Judgment is a tough one because it’s so ingrained in our lives. Early in life, we learn to judge and that judgment can be OK, because it helps us survive. For instance, we are taught to judge scenarios and situations as to whether or not they are safe, We are taught not to speak to strangers. We are told which people to trust and which ones not to. These are all safe judgments and most likely have kept us alive.
It’s the judgment of ourselves and others as individuals that tends to become an issue. It’s easy to judge others, but it’s even easier to judge ourselves. And it’s often that loop of judgment of ourselves that goes unnoticed, stays unchecked and is the most damaging.
So the question then becomes a matter of how do you release the judgment of yourself? And that is through compassion.
It’s easy to fall victim and become prisoner to those negative thoughts of self-judgment. It takes a lot more effort to learn to observe and become aware of them, without further judgment. "Don’t get upset by your negative self-talk, just observe it without judgment. Like birds passing it will fly on by. – Lolita Guarin" We are our own judge, jury and executioner and we know how to justify the guilt and shame as it arises from those judgments.
An important factor is learning to become your own best friend and treating yourself as such. If your best friend came to you hurting, in tears and pain you wouldn’t be mean, call them names, or kick them while they were down. You would lift them up, encourage, support and love them. You would listen and tell them what a fool they were being for thinking such negative thoughts about themselves. We change these formed habits of self judgment by being compassionate towards ourselves.
Looking back on your past from your present isn’t helpful. You have evolved and grown from the person you used to be, so looking back with the skills, experience and knowledge that you have today doesn’t serve you. "Good judgment comes from experience, and experience comes from bad judgment."- Rita Mae Brown You did the best you could with the skills you had, if you had better skills you would have made better decisions. Don’t be so hard on yourself. If you knew better, you would of course – have done better. Affirming this to yourself can help to stop the blame game, release the burden and support you in feeling better about yourself and your past.
"Love is the absence of judgment." – Dalai Lama It takes love to heal judgment, which means in order for you to heal the judgment of yourself you must love yourself. I hope this serves you well on your journey to healing judgment.
Here are some key takeaways for you below.
1. Observe and become aware of your judgments
2. Once you are aware of your judgments be gentle with yourself.
3. Treat yourself like you would your own best friend.
4. Affirm to yourself that you did the best you could with the skills that you had