In all my research two particular fears I believe are dominating our generation never came up in a clinical diagnosis. It actually surprised me because out of all the phobias we’ve talked about over the last couple weeks, I probably reference these more than any others.
Fear of Rejection
This is one of the most debilitating, anxiety-ridden fears I encounter. In fact, it has its own dysfunctional psychological expressions. This fear is frequently manifested as a self-fulfilling prophecy. If you deal with this fear pay attention because you may find that you participate in this:
I’m afraid that others will fail to accept me or even flat out reject me. I’ll live as an outcast, unliked, unwanted, and I have enough physical evidence and experience to support this (irrational) claim.
Thus, I can’t possibly be sure people are genuine when they say that they care about me. I have to make sure they’re serious so I test them. I do objectionable things, even push them away to see if they’re willing to fight for me.
People aren’t used to being mistreated (not like I am) so they distance themselves, confused at what I’ve just done and inadvertently end up dismissing and ultimately rejecting me.
See? I was right. Nobody wants me, nobody would fight for me, and the sad thing is, they didn’t even see the real me yet.
The other fear I found sadly missing was:
Fear of being out of control
It has been a startling revelation for me to discover that CONTROL IS MANIFESTED FEAR. I want you to think about it. Control freaks cannot handle, maybe even have these biological, instinctive fight or flight reflexive responses to: not being a decision maker or holding the responsibility for some task or stewardship.
… who are DEFENSIVE about their behavior?
… who go aggressive (or worse passive aggressive) when their TERRITORY is encroached upon?
… who are critical when it is done DIFFERENTLY than they expected or wanted?
So often, this is not about arrogance, this is about fear. You excuse it as preference or even accuse others of being inconsiderate or incompetent, but actually: you’re afraid.
These fears are debilitating friends. They don’t look good on you. And here’s the deal: YOU’RE GOING TO HAVE TO LET THESE GO IF YOU ARE GOING TO EXPERIENCE FREEDOM!
You’re going to have to give up your claim that you are the ONLY advocate for your acceptance. Live accepted by the Lord and let Him provide people to unconditionally accept you…even if you don’t unconditionally accept yourself.
You’re going to have to stop caring so much about things and ask yourself if the anxiety or even anger you feel when you’re out of control is an accurate expression of the person you want to be.
Remember: if you say you can’t help it: YOU’RE PLAYING THE VICTIM CARD. Unless something is legitimately controlling your actions and pulling the puppet strings of your life STAND UP AND TAKE SOME RESPONSIBILITY.
You’re in charge here.
Here’s your vocabulary word of the day:
Anthophobia – fear of flowers