DIY Rejection Therapy

Posted by Flux on 

29 January 2024

What’s trending?

Rejection therapy, a self help card game created by Canadian entrepreneur Jason Comely, is trending among young adults, with #rejectiontherapy garnering 95.1M views on TikTok thus far. In the game, each card has a unique suggestion on how you can get rejected by someone in real life. Creators document themselves participating in various challenges where they are likely to get rejected. One asked to take a nap in a mattress store and another asked a barista if she could go behind the bar to make her own drink. It is a form of exposure therapy – a common treatment in psychology to help people confront their fears. The aim is to destigmatize the negative feelings typically associated with rejection. 

Why is it important?

Are these young people taking a proactive approach to their mental wellbeing or are they making light of a serious problem that many people struggle with in an attempt to garner more likes on social media? Whatever the motive, it seems to suggest that many young people are struggling with rejection in their personal and professional lives. It indicates to employers that this generation has a deep seated desire for positive affirmation and a fear of negative feedback, more so perhaps than the generation before them. That this cohort is more open to admitting vulnerabilities than previous ones might also explain the wide uptake of this game. Dr. Elisabeth Morray, a psychologist and VP of clinical operations at Alma, a mental health start-up, says that self-led rejection therapy can be helpful for those who are simply looking to get out of their comfort zones. She cautions though that it could do more harm than good for those who are in need of help from a verified mental health professional. 

What can businesses do about it?

Businesses should motivate their staff by providing positive feedback wherever possible – and not only focus on what they are doing wrong. According to a Gallup report entitled “Empowering Workplace Culture Through Recognition”, employees who receive good recognition are 20 times as likely to be engaged with their work as employees who receive poor or no recognition. When giving positive feedback, be specific about what the employee did well. Provide feedback promptly, ideally soon after the accomplishment or positive behaviour. Your praise should be genuine and heartfelt. Employees can often detect insincere feedback, so it’s essential to mean what you say. Implement reward and incentive programmes, such as bonuses, gift cards, or extra time off, to recognize outstanding performances. Creating a culture of appreciation and recognition in the workplace can have a significant impact on employee satisfaction and retention.

By Faeeza Khan

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Image credit: David Werbrouck 

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