5 Ways to Stop Yourself from Criticizing and Judging Others

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Very few people can honestly say they don’t judge or criticize others. I can’t. Can you? In fact, many of us see things in black and white (whether we are aware of it or not), righteously and firmly planted in the belief that we are right, and others are wrong…or assuming that we know what other people’s motives are, but really, in essence, having no idea. When we judge people or events, we create constricting energy that boxes up our own vibration, and even holds back the progress of our collective consciousness. Think about it – do you ever really feel good when you’re judging or criticizing someone else? No. It puts you in an ugly, closed-off space. And in order to thrive and grow, you need to feel good, and to be in a strong, positive vibration. When you judge someone for being an ass, you’re the ass, too – because you’re all caught up in criticizing and judging them. And that’s not cool.

It’s not always easy to switch over to non-critical thoughts, though – so here are 5 ways to suspend judgement and get into the zone of all-for-one goodness:

1. Just Knock it Off.
Easier said than done, right? But honestly, you’ve gotta stop at some point. Try this: the minute you start thinking negatively about someone, stop yourself mid-thought and ask yourself why you’re going there, and correct the action while it’s happening. Either pull yourself into the present moment and train your brain to think about and focus on something else, or, if you have the time, take a moment to write down what you think about that person;  if you’re angry, get it out! And then crumple up the piece of paper, throw it out, and be done with it (until the next critical thought comes up – and when it does, and it will, do this again, and again, and again, until you finally end the cycle.).
2. Walk in Their Shoes
Don’t think for a moment that you can know what ANYONE’S life is like until you walk in their shoes. You have no idea – you really, really have no idea – what their experience is. Once you can accept that, you can disconnect, unplug, and pull your vibration away from trying to figure out what you think is so wrong about that person’s beliefs or actions. Maybe, at some point or another, you’ll experience something that the person you’re judging is experiencing. Who’s to say you’ll react any better than they did, or do? You can’t know their journey until you take it yourself.
3. Don’t Assume ANYTHING.
Remember that to assume makes an ASS out of YOU and ME. Don’t assume anything. You could be seriously wrong.
4. Create a loving heart. 
Work on opening yourself up to being a lover, not a hater. Start by recognizing the people and animals you love easily, and allow your love to grow. Smile more. Imagine the asshole honking at you in traffic is your son or grandson, and send him love. Recognize that the telemarketer is just doing her job, and send her love. Each morning, commit to having a loving heart, and to create a loving world. It won’t work overnight, but in time, you will cultivate a loving vibration that is much higher spiritually than criticism or judgement.
5. Know that it’s not about you.
A huge reason why we’re so critical and judgmental is that we act from our egos, taking life ever-so-personally. But no matter who you feel critical of – parents, children, friends, co-workers, bad doctors or dentists – pull yourself out of the interaction and truly realize that it’s not about you. People will act the way they’re going to act, regardless of whether you’re there or not. And you can’t change that.
It takes a ton of effort to turn off criticism and judgement in a world that embraces it so wholeheartedly (just turn on the TV or pick up a tabloid), but once you begin to practice suspending these thoughts and vibrations, you’ll realize that you actually feel better, and that it’s a lighter way of being. I’m trying to adjust my thoughts and beliefs, and I feel happier when I’m more understanding about people and less huffy-puffy, in a tizzy, or mad at them for whatever they’re doing that I perceive is uncool. When you’re truly un-judgemental, your energy flows, and your vibration lightens up. Change starts with one person, and you, too, can be an influencer in this new thought movement, making a difference that contributes to elevating the vibration of our entire planetary consciousness. I’d say that’s worth trying for.
Is there a person or situation that gets you all judge-y and critical? I want to hear your experiences, and see if these techniques will help – so please leave a comment below.

Say Readers...

  • Marketing Expertise   

    This is so AWESOME — totally insightful and spot on — great job!

    Points 2 & 3 are very closely related and both really resonate with me.

    Many people make ASS-umptions about others based solely on a lack of perspective.

    As individuals, we are the sum of our experiences — our worries and fears, our successes and triumphs, our stumbles and failures — and this vast breadth of experience shapes our perspective and motivates our actions.

    The way I act in a given situation, good or bad, may seem total off-base or completely crazy to someone else. But without the benefit of my "unique experiences," their judgement is fundamentally flawed.

    Expressions like: "live and let live," and "I gotta be me," sound cliched, but they've become cliches because of the incredibly important sentiments they express.

    Choosing to be a total bohemian with no concrete career goals may seem crazy to a high-powered corporate lawyer, and vice versa, but neither party has the benefit of the others experience.

  • Krishanti   

    Thank you. I totally agree, without the benefit of your "unique experiences," nobody can truly know or understand where you're coming from.
    Thank you for reading, and for your thoughtful input. I love your bohemian – lawyer comparison, too, it's totally true.

  • Amie Mangum   

    I kind of feel like its easier to disconnect from strangers' business. Its family that I get all in knots about. There's so much history there, and hurtful behaviors that can be traced back all throughout that history. What I try to remember is that "only those who are hurting hurt others". And I expanded on that idea; "only those who are annoyed annoy others", "only those who are drained drain others", "only those who are controlled control others", etc. And where total detachment and judgeless-ness are still quite difficult, compassion becomes possible. They are projecting onto me what they are having imposed upon them. This not only helps me to be set a little freer from my own criticism of the person, but also helps me prevent my own perpetuation of the same cycle. We are all guilty of it. If only the hurt hurt others, am I'm hurting, then chances are I'm likely to hurt someone else completely unawares. Compassion makes it easier to "turn it over" to the Divine for healing, and to bring my own behavior into better focus. We are all mirrors of and for one another. BTW-I love your site!!

  • Krishanti   

    I totally agree, Amie, it is a lot easier to disconnect from strangers' business! You are so right, we totally ARE all mirrors of and for one another, and compassion is the key to healing and forgiveness. Thank you so much for your feedback and insight!!

  • Anonymous   

    Hi Krishanti It is 2015 and I don't see anyone else's comments….A daughter and I go back and forth with hurtful observations and barbs…We both are suffering from eachother. We are older now.. I am a senior and she is in her 50's …we've had a real rocky road with drugs, alcohol, street life and such in the past that is all over now. I am going to give what you suggest a shot. I loved the comment that only those who are annoyed annoy others, etc. I am going to use that on myself….
    God is the transformer and the transformation of us all reflect our own divinity…our goal.

    Lots of love and joy to you

    Jayne

  • Krishanti   

    Hi Jayne, thanks for your comment! Here's to transformation. If we all just try and improve ourselves a little, the world world will become a happier place.