We all know someone who is judgmental.
Elements of what they dislike about a topic, a person, or group of people, are often true about them. Although they demonstrate similar qualities of those they scorn most, they are blind to themselves.
It’s really easy to judge them for being judgmental. But almost immediately, we are now judgmental.
How do we just ignore angry words about an unending list of topics? I’m not suggesting that we sit silent when we hear views that we believe are cruel, uninformed, and just not helpful.
I am also not suggesting that we engage in a debate to change their mind. It’s likely that you’d hear, “I’m not being cruel. I can’t help it that the truth is hard for you to hear.” Save your energy.
This is a post about our internal reactions, but I know there are times when everything in you screams that something has to be said. Here’s a suggestion, “I don’t hear you asking for additional information, but I also didn’t ask to hear your beliefs. I don’t agree with your views.”
They may hesitate next time before vomiting their unsolicited opinions all over you. If they post their views on Facebook like I’m doing, you can unsubscribe to all their posts like I do!
People are most likely to change when they are accepted right where they are at. If it were so easy for them to change they already would have. So would we.
Change happens in response to acceptance. Offer it generously.
People confuse acceptance with tolerance. They are not the same.
Accept means to receive willingly. I can accept someone without agreeing, understanding, or celebrating their behavior. It doesn’t mean being a doormat or trying to ignore the behavior.
Tolerate means to bear or to endure. Tolerance is surely better than intolerance. However, tolerance is not helpful for positive relationships.
Tolerance = Judgment
Acceptance = Love
“I tolerate you” or “I love you” are the options.
If I’m offering someone tolerance, I don’t like to admit it. I prefer to convince myself that I’m offering them love, so I twist it all up with explanations and rationalizations. There we go, now I can feel better about me!
In the end, it’s still tolerance.
Being transparent and accepting myself is the pathway to offering the same to others.
I just need to know what’s going to happen.
You don’t get to know what’s going to happen.
I don’t want them to think I’m a bad person.
You can’t control what they think.
I want to have input about this decision for our future.
You don’t get input into this decision.
I just need them to accept that this is what I want.
You can’t make them accept it.
Learning what we can control and what we can’t control is important. Although it seems simple enough on the surface, it’s not easy.
Once I figure it out in one situation or one season of life, it sneaks up on me again.
The feeling of frustration is the clue. It’s the symptom of a problem.
Whenever that feeling is present, I usually find I’m trying to control something that I can’t.
There’s good news too!
If I’m trying to control something I can’t, there is usually something being missed that I can control. When I discover what I can control, and put my energy there, frustration diminishes.
Hint: I generally find what I can control when I look in the mirror.