Whilst sitting at a friend’s house participating in a Skype call with her 19 year old daughter who lives and studies in Auckland, the conversation of her teenage friend came up. “You’ll never believe what Marnie is up to, Mum!” the daughter exclaimed. “She’s 6 months pregnant and huge!”
Marnie and the daughter had been primary school friends and had gone on separate Secondary School journeys that had led them to very different experiences that they have now. They used to be into the same things, barbies, ballet and Saddle Club and now have very different paths to follow. The one in Auckland is following her personal dreams and the other, well. . .
Well what? Perhaps she is following her personal dreams to? In further discussion I learned that Marnie and her boyfriend had been together since they were 14 years old and had always knew they would marry and start a family. But in my head I heard myself say, “the poor baby starting off the hard way” as my mini ‘judgy’ side took over, sizing up their lives by what they were wearing and their bogan haircuts. “That relationship probably won’t last.” I felt sad for them and was judging how hard it was going to be and just as quickly, like a bolt of lightning and another inner voice took over.
BUT THAT IS YOU.
That is me! My parents were 18 and 19 and started their married life in a bungalow followed by a nasty house in Cranbourne, to on top of a laundry and later the family home in Dandenong. We were on the poverty line and their relationship didn’t last. I was that baby and I turned out ok.
In fact I turned out better than ok.
My life is blessed with a family of my own, an education, friends, personal career success, a home, beautiful cars, travel and love. Lots of love. Why would I judge that in other family? Why would I leap to that conclusion so quickly and indeed participate in a conversation that supported this criticism of the young couple and why didn’t I say something to the contrary?
JUDGEMENT. I’M SCARED OF BEING JUDGED.
It is easier to jump on the judgement bandwagon than it is to take a look in your own backyard. To look at what makes you uncomfortable or to look at what you know you are not happy with and what you would want to change. Instead of the unknown it is way easier to talk up your own existence by judging someone else’s (even if altruistically you were elevated as you felt sad for them). No responsibility required there. (Empathy is different but can move to judgement when it forms a conversation that infers status. We are better.)
But here’s the thing. What ever you judge is really just a reflection of you. Ouch. I will say that again, what ever you judge is just a reflection of you. You know when you say to your friend, “she’s such a bitch?” Didn’t you just bitch? The person you are really hurting is yourself because you are letting negativity rule your world. Here’s the thing, what goes around comes around.
If you are judging others chances are you are being judged yourself.
Being ‘judging’ is a way of protecting ourselves against the fears we carry. It is a way of patting ourselves on the back because for some reason our inner child needs the validation and love. If we elevate ourselves above others we get to feel better and more worthy for a period of time. We get others to team up with us to feel support and find some social proof that ‘we are enough’. If you can have a dig at someone else’s car because you believe your car is ‘better’, for a moment you will believe you are better (and be able to stop the internal judgement you’ve been inflicting on yourself for so many years).
“We weren’t born ‘judgy’.”
We learned to use judgement as behaviour to keep us safe and to connect us to our tribe and ensure our survival. Ever seen a pack of teenage girls? Safer to agree with the group and put all of your fears onto someone outside of the tribe to save yourself.
What if you could free yourself from judgment?
Imagine for a moment that you stopped feeling judged by others and you could be happy in your own skin with your own life? How freeing would that be? To not be concerned with how the world perceived you or how you perceived yourself. To stop feeling so pressured to get the latest gadget or to work yourself silly to keep up with everyone else? You may even back yourself so you could actually do what YOU wanted to do not what society has told you what to do.
3 TIPS TO STOP JUDGING TO YOU SET YOURSELF FREE
When you catch yourself being judgemental STOP and…
#1 Remind yourself: People have the right to make their own choices as I have the right to make MY own choice. What they choose is none of my business.
#2 Ask yourself: What is the trigger here? Why am I trying to make myself feel so important? What is my fear?
#3 Tell yourself: I AM ENOUGH. I am doing the best I can with what I know and I don’t need to put you down to make me feel better. I make me feel better.
“What other people think of you is none of your business!”
It is their problem and not yours. You can’t control how other people feel (as much as they can’t control how you feel) and you can’t control what they think. Hurting people hurt other people. Work on you and leave the negativity to others.
How about looking in your own backyard? Appreciating we are all different and all on our own journeys which actually really makes us the same. I still find it amazing that I forgot my life conditions started on the back foot beginning with teenage parents, poverty and later broken family and that I could look at others and feel sad for them or judgemental.
You can change your trajectory, I am living proof. You can also give yourself a head start by resolving your stuff around judging or feeling judged.
Feel enough starting today. Love, L xx
After 20 years Performing Arts Specialist and Educator i have taken my skills in Peak Performance and relationships to a new level. Trained in Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) as a trainer and practioner from the internally renown, ‘The Coaching Institute’ I am excited to let the change work begin! With a tool box full of techniques and processes from my career and education (Bachelor of Education and Graduate Diploma Special Education) I am thrilled to integrate with the wonders of NLP to give you the power to create your compelling future. Are you up for the journey to begin!?
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