Why rejection at work hurts so much | The Science of Wellbeing at Work #8

Why rejection at work hurts so much | The Science of Wellbeing at Work #8



researchers like Naomi Eisenberger and others who study social rejection have discovered that the brain does not distinguish between a broken heart and a broken bone in other words they activate the same pain pathways in the brain areas such as the anterior insula and the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex and this is reflected beautifully in the metaphors that we use to describe those times when we feel rejected we say things like my heart is aching I felt crushed it felt like a punch in my stomach now all of this makes sense from an evolutionary point of view because we depended on others we depended on our tribes for our survival in hunter-gatherer days and so if there was an instance of being rejected by a tribe that was of immediate danger and our brain had to co-opt the same pathways to indicate either physical injury or this kind of emotional rejection injury so that we could take notice so what does this mean within the context of our modern workplaces it simply means that we need to be vigilant about the times where we might reject others or we might put ourselves at risk for this kind of social rejection so prime areas are the times when we give feedback or when we receive feedback on our performance it might be in groups or out groups that we create at work and we also have to keep in mind that being rejected by a stranger activates a pain pathways in exactly the same way as being rejected by somebody that we know very closely like our friends and family so today think about how you might approach social rejection in a different and wise way you how can you protect yourself and protect others at work so perhaps you know be discriminatory when it comes to scrolling through your social media and comparing yourself and feeling like you live a miserable life when compared to the filter perfect social media lives that others post on screen or maybe there's somebody in the office who's feeling a little left out maybe today is a day where you reach out to them and engage in a friendly conversation I'm per netball and this is the science of well-being at work

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