Judgment is something we all deal with on a daily basis. We judge, we get judged, we judge ourselves, we judge others…but why?
Negative judgments are opinions or conclusions born from fear-based thinking patterns. They come from uncertainty and discomfort. When we don’t like an emotion that a thought about something or someone creates, we use judgments to buffer.
Encountering people or circumstances that cause us to feel threatened or uncomfortable, puts us in a place of fear. Fear causes us to create judgments in order to protect ourselves. Or rather, to protect our Ego.
When we step into a place of judgment, we are allowing the Ego’s fear-based perceptions to become the filters through which we see the world.
You see, in primal days if you didn’t fit in with the group, you weren’t going to last long. Outcast = outnumbered = probably dead.
However, in today’s society of information overload, unrealistic standards set forth by the media and impersonal encounters, judgment no longer serves us in the ways that it used to. Judgment has become less of an instinctual protection mechanism and more of a nasty habit.
We create judgments to avoid being “wrong”. Especially in those situations where we don’t fully understand the circumstances, our beliefs don’t align with those of others, or where we feel our status or value are being put in question.
By judging others, we make them wrong and ourselves right.
By judging ourselves, we make ourselves wrong and others right. It’s funny, really. We're constantly looking for ways not to be wrong… both by standing strong in our beliefs and refusing to change what we believe is right, and in doing everything we can to change in order to fit what others perceive as right.
Judgment stems from fear, and fear is uncertain.
It's easy to judge people on the internet. From the safety of our own homes, we can stalk the highlight reel of their lives and pretend like we actually know them. When we compare our lives to the perfect ones we assume they live, the hard-to-face feelings of fear, insecurity and inadequacy start to creep in. This is when we whip out our good ol’ Shield O’ Judgment and begin looking for things that are “wrong” with them in order to make ourselves feel better.
Judgment also causes us to discriminate. Racism aka xeno- PHOBIA results from one race’s fear-based beliefs that another is dangerous, dirty, corrupt, selfish or in some way a threat to their own. The same idea goes for homophobia, where people of one sexual orientation fear those of another that doesn't align with their belief of what is pure, right and holy.
I used to heavily judge people who consumed alcohol. Growing up, the presence of alcohol usually led to feelings of fear and discomfort. When people around me drank, they often fought, took off, got really sad and angry or acted in ways that confused the hell out of me…so I saw alcohol as something to be feared. As I got older, I swore that I would never drink and I wouldn’t let myself be friends with people who did. As it turns out, my intense judgment towards people who drank had nothing to do with them, and everything to do with my own fearful thoughts of how their drinking might make me feel.
In all reality, other people are just giant mirrors surrounding us. All that we see in them exists in some form within ourselves. The things we judge the most harshly in others are usually the parts of ourselves that we dislike, are afraid to face, or have the hardest time accepting. Likewise, the things we love and admire about others are merely reflections of our own potential and greatness.
We can choose to view others with love and see our similarities, or we can choose to view our differences with fear- creating judgment and separateness.
Want to release judgment?
Choose love over fear.
When we recognize that we are in a place of judgment, we can ask ourselves where we have chosen fear and then make the conscious effort to re-frame our thoughts and choose love instead.
Love is the light that eradicates the darkness cast by fear.
As I say in nearly every post:
Our thoughts are our greatest points of power. We always have the power to change our thoughts…and if we can change our thoughts, we can change our lives.
As always, I'd love to hear from you.
Leave a comment below telling me where judgment is making an appearance in your life, and how you're going to choose love to release it.