Have you ever noticed that when you are judgemental towards someone else that many times you are judging the very things that you don’t like about yourself? It’s taken me my entire life to come upon that realization, but the results have been life-changing……
The last several years have been heavily personal development for me. I’m not sure if it’s because I was trying to find out who I was after the loss of my 1st husband or if it was because it just comes with age, but in all my floundering, I’ve learned a ton about myself. A lot that I like and a lot that I don’t.
I have always considered myself fairly easy to get along with. I have my moments, but who doesn’t? Over the last 10ish years, I have consistently improved in the areas of taming my tongue, speaking words of life, and just overall being easier to be around. I am not naturally optimistic, so I also have put a lot of work into being happy where I am with what I have, practicing gratitude in all situations, and always looking for the good in every situation.
As I started to intentionally change my thought patterns so that they were more positive, I noticed how much negative came out of my mouth. Even as much as I had improved, it seemed that I always had something to say about others. Even if I didn’t say it out loud to others, which I did too much, I thought it….and that is no better.
Because I was paying attention to it, it started to become clear to me that the things I criticized people about were things that I really didn’t like about myself.
- She’s too big to dress that way – I was unhappy with my body
- She’s so annoying acting crazy with her kids – I wish I was a fun mom
- She’s way too ooey-gooey with her posts about her husband – I wish my husband was more romantic
- She’s always showing off her amazing vacations, no one cares – I wish I could see the world
- No one cares what you had to eat today – I wish I liked to cook and wasn’t relying on cereal for my kids’ dinner again
As I started to realize that my criticizing and judgments were based out of my own hurt and unhappiness, things started to change. My compassion meter started to skyrocket. I was finally understanding that if I was unhappy and judging others, then anyone else acting ugly was probably doing it out of their own hurts as well.
That realization was a life-changer.
SO WHAT DID I DO ABOUT IT?
I started to ask the questions:
What has happened to them to make them feel that they need to act this way?
Am I just feeling this way because I’m jealous of what they have, what they are doing, etc?
If someone goes speeding by me, I hope that they aren’t trying to get to the hospital before a loved one dies (this was me at one point).
If someone says something hateful to me, I stop to think it over. Is it true? Do I need to course correct or are they just speaking out because they are hurting about something?
If one of my children is acting out of character is it because they are being defiant or is it because they ate something they shouldn’t have, didn’t get enough sleep, or something is bothering them that they don’t know how to process?
If my husband isn’t “textbook” romantic, does he do different things that show his love for me? Call me at lunch just to check-in, take out the trash, snuggle me when I’m cold?
I’ve also noticed that giving praise when I’m jealous of someone helps me to settle back into contentment with what I have, am, or do.
If someone is rocking shorts that you feel are too short, give her applause for being comfortable in her own skin.
If someone is posting their homemade baby food, congratulate her for being such a good mom.
If you see someone that is *annoyingly* energetic, compliment them for being inspiring or motivating.
I think when we aren’t living the life we were put here to live, we tend to be overly critical and also overly judgmental of others around us. If you aren’t happy in your life, you will look for reasons to continue to be miserable. You will look for others to blame for your unhappiness.
As you start to find your purpose and your own contentment, you will start to notice how you react to others. You will start to have compassion for those that are hurting and acting out. You will start to look for the best in all situations. You will start to realize that instead of tearing someone else down for doing something that you don’t jive with, you can just move on…..some people are your people and some aren’t…..and that is ok! You will also realize when you are acting out of jealousy because someone else is doing something that you haven’t yet taken action on and you are mad at yourself about it.
One of the things we learned in Revelation Wellness training was “You do you, Boo”. Just because you don’t connect with someone doesn’t give you the go-ahead to mock what they are doing. Let them do them and you do you.
We are all created unique and special. Sometimes life gets in the way of that and we act out in ways we normally wouldn’t. Be compassionate, you don’t know what someone else is going through (or has gone through in the past). Find your happiness and contentment and focus on that while moving forward in becoming who you were put on this earth to be. If you feel yourself starting to judge someone else’s actions, always ask yourself…..
- Am I judging them because I struggle with something that they don’t seem to have an issue with?
- Am I willing to love them and give them grace because I don’t know what they are dealing with in their life?
I’m not sure which podcast I heard this quote in, but I loved it when I heard it and I believe it to be 100% true!
There is almost no one in this world that you couldn’t love if you knew their story.
Please like and share using the buttons below!
Want to read articles like this hot off the press?
Join my mailing list and receive posts delivered straight to your inbox!