The following is an excerpt from a samvaad (dialogue) session with Acharya Prashant.
Question: A simple rejection from anybody affects me completely. How to overcome this and what causes this disappointment?
Acharya Prashant (AP): Rejection might be simple, but do you keep it simple? Do you allow it to remain simple?
Do you know what ‘simple’ means?
Simple means, direct. Simple means, it is what it is. I do not add anything to it, I do not distort it, I do not take away anything from it.
Rejection is rejection. But for you is it merely rejection? You make it a part of your self-assessment. It all pertains to the question, ‘Who am I?’ When there is no clarity on that question, then that question clamors to be answered. And it gets answered in very confusing ways, in very distorted ways.
‘Who am I?’
The one, who will be accepted by others.
‘Who am I?’
One, among the others.
Whenever your own self-worth will be dependent on others and hence limited, you will be constantly eager to get approval.
When you want approval and you get rejection, it has a bearing on your very sense of being.
“Others have not rejected something about me, Others have rejected ‘me’ and caused ‘me’ to diminish.”
In some sense, it is a fear of disappearance because all that I am depends so much on others’ approval, so a point will come, when others, if they keep rejecting me, may even cause me to disappear.
Because, ‘Who am I?’, the one who exists as per the others, the one who lives when approved by others. ‘I exist when others approve me’. So what will happen to me if approval changes into rejection? ‘I will cease to exist. I am gone! Where am I?’
And remember it is not about having a low or high self-esteem and it’s not about having a small or large self-worth. Small or large are merely numbers. Low or high are again merely numbers. Every number has a limit. What you call as small, maybe large for somebody else. Every number is fundamentally the same. What is it? A limit. Every number is fundamentally just a limit.