Whether we like to admit it or not – we judge people all the time. I know that those of us with good hearts (or even half good hearts) would love to think we don’t but – we do – even if it’s without blatant malice. It could be a fleeting thought that what someone is wearing we consider to be unflattering. That the way someone pronounces a word is not quite right. The old she shouldn’t be eating that…
But there are times when there’s no doubting that our own judgement of others or what we hear and see is more overt. And after having recently seen it in action with my own eyes and ears I’m beginning to think that our fear of being judged, or scrutinised, or criticised, could in fact be one of the major things that hold us back in doing what we truly want to do.
The example I saw was of professional judgement in an environment I felt should have been ‘safe’ for everyone present. I won’t bore you with the full deets but let’s just say it was a classic case of someone with a certain qualification judging someone else who they felt had a lesser qualification. You know the scenario - the type where the doctor looks down upon the nurse or the chef looks down upon the kitchen hand – even though – in so many of these instances – one without the other can be completely lost, or at best, much less effective.
While I could never fully know of course, I think the main reason people judge in this way is because of fear. Fear that they need to cling on to that piece of paper. Or that brand of car. Or that man. Because without such things they don’t know who they really are. Or what they might find. It’s easier to cling and hold to being right or righteous rather than opening up to the possibility that maybe someone else – someone different – has skills and talents and abilities that might inspire or heal or create as effectively or better than them. That they can be amazing too – even with a different qualification.
So I’ve been pondering what the world may be like if we released each other more and judged each other less. A huge challenge I know but could we imagine? If we clung less to being right and righteous and instead allowed others the chance and space and freedom to carve their own path. That we honoured each other for the choices we made instead of thinking it has to be our way. That we acknowledge that difference and diversity is beautiful. That we be someone who lifts up and not looks down.
My gut, inner fairy, deep heart and whatever soul of being inside me says we would have much less fear in the world. Much less fear of being judged and pointed at and told we are wrong or not good enough. And that can only, only be a good thing. A very good thing indeed.