When people make judgements about us, it can feel like they are better than us. That they know best or something we don’t know. The judgements we belief can affect us on a massive scale.
I always remember my Dad saying “When are you going to change”, “Why aren’t you doing xyz” or “You need to pick a job you can do, you’ll never do that”. So after a while I believed those things. At the time I didn’t know how much it was affecting my self-esteem, most people wouldn’t.
What is judgement?
the ability to make considered decisions or come to sensible conclusions.
People make judgements all the time, sometimes unintentionally. It doesn’t change the consequences of that judgement. I suppose you could say some people may feel they have the right to judge, let’s not be naive here, we all judge to a point.
I’m not saying we’re all angels, but what’s the impact of the judgements you’ve heard, and maybe that will make you think about the judgements you make.
What judgements did you hear?
Whether you heard judgements from your parents, caregivers or maybe even teachers and other significant people in your life, the judgements we believe can affect how you feel about yourself.
I’ll give some examples (so yours may not be on here):
- Comments about your appearance (e.g. weight, height, features), religion, sex orientation
- A look that insinuated dissatisfaction and judgement
- Decisions you’ve made are questionned
Hands up, I’ve definitely done some of these things and at times still do, with certain people. Why that is always needs further investigation.
What’s the impact on you?
There are some obvious things that impact us, which stand out in terms of the judgements we believe. Here are some examples:
- Low self-esteem and confidence
- Inability to push yourself out your comfort zone to achieve things (that you’ve been told you can’t)
- Suicidal thoughts
- Mental health issues (anxiety, depression)
- Isolation and Loneliness
- Missed opportunities, promotions at work, social interactions/participation
I find it interesting how much power others can have over us, as a child it’s understandable that we believe what the adults in our life tell us. It’s hard to realise at that time how much it will really impact on your life isn’t it?
You can then see why as an adult any further judgements just play into all the historical judgements you’ve had. Further affecting things like your confidence, self-esteem etc. You can be even more sensitive to it, because it’s been something you’ve experienced for many years prior.
Why the judgement?
Often people judge others because of an insecurity or issue with themselves. If we fear something, we can judge another person or thing because it’s unfamiliar to us. I think that’s understandable, if we look at our environments, messages heard from parents and so on. Then it’s your choice to continue or accept it and look to change it.
You’re responsible for yourself as an adult, you get to reclaim the power back that you’ve lost. Once you realise that the judgements are more about them than you!
Thought for the day:
Consider the judgements you feel you’ve experienced from others, how has that stopped you having, achieving or living your life the way you’d have liked?
Observe/reflect what makes you judge others (go easy on yourself with this, it’s not an excuse to beat yourself up and start criticising yourself). Maybe you can look a little deeper to understand where your judgement comes from.
Are you judging them from lack of knowledge about their situation? Were you not shown empathy and compassion in your life? Is coping with difference a struggle for you? Where does that come from? (if you need support with this I’m here).
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Remember you aren’t alone and you can always join my Change Your Mind Facebook group, where other families of alcoholics support each other with challenges they experience from the past or present. You may have lived with an alcoholic in your past, but it’s still impacting you in the present.
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