Stop judging

I attended Easter Mass and one sentence from the priest’s sermon struck home:

Stop judging.

It was like seeing an explosion of color before my eyes while I was watching a black and white movie.

What’s your immediate reaction to the word “judge?” My instant reaction is negative: to me, judging implies criticism. It implies “not measuring up” to some criteria.

I considered how I judged something. To judge something meant I had to have an opinion about whatever it was. To have an opinion, I had to compare it to something else. And, since I was judging something, it meant the comparison was usually unfavorable.

I took the priest’s words at face value and added my own build: stop judging and it will eliminate a lot of negative energy. This can only be good.

A couple of days later I was sharing this thought with a person I had just met. She added, “Think of all of the times we judge ourselves, not someone else. Think about what we put ourselves through.” I thought about what she said. How many times have I compared myself—unfavorably—to someone else? Did this make me happy or unhappy? It’s not a trick question: it made me definitely unhappy.

Now, take this thought and apply it to work. Are you ever happy at work when you judge yourself in comparison to others? Do these feelings foster a sense of collaboration or competition?

Stop judging. If I can live by these two simple words at home and at work and I know I will be happier and calmer. Where do I sign?

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