If you're anything like me you sometimes catch yourself judging others. Being human we are wired to categorize, label and discern. Sometimes it helps keep us alive (thank you nervous system) and other times it blocks us from connection (hello, walls of fear and separation).
Luckily, through the conscious awareness that separates us from most other species, we can learn to elevate our discernment and simply choose the higher road.
I’ve found that 1 out of 4 things is true for me when I catch myself judging others.
- I’m jealous… this person has something I want
- I’m seeing something that reminds me of myself- Maybe a behavior I used to struggle with myself
- I’m reminded of someone who hurt me in the past
- I’m being confronted with something I don’t understand or I’m simply unfamiliar with
In all of these situations, the common denominator is only me and my unhealed wounds.
Here’s how I handle it when I realize and accept that I’m being judgmental.
- I ask myself if this person has something I want. Is it a yes? Great! Now Iknow my heart’s desire and I can silently thank that person for showing me it’s possible to have it.
- I take the judgment in question, and turn it lovingly upon myself. For example: _____ is so lazy and never cleans up after herself turns into: “I am so lazy and I never clean up after myself”. First I feel in body how it feels to be talked to in that way, and then simply ask myself if it’s true. If somewhere in me there’s a grain of truth, I silently thank the person forreflecting my growth edge to me.
- Next, I’ll ask myself if the person I’m judging reminds me of someone from my past. If I can pinpoint it, I again silently thank the person for giving me the opportunity to transmute, heal and respond differently. I accept that my own memories were unconsciously (and without my permission) casting this person as a villain.
- If this judgment is coming from a mere difference in value or appearance I come back to my breath, and remember that we’re all just walking each other home. There’s probably something I can learn from this person if I am willing to get uncomfortable, curious, open and willing.
The common denominators here are humility, vulnerability, forgiveness and gratitude.
The truth is that we live in a healing world, if we choose. Herbalists and shamans teach that every poisonous plant has an antidote nearby. This shows us that there is always a medicine for what ails us, including our inner wounds: the mental, emotional and spiritual ones. All the judgments, jealousy, arrogance, doubt, shame and fear that is present in all of us.
Often times, the medicine is the person standing right in front of us. The question is whether or not we’re willing to see them that way, and ultimately thank the heavens for the fact that the opportunity to heal is ever-present, from the mirror to the masses!
Can you relate to this? Do you ever find yourself stewing in judgements and not knowing how to get out of the pot? Comment below!