We are human. We breathe. We think. We judge. From the kind of coffee we enjoy to the people we like to spend time with, we have our preferences.
Judgment tends to get a bad rap even though it has an important place in our lives, assisting with choices and decisions that impact our survival and well-being.
Regardless of our opinion about judging, the fact is, if we are interacting with people, we are being judged. And, we have no control over that. People will judge us. Good, bad or otherwise, to be human is to be judged.
That is not the problem. The problem is when we start to let fear of being judged dictate our choices and prevent us from being ourselves, sharing our ideas, and trying new things.
For me, there is something empowering in knowing that no matter how much energy I put into avoiding it, people will still judge me, sometimes positively and sometimes negatively. From here, I have two choices: 1) Stay indoors, stop interacting with the world and let fear of judgment dictate my choices in life, or 2) Be myself, stay true to my values and know that the people who are meant to be in my life will be attracted to that energy.
The bottom line is that not everyone we meet will like us or like all of our ideas or opinions. This does not need to stop us from living our life authentically on our terms. When we try to please everyone, it usually makes us miserable ourselves and still doesn’t guarantee that others will like or respect us.
Several years ago, a former mentor explained it to me this way:
“It is like the Periodic Chart from High School chemistry class. There are some elements that naturally go together and create great outcomes such as Hydrogen and Oxygen (H2O). There are some elements that can co-exist, but remain separate (e.g., oil and water). And then, there are some elements that mix and cause an explosion. It is just the way of nature. You are what you are, so stick with the elements that complement you. You’ll be much happier.”
So, how can we use our energy differently if we let go of the worry of being judged? What could we accomplish without this fear and time-waster holding us back?
If there were no potential for being judged or feeling embarrassed, what dreams would you pursue? What new things would you try? What anxiety could you let go of?
Well then, go cross it off your list. You no longer need to spend time worrying about being judged and can focus your energy on those things you really want to do in life to be happy…on your terms.
Are you judging yourself? You might enjoy the past Blog, “If that Voice in your head were a friend, how long would the friendship last?”.