Avoid other people's thought patterns from influencing you. When something really bothers you, it's your own “mirror” and not so much about the other person. Improve your self esteem, sometimes judgement comes from not feeling good about ourselves. Before judging someone else, think about if you’ve probably done the same thing yourself.
We all try our best not to judge, but sometimes it sneaks up on us. So really our mindfulness practice is really the best way to sort of watch ourselves and nip that judgment in the bud.
Imagine that you’re on a subway, and someone comes in and they’re elbowing and they’re all over the place. And you’re like “Ugh, why are they doing that? They’re just so – oblivious!” Alright, that’s our judgment coming up.
But then if you flip it, you know, it could be that they were just diagnosed with some horrible disease. Or, maybe they’re rushing because if they don’t get to work, they’re going to be fired. Bringing in a little bit of mindfulness in that moment can add a whole new perspective and help you step back from that urge to judge.
So, here are 5 tips that I have for you – to help you stop judging.
1. Watch Your Words
Notice how often you go to the things like “I hate…” or “She’s so…” – all those “yum / yucks” that we are so conditioned to use every other moment. Observing yourself is the first big step and then cutting down on the major culprits can naturally follow.
2. Stop Borrowing Thought Patterns
Try to notice how many of those thought patterns are actually your own and how many of them come from maybe your family or from society.
One of the examples I like to give is “I really cannot stand it when people are late”. And in my family, this is my father’s voice, you know. “They’re so rude. How could they keep us waiting? Ugh! It’s just such a lack of respect”. So for the longest time, it would just drive me nuts when someone was late. But when you sort of watch, and go “Oh my god, look at me, I’m being triggered again by something that’s so old. This isn’t my feeling. This is my family’s feeling”. And you’re able to say “Ok, maybe they just got stuck in traffic”.
Once you know that they are not your own, you can take yourself out of those patterns of behavior.
3. Its Not You, Its Me
I want you to think about this when someone really triggers you, when something really really bothers you, usually that’s our own “mirror” and not so much about the other person. So, if you notice that something comes up over and over again, when you tend to get really annoyed with people who are “fill-in-the-blank”, usually, that’s more about yourself.
4. Put Yourself In their Shoes
Consider that when something happens “to you”, usually, that’s coming from a place of evaluating something as being separate. So if I say “Oh my god, I can’t believe that person was so rude,” just imagine, have you ever been rude? You know, typically, we all pretty much do the same types of things. We’re all the same. We all want to be loved. We all want to be accepted. We all want to feel safe. So if you’re judging someone else, try to imagine that you’ve probably done the same thing yourself.
5. Overcome Low Self Esteem
And then lastly, judgement usually comes from not feeling good about ourselves. Usually when we feel inclined to put something or someone else down, it’s usually because deep down, we feel that we have to somehow put ourselves up. So just notice that tendency.