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Woman asks how to learn to approach gentlemen without fear of rejection

06 Jun
A 47 year old woman with grown kids hasn’t dated since she was divorced 13 years ago and wants to know how she can learn to approach gentlemen without fear of rejection
Question: How can a mature woman (47) learn to approach gentlemen and not fear rejection? I haven''t dated since I was divorced 13 years ago. I tell myself that I don''t care but I know something is missing in my life. Both of my children are grown and I have a lot of time on my hands!!!

Dear Candace,
I’m sure that many months of sitting at mindfulness meditation, watching your feelings and breathing them out, would eventually bring you the detachment you seek here, so that you would be able to reduce or eliminate your fear of rejection, so that’s definitely one approach, albeit a lengthy one.

Or you could listen to our Self-Confidence imagery repeatedly, until you felt the extra self-assurance it conveys.. a little less lengthy.

You could also give yourself some positive self-talk, reminding yourself that you are a good and appealing person with much to offer anyone, man or woman, in friendship or romance.

You could also lower the stakes in your own head, so that each potential encounter isn’t about living happily ever after with your True Love, but instead just saying hello to a potentially pleasant companion for the next few minutes. Act as if the man were a woman, and behave accordingly - naturally and unselfconsciously.

No matter what technique you use, I would suggest you learn to just make friends with your fear and proceed regardless. Fear is just a feeling. It won’t kill you and it certainly doesn’t necessarily mean anything, pro or con, about the situation, other than that you’re afraid. That’s why I’m so fond of the title of that book,"Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway". Don’t wait for the fear to be completely gone in order to act. You may just be a shy person who will always have some element of fear in a social situation. Please don’t let that stop you. And, in the meantime, put yourself in social situations that have natural appeal and interest to you, so it’s not only about "meeting a guy". That will help too.

Good luck!

Belleruth Naparstek

Psychotherapist, author and guided imagery pioneer Belleruth Naparstek is the creator of the popular Health Journeys guided imagery audio series. Her latest book on imagery and posttraumatic stress, Invisible Heroes: Survivors of Trauma and How They Heal (Bantam Dell), won the Spirituality & Health Top 50 Books Award