What Judging Others Really Means – This May Surprise You
Most of us don't realize how often we may judge others or even ourselves. We gossip about our ex's wife, our boss's new glasses, we may even snub our colleague's or neighbors parenting skills – the list continues.
A few years ago – my coach asked me to take a personal assessment on how much I judged. This was about others and it was about myself. I learned alot, including why I.
We often compare ourselves to the people around us. We often judge others in areas where we are most lacking.
When I worked in corporate several years ago, there was a time that I worried if I was cut out to manage that promotion of handling an international client portfolio and 50 employees (which was my career prior to staring my own business). On one occasion, I recall a colleague being late for a new client welcome meeting, I caught myself rolling my eyes and had no compassion to extend. Why? Well, what is discovered is …..because I was still beating myself up for flaking on a work related event, let me explain…..
What I realized later is, in these moments we may unconsciously look for ways to make ourselves feel better by telling ourselves we are at least better than that!
We may do this in our personal relationships and social relationships too.
When we become aware of when and why we judge others
we open up a very self-empowering opportunity for ourselves
Judgment kills compassion and compassion is what fuels trust and intimacy. It starts with showing compassion for ourselves. Only when we feel comfortable with our own imperfections, will we stop feeling the need to criticize others.
Let's take this one step further. We are often triggered by others when we have a common trait with them. People whom we engage in life with on a regular basis can be mirrors to us and reflecting back our own qualities traits, etc..the pretty or not so pretty. If you find yourself often triggered (annoyed, frustrated, judgmental) about someone – look at what about them triggers you. Is there something within you that is similar? This can be a huge opportunity for personal growth.
Interested to take the same challenge as I did? Heres a couple of suggestions for the next 2 weeks :
Week 1. Becoming more aware. Pay attention to what you are thinking, feeling and saying – and why. It might seem odd initially but the next time you are being l judgmental, ask yourself – What's really going on here?
(Note: judgment is not merely thinking negatively on someone or yourself but it can be something good as well. It is an opinion that you are taking note of)
I kept little sticky notes around to remind to be more aware of my judgments. No one else knew what the sticky notes meant, but I did. They just said – WHY?
Also, I kept a little notebook on my desk and when I caught myself judging I wrote it down and reflected on it later. It was extremely valuable to see and learn more about myself. I highly recommend this.
Week 2. Declare a stop judgment week. It's quite refreshing when you realize the depth of a real conversation you can have with another, when you are not judging them or yourself. This week is also implementing what you may want to course correct with your own behaviors – a little at a time – goes along way. That's what I did. It's been life changing and made me a better person. Better with others and with myself!
Women's Success Catalyst