You may or may not know this but I suffer from OCD. Why am I telling you this?
Because I hate odd numbers, yet here I am writing a post with FIVE reasons about judging others.
Doesn’t matter, I wrote another post with a list of 7 and a different one with a list of 5.
There we go. Now we have 12. Seeing as I love patterns, I can write another post of seven.
Let me start by asking you this question first. How many people have you judged this week?
Too many to count? Five to ten? None? (You are a saint!)
We have all judged and been judged. It might be over small things, or over bigger issues. Regardless, we do it. The question is why?
We use other people as mirrors on which to base our essential view of the world and ourselves.
1. The way you feel about yourself
Do you ever judge someone then realise you do the same thing? Yes? This is because often our judgements on others show our weaknesses, soft-spots, and insecurities. Most judgments we make about people are based on lack of information. We make assumptions and judgments based on what we see, not on facts.
2. You do it to make yourself feel better
Admit it. It feels good to judge people at times. I’ll give you an example.
You are out somewhere in public with your toddler who just happens to be on his/her best behaviour. No crying, no tantrums, lots of smile hugs and kisses.
A few meters (or feet) from where you are, you spot a mom with a toddler – hers is screaming and crying, rolling on the floor has juice running down the front of his/ her shirt and you think to yourself, “hmmmmm….I must be doing a GREAT job as a mother. Better than her.” You smile to yourself, then to your little “angel”. Judgement.
3. Mind Programming
I believe you teach your mind what to think and repeat back to you. You tell your mind you are fat, every day that is what you will think to yourself and believe. Tell your mind you are fantastic, and you will believe it (don’t overdo it on this one – for risk of sounding too cocky)!
This might be the biggest reason we judge others by their outer appearance.
We make assumptions about them and about their lives based on what the media has planted into our minds. For example, being thin and beautiful = success. Or affluence = happiness.
Even though in our hearts we know this is untrue, our minds bring us to judge those who do not live up to our ‘standards’.
4. Bonding Through Insecurity
We all feel insecure about something or another. We often discuss people to feel better about ourselves. This is highly noticeable among middle and high school kids. Sadly, some continue this habit into adulthood. When you talk about someone else, most people will willingly join in the conversation to add their two cents. This is where a sense of bonding comes in with judgment.
5. Lack Of Information
Most times, we are judging people we see out in public, at a restaurant, supermarket, drivers on the road,
People we know anything about. We have no insight into why they dress, act, or talk the way they do. All we know is that we see something about them that we consider being ‘wrong’, ‘different’ or ‘inappropriate’ – and in walks in judgement.
What does judgement do to you and others?
- It can make you feel worse about yourself
- It hurts other people
- It can perpetuate stereotypes
- It increases negativity in your heart and in what you put out into the world
Don’t judge choices without understanding the reasons.
What can you do to judge less (we cannot stop this all together)?
When you hear yourself criticizing someone, take a step back and ask yourself, do I see these traits in myself? Do I exhibit the same behaviour? What do I know about this person? Am I being fair?
This is what is often called a pattern interrupt,which is a technique to change a particular thought, behavior or situation.
Remember how it feels to be judged. It doesn’t feel good to judge or be judged so try to remember this the next time you are judging or criticizing someone. Try to open the door of your heart to expand your awareness and self-acceptance.
We all have a story, and you never know when you might find yourself walking in the very shoes of a person you have judged.
Do you find yourself judging others? Or are you constantly being judged by family, friends, co-workers?
Share your experiences with me below.