How many times today already (or if this is the first thing you have done today, how many times in the first hour of exposure to others), have or will you pass judgement on someone?
Maybe it is the way they look, something they do, something they say, wear or how they behave. Even reading this, there may be judgements arising, and as for interpreting emails and texts, well there is a whole new subject. What about the behaviour of some sectors of society? Homeless people behaving in a way you find incomprehensible - now there is something which is stirring up a lot of 'opinion' in areas of Cornwall at the moment.
Typically, when we judge someone, we are enforcing our opinion of them, and when we do that, we are reinforcing our belief that WE ARE RIGHT. A couple more questions - firstly, what is 'right'? secondly why do we need to be 'right', and finally, what does it do for us?
Well, quite simply, (and my frequent readers will be used to this view now) there is no right or wrong - it is just an opinion - the way you see the world. Yes, we can argue this all day with obscure examples, but ultimately, it is all about perspective, viewpoint, and the story we have experienced up to now. So if you think a white shirt with green buttons may look awful, that's fine, there will be plenty of people who don't, and you may change your mind to think that 'actually, its not that bad after all'. The same follows for peoples behaviour, attitudes, beliefs, maybe there is no right or wrong - just how we see things from our journey in life so far.
On the assumption that judging may not necessarily be the best behaviour to adopt (and even some of the wisest and most mindful thinkers lapse from time to time), why then do we still do it?
Its great being right isn't it? - that takes us right back to the thoughts above, about right and wrong. Being right helps our own self esteem, pulls us up when we are wrong, gives us credibility (in our own minds), and generally makes us feel better and reinforces our opinions. That great phrase ' I told you so' which gets trotted out time and time again, like a parent to a child (and why would we say that anyway) gives us that boost.
So why do we need the boost? Probably, to ease the pain and discomfort of our own anxiety, worries, concerns and jealousy. The easiest thing in the world is to find fault, and as a client of mine once said - "It is easier to edit than create" - he meant this in the graphic design sense, but isn't that such a deep thought the next time someone shows you something they have come up with, thought or built?
So, perhaps, judging helps us to be right, which helps us to put others down (in our minds) to make us feel better about something. That something causes us angst and worry, which leads to detrimental outcomes in our lives. We shut the door, and after the vitriol of being right all day subsides, we spiral back down into our problems, blaming everyone else for that flawed world out there.
It may be money related, it may be related to our jobs or work, maybe our relationships, even short man syndrome. Ultimately, by having an understanding of what it is, usually finds it's way back to a connection with money "I hate my job, it makes me miserable, which affects my relationship, my family, my 20 waking hours a day (because I only sleep for 4 because of the worry), affecting my health, yet I cannot do anything because I cannot see how I can change this financial entrapment".
No financial whiz kid with market breaking funds and complex tax strategies is going to help address that, which is why, at Serenity Financial Planning we take the time to figure out the real issues, to build a proper vision of how the future could look for our clients, taking into account all these issues which many prefer to skirt around because 'people in suits do not talk about that, that's for the woolly jumper brigade'.
Only when we know which direction you genuinely want to be going in life, can we even start to think about the financial strategies and plans or the direction your money should be heading and helping you to achieve - anything else is just guess work or misdirected greed (the pursuit of more for no reason other than to have more). You can read more about that concept in this article here.
Meanwhile, today, check in with yourself, and every time you judge someone, a situation or what ever, ask yourself "why did I judge that" and see where you end up. See if you can find a little Serenity in your day.
By making them wrong for being who they were, I somehow gave myself a temporary boost—a feeling of being okay—because I apparently knew what the correct behavior was to undertake in each of their situations and they didn’t have a clue.