I don’t face a lot of rejection. Not because I’m so wonderful that everybody wants me; I don’t get rejected because I avoid any situation in which I might end up slighted. And we all know how that ends up: instead of going out there and pursuing my deepest desires, I end up walking in increasingly smaller circles, dodging hurt and disappointment by never risking anything new.
I’ve only ever asked one person out on a date; everyone else I’ve ever dated has chosen me. I accepted the first job I was offered after graduating from school, a job I wasn’t sure would be a good fit, just to avoid the stress of interviewing at other places I really liked. I’ve never been brave enough to be a musician: I couldn’t bear the idea of bearing my soul and not being received with adoration. The same goes for writing, though I am trying to address that. I have cultivated a proud and intimidating veneer to make it easy to reject strangers before they can reject me. The thing is, rejection really isn’t that bad. Why have I constructed my whole life around avoiding it? I’m overly invested in my precious self-image. I am not perfect, no way. But some part of me likes to maintain that I am, while the rest of me lazily protects it.
This has to stop. I am missing out. Today I’m going to begin 30 days of rejection. Every day I’ll put my desires out there, my hard work and my fragile self image, to be trampled by the big bad world! I’m strangely exhilarated by the prospect. I’ll start today by pitching an article I wrote to an online publication. Wish me luck, though in this case I don’t know if luck will bring me rejection or acceptance.