So...wondering why we judge?
When we judge others, we try to place them below ourselves. We seek arguments why we are better than others. Why the heck would we try to do that?? Most likely because we are feeling insecure. We don't like ourselves well enough at that moment and we feel we must be negative about someone else in order to make ourselves feel better. And, in reality how do you feel, this way of acting, is truly making us feel?
What we do when we are judging others is making a ranking. Everyone we meet is put on a scale, where we are somewhere in the middle, above it or below it, depending on our self-regard at the time. Some people, who we give a higher rank than us on our scale, might make us feel insecure and if we choose to start judging them on something, we allow our minds to think "at least they have a negative label on their coat". And, by doing that, our judgments will put them even lower, creating an artificial feeling of being better for us.
Look into the mirror
"When you point your finger at someone, there are always three fingers pointing back at you". We judge people because we are afraid of looking at a part of ourselves we don't like. Each and every person acts like a mirror for us. When we are happy, we receive smiles each day.
And when we don't feel well, we tend to see a lot of grumpy faces.
Curious how that works for judging?
We judge people because they have the courage to do things we are afraid or show they are comfortable about things that we dislike in ourselves.
We may judge a woman wearing a tight shirt, that emphasizes her bosom for dressing cheap, when we are feeling jealous of her physique or her courage to dress as she pleases. We may judge a working mom for not staying home with her kids when we chose to be a stay-at-home mom, who always dreamt of a career and gave it up when she became pregnant. We may judge a couple kissing openly in the street because we dream of being in love but are too afraid to open our heart for someone.
We share our judgments with others and look for support, gossiping around. And we look for others who share our negative feelings, to create the feeling of being with a group with shared ideas. The group doesn't take time to reflect its own emotions, and is quick to point to others with strong, negative opinions. By sharing negative feelings, the load of the emotions grows. By sharing negativity, the amount of negativity increases. We will never truly feel good about ourselves by being negative about someone else. Negativity always attracts negativity. Even if the other person doesn't accompany us in our small talk, this other person might start to dislike us because we are so judging and negative about others!
Wondering what to do if you catch yourself judging someone?
- First and foremost: Dare to be aware of your judgments. Even though you might not want to admit or look at why you are being judgmental, I challenge you to look at this as a learning opportunity and embrace yourself for daring to be aware of your judgments.
- Second: Wonder why you feel the need to judge. Ask yourself; "What does this person you are judging show you about yourself?" and "What is this person capable of that still frightens you?"
- Third: Be grateful for this process. You became aware of something that is still holding you back. And now that you are aware of it, you can choose to change (or not).
Curious what to do if you are being judged?
It's true, most people judge. Especially when we do things that are slightly dif
ferent from mainstream, we are a welcome target of judgments. So what is the best way to respond when you feel people are judging you?
Be aware that their judgments say little about who you are, and all about themselves. Their judgments express their fears. Are you blamed for dancing weird? I'm guessing they wish they had the courage to dance like you do. What if you were to honor their judgments? And say to yourself, "I am doing something courageous!" Maybe you could even smile at the person judging you and/or give them a hug. This way you are letting them know there is no reason to be afraid of you. That you might lead a life different than theirs, and that you are willing to share your experiences and create a real moment of growth and thankfulness for both of you.
- Do you judge people?
- Do you see a difference when you are feeling happy?
- How does judging others make you feel?
- How does it feel when you are aware that others are judging you?