By Paula Bianchi –
Judging people has become an American pass time since our easy access to millions of people through the internet. With the gift of anonymity, some people are going out of their way to humiliate, demean, and bully others. Why? Because, they feel they have a right to. The act of judging has always been used as a weapon to hurt others, only, now it’s amplified.
We judge people for: their beliefs, interests, intentions, political and religious affiliations, who they choose to love or marry, past deeds, how they treat others and animals. People are judged for how they dress, wear their hair, makeup, too fat, too skinny, too short, too tall, their skin color, how they talk or act or look. The list goes on and on.
Having to endure being judged where there’s no merit, can really screw with our inner dialog, and we have to decide if we’re going to place any credence in their judgmental views. This can be very challenging to overcome.
Turn on any media outlet, and what do you see? A blow by blow of passing judgement. It’s become a play by play event just like watching sports, and we keep tuning in. Now, people can be judged for the wrong reasons, but they can also be judged for the right ones.
It’s just another example of ying and yang. There’s always good and bad in everything while we’re here on Earth, and our free will leaves it up to us to choose which one we’re going to emulate.
All of us judge people as we go about our daily lives. We judge them in their cars, at the store, in a movie theater, in the park, on vacation, just about any place where you stand in line. The first thing we notice is usually something we don’t like about them. For many, they see the negatives first, while a few of us focus on, and try to see, something positive.
Each day, we’re presented with many opportunities to not judge people harshly, but we fall short because we always seem to focus on what we don’t like about someone. As we buy our groceries or go to the doctor’s office, we see people all around us. We look at them and judge them by their looks, mannerisms, and actions.
Once I had this epiphany, I made a conscious choice to look for something that I do like about the people around me. I thought this would be easy, but there have been a few occasions where I really had to press myself to find something I could like. I quickly learned what I was feeling towards these few people had more to do with their energy and mine rubbing against each other.
There are moments in our lives when we just dislike someone for no apparent reason. It’s really hard when we feel it more than the other people around us. To stand back and let someone you love get involved with a person we can see is bad news, can be heartbreaking.
When this happens in our lives, we have to learn to step back and let things play out as they will even when we know it’s going to end badly. The reason for this is because it’s not our lesson to learn. Should we voice our concerns? Of course, but don’t become a broken record.
An important adage we should continue to stick with is: “You can’t judge a book by it’s cover.” People make assumptions all the time based on looks, and in most of these cases, they’re wrong.
Take me for example. I was very shy around everyone except those who were closest to me. While I was waiting in line to sign my kids up for swimming lessons one year, I ran into someone who recognized me from Jr. High. (I didn’t recognize her though.) After chatting for a while, she remarked, “You’re nothing like I thought you were in school.”
I asked her what she meant, and she proceeded to tell me how everyone thought I was a stuck-up bitch, and I seemed a bit on the tough side because of who I hung out with. I found this to be so amusing. That was actually the total opposite of me.
The truth of the matter was, I was scared shitless to start Jr. High because one of my grade school friends made it perfectly clear that she was going to have my ass kicked on the first day of school. On that day, I was very fortunate to become friends with two girls who weren’t afraid to fight, and they vowed to protect me. Because of them, I never got my ass kicked, but my association with them, and the way I dressed, I liked to wear a boy’s jacket with jeans and a knitted beanie, labeled me as a tough bitch.
Stuff like that happens all the time in our daily lives. When we go to court, our lawyer tells us how to dress and act, so we can give a good impression for the judge and jury. In their profession, they understand their client is going to be judged by his/her appearance the moment they walk into the courtroom.
Once somebody has judged someone, they in turn try to get others to agree with them and take their side. This is how some family arguments start, or it causes bad feelings between friends. We see this all the time on social media. The effect of people choosing sides can build and build until it takes on a life of its own. Being too quick to judge, can even be used as a prelude to war.
The act of judging people presents itself on many levels. From the mundane and superficial, to the serious and threatening, we have to decide how we’re going to judge it. To pass a judgement based on a narrative to manipulate a consensus, should always be brought to light. Judge not lest ye be judged.
In my next mind games article, I’ll talk about relationships. Thanks for reading. Bye for now.