you could share just about anything with, and they would be there alongside you as a contrast to a possible stranger or someone in their car who has rejected you that you can’t do anything about. If you can bring yourself back in your mind to, oh, this person really cares for me. And if I called them right now, they would talk to me. And this other person may not have coffee like I’ve been wanting, but this friend will be there for me. Right. And I think, I forget that when I’ve been rejected, I forget that, that I really have a cloud of the people around me, or two that would stand with me even in this tough time.

Faith                  

And that’s the confidence of knowing and believing, wait, my world is bigger than this one moment. And that’s coming and giving yourself that chance to look at the bigger, fuller reality of your life.

Lois                       

So if you’ve been rejected, we encourage you to revisit that situation. You know, decide whether there’s anything you can do about it or even want to do about it, or whether it’s time to leave that where it belongs behind you and surround yourself with people who care about you.

Faith                  

That’s so important. So thank you for taking some time to grapple with rejection, hopefully with a fresh perspective. Join us this Thursday evening when we talk about this on our Facebook live.

Lois                       

And where have you faced rejection? What are you doing to move through it?

Faith                  

Please share this podcast with someone you know and follow us on all of our social media platforms.

Lois                       

And join us next week for Transition: The Impact of Aging.

Faith                  

Get the latest news on our social media platforms and on our website, and please subscribe.

Lois                       

More to Life with Faith and Lois is a podcast to support, encourage and uplift you.

Faith                  

As you transition through all sorts of change, we want you to know there is more to life.

Lois                       

We’ll be back next week.