Fear of rejection can show up in all areas of our lives. It may be the fear of not being able to close a business deal, or fear of the person we fancy not accepting a date with us, as much as the fear of our families and friends rejecting us. While fear of rejection is a universal experience, there are some general differences in how it shows up across the elements.
Before we get into these differences, it is important to remember that we all are a combination of all the elements, and that societal influences and life experiences can affect how we respond to fear. Individual traumas and insecurities, as well as our biggest dreams and desires in each moment, can affect which area we most fear rejection in.
That said, here is a list of how fear of rejection might show up in each of the elements:
Electric – They have such a high need for social stimulus, and they move so fast, that they often act before they think. Even if they fear rejection before making a move, their impulsivity and high need for stimulus may initially override the fear, leading regret, embarrassment, and self-judgment to set in after the fact. In some ways, fear of rejection comes more in the form of a hangover for them. They will rarely look shy or afraid on the outside, however electric people who have developed their insecurities and suppressed their nature over a lifetime can certainly experience a constant and pervasive fear of rejection, thereby holding back their electric speed and personality. Likewise, any person who has made a certain outcome extremely important can become paralyzed in the moment, including electric people. When drained, they may get easily distracted from the task at hand as a way of avoiding their fears and other heavier things. When regenerated, even the light-hearted electrics can handle some very serious topics.
Fiery – They want to have a presence, and they often look to have some kind of leadership position, whether that’s socially or professionally. For them, it is vital to advance. Therefore, their fear of rejection is often the fear of public rejection. Loosing face and been ridiculed in public can seem disastrous to them. They may even fear other people being ridiculed or failing, and feel mortified on other people’s behalf. Although all the elements are good at replaying their failures in their heads, fiery people have a special ability when it comes to reliving their shame years beyond the initial event. When very drained and insecure, they may divert their insecurities by pointing out other people’s flaws or defending their own actions excessively. When regenerated, they use their charm and leadership instincts to move things forward, often inspiring teams of people to help out.
Aquatic – For them, creating deep and meaningful bonds with people is among their priorities, so it is common for them to fear losing someone they love, or to fear that people will not love them back. The fear of ending up alone can certainly be present among many aquatic people. Furthermore, the fear of failing their loved ones can also be a challenge for them. In their worst moments, this fear will affect them so deeply that their whole emotional state will be out of whack until they can resolve the problem. Their desperate fear of losing people can also lead them to hold on too tight, thus pushing people away. It is a vicious cycle that many aquatic people find themselves in when they do not know how to regenerate themselves or feel loved when they are alone. When regenerated, their loving nature and special ability to communicate and understand what people are feeling, can help them create meaningful connections and recover from conflicts and rejection.
Earthly – Earthly people don’t want to make other people uncomfortable, nor upset the harmony or cause others distress. Therefore, they might develop a fear of things that are outside their comfort zone. They may avoid choosing things for themselves that they think could negatively impact others. Even taking a few hours of “me time” can be a challenge for earthly people who feel responsible for the wellbeing of the world. Expressing themselves and their wishes might be a challenge especially if they are drained. When drained they will often suffer in silence wishing for others to notice them, while simultaneously making sure not to be noticed lest their discomfort cause others discomfort. When regenerated, their group mentality and inclusive nature can help them find solutions that keep everybody’s happiness in mind.
Airy – Airy people are perhaps the most cautious, as they are very methodical and avoid over-stimulus. Over-stimulus in this case can mean drama, upsets, rejection, and the like – for themselves and for others. Words can hit them hard, and they do not like to push or force their opinions or choices on others. So, when fearing rejection, they are likely to analyze all the ways in which they could possibly avoid rejection, as well as all the ways in which they will probably face rejection anyway. They want to take the calm and gentle route, and might avoid certain topics or wait for the right moment to talk about things – even if the right moment sometimes never comes. This may lead to regret, and wondering when it is “too late” to change things. The more drained they are, the more intensely they go into their head analyzing all the possible scenarios, which further drains them and increases their need for space. Note that sometimes getting it over with is what will give them that sense of space, as pessimistic internal monologues can cause a deep sense of claustrophobia. The more regenerated they are, the more energy they have to speak up and take risks, and they may surprise themselves with how well that can go. After all, they’ve likely already analyzed things enough that they probably do know the best course of action.
Metallic – Metallic people are often afraid of not being exact, precise, or prepared. They are afraid of saying or doing the wrong thing. Embarrassment is an extremely uncomfortable feeling for metallic people, so they will often stop themselves when they are afraid they could be wrong or might embarrass themselves. Seen from the outside, metallic people might seem “uptight” in these scenarios whereas chances are they are just more comfortable not doing certain things. When embarrassment cannot be avoided, a drained metallic person may become snappy in order to deflect their insecurities or reclusive in order to avoid further attention. A regenerated metallic person will have more leeway to laugh things off in the moment, and reserve their embarrassment for later. They also are more likely to weight the possible positive outcomes as greater than the embarrassment risks.
Rejection can be uncomfortable for everyone, yet differences exist in how we each process it, avoid it, and face it.
What are some of the ways you have learned to handle the fear of rejection?