Josh Sway
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/ The 3 Phases of the Fear of Rejection

Fear of rejection is about much more than approaching women.


You and I both suffer from it from time to time; the dreaded fear of rejection. You know the feeling. You simply can’t bear the thought of approaching the smoking hot chick at the other end of the bar, not because you are afraid of getting blown out, of getting rejected. Your fear runs deeper. You are afraid you will stumble on your words, make a mistake, you are afraid the rejection will be due to YOU. You don’t want to lose sleep, day and night over what could have been had you just said something a little different, made better eye contact, or been more confident. You don’t want your ego shattered. You don’t want to start thinking, “am I ugly?”, “do I dress poorly?”, or “how will I ever get women?” The whole scenario just isn’t worth dealing with it, so you just sit back and keeping talking to your friends while finishing up your beer.

The above is called approach anxiety. It is very common. But it is also only one of three phases of the Fear of Rejection. The Fear of rejection is much more complex than approach anxiety alone and manifests itself in several other ways, many of which I think are MUCH MORE DEVASTATING to success with women than approach anxiety. Approach anxiety is easy to combat; approach, approach, approach until you learn that everyone gets rejected and that being rejected is no big deal.

Have you ever texted (and/or messaged if you do online dating) a woman with the intent of meeting up only for your conversation to devolve into five, ten, or even twenty back and forth messages without a potential in person meeting coming up even once? You probably think you are doing it on purpose. You probably think you are “building attraction”, getting her “sexually aroused”, or “waiting for a smooth transition into a date”. What is actually happening is something entirely different:  You are suffering from phase two of the fear of rejection.

Phase two fear or rejection is DEVASTATING due to its insidious nature. Most of the time, you don’t even notice that all the back and forth communication with a woman you are just trying to ask out is fear or rejection in action. You actually think you are accomplishing something with each message you send! You are actually accomplishing something, LOWERING YOUR CHANCES.

The second your text appears on a woman’s phone or your message appears in her online dating inbox, she knows you are interested in meeting her, she knows you want her. The second she responds, you know she is at least open to the idea. And from there, every message that doesn’t get you closer to asking her out is a direct hit to your confidence, and women LOVE confidence.

Phase two fear of rejection is a large part of why the messaging advice in my e-book Sway Seduction is structured like it is; to make sure that you do not fall into the vicious circle of message hell that leads to no meetings, and definitely no sex or relationships.

The final phase of the fear of rejection is in the physical escalation phase. Phase three fear of rejection is a complex issue. In the bedroom, some apprehension is often warranted. The most important things in the bedroom are to always be sure the woman is consenting, comfortable, and respected. While it is true many women like a confident and even aggressive man; it should NEVER come at the cost of consent, comfort, and respect.

However, most of the time, fear or rejection w/respect to physical escalation comes much before the bedroom. Phase three fear of rejection happens when the woman is ready to ramp up the intimacy level and for some inexplicable reason you are afraid to make the move. Women have been socially conditioned to repress their sexual desires so you are unlikely to get a straightforward invitation to physically escalate. With experience, in particular one on one dating experience, you will learn how to spot a woman’s subtle indications of interest. However, if you fear being rejected, if you fear the awkward moment where you misread her desire for a kiss and get turned down, for example, all the knowledge in the world is useless.

Another common example is settling for a single when you were given a home run pitch. This is simply another form of phase three rejection. You think you might have a chance to get her back to your place, but instead you just settle for a kiss and try to justify to yourself that you succeeded. What really happened was a phase three fear or rejection. Fixing it is easy, just ask her back. If she likes you, she will not think any differently of you whether you do or you don’t even if she isn’t ready to get more intimate that moment.

There are many ways to combat the fear of rejection, but the first step as actually knowing that it is more than just approach anxiety. Make sure you identify and tackle all three phases of the fear of rejection. Approaching many women is great, but until you overcome phase two and three you will never reach your ultimate potential with women.





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