Do you want to know who your harshest judge is?
No one in our lives is harsher on our choices, physical appearance, work ethic, morals, etc. than ourselves. Just think back to a time when you messed up somehow. I bet that an incident came to mind almost instantly. While everyone in that situation has probably forgiven you, forgotten about it, or put it behind them, you still feel a little burning shame about it. That’s your judge inside, still punishing you after all these years.
What’s worse is that, even though we are our harshest judge, we are also usually the WORST one to judge ourselves. We lack perspective and are full of emotions and conflicts that impact the way we see things. Often, we judge ourselves for what we THINK is true. But that doesn’t necessarily make it the truth.
So, what’s the difference between judgement and truth? Let’s take a look at some examples.
A Work Conversation
Let’s say that at 5 PM just before you leave work, your manager tells you that they want to see you first thing the next morning. You ask them what it’s about and they say that you’ll find out then.
Right away, your mind probably springs into action, coming up with scenario after scenario. That’s just innate human curiosity. Why do they want to see you? What for? Why so early?
Then, because we always tend to go for the worst case scenarios, your mind might start spinning a terrible story. What if they are going to fire you? Your brain casts back to a few weeks before when you messed up in an unimportant way. At the time, you didn’t think much of it, but what if that was the straw that broke the camel’s back?
As you lie in bed, your brain starts to solidify this theory, and you begin to judge yourself. You can’t believe that you even got this job in the first place. It was such a stupid mistake; you can’t believe you made it. You can’t fall asleep because your inner judge keeps you up, berating you and putting you down.
You go into the office the next morning, knowing with 100% certainty with you’re going to be fired. You walk into the manager’s office, they ask you to sit down… and then request your help putting together a surprise party for a coworker’s birthday.
So, what happened here? Your inner judge spun a worst case scenario out of almost no evidence, fully convincing you that you did something wrong and that your manager was going to fire you. The truth was that your manager wanted you to pick up Janice’s birthday cake. Between the 5 PM the previous day and now, your inner judge berated you and made you feel useless, all based on absolutely nothing.
While this kind of scenario might be a little exaggerated, I’m sure that you’ve experienced something similar in the past.
A Future In-Law?
Here is another example of how your inner judge can get in the way of the truth.
Let’s say that you are meeting your brother’s girlfriend for the first time. The three of you head out to dinner together so you can get to know her a bit better. During the conversation, she makes an off-handed comment about the earrings that you are wearing. There is something about the comment that rubs you the wrong way, but you put it aside and have a perfectly lovely dinner.
Later that night, her comment about your earrings comes back to you. You can’t believe she was that rude. And now that you think about it, there were lots of other things that she did that annoyed you — the way she picked up her fork, the way she occasionally chewed with her mouth open. Without meaning to, you start to judge her. She’s obviously a terrible match for your brother; he could do so much better. By the time you’re in bed, you have a picture in your head of his girlfriend that has almost no barring in reality.
The following week, your brother asks you out for another dinner with her. You dread it. You don’t want to tell your brother what you think of her; that’s she’s secretly a monster. You finally decide to go to the dinner, you sit down with them, and a half-hour into the meal you realize… she’s perfectly nice. Smart. Interesting. And totally into your brother.
Once again, your inner judge went to work, picking apart this woman with the flimsiest of evidence to support your judgement. One thoughtless comment was spun into a negative opinion about this woman. But then the next time you met her, you started to realize that your previous judgement was just flat out wrong.
What Can We Take Away from This?
Now, I am in no way telling you not to trust your gut here. That’s different. Trusting your gut is when your instincts kick in. No, what I am warning you about is something that actually gets in the way of your gut. Without even meaning to, you can create judgements that obscure the truth, leading to misunderstands or even feelings of depression.
How can you learn to tell the difference between judgement and truth? One way is through the Time to Thrive program. Here, you will get to work with a supportive tribe who can offer a sounding board. With their help and mine, you will be able to re-analyze many of your past judgements and possibly even reconsider if that judgement might not have been the truth.
This is not easy work, I’m not going to lie. But it’s the kind of work that needs to be done if you want to thrive! If you’d like to learn more about the CoreBound program, you can visit here! I can’t wait for you to join our tribe!
Download my Unshakable Resilience Workbook. You’ll learn how to transform your life and your relationships and live a more balanced life.