Hey there, you know I hope you got a chance to listen to the podcast last week, but if you didn't, it's a short one, and there is a very short story in that podcast that is a paradigm shifter. Remember, I'm your biggest fan, and one of my primary focuses is to search, find, create, and write the most powerful and influential content ever. My goal is to deliver this to you in the most proactive and effortless way, so whether you go and listen to that episode now, or after you listen to this one, please go, you will not be disappointed.
So here we are, and today I want to talk about judging, and let me just start by saying that I think judging gets a bad rap. When we talk about someone judging, there is usually a negative connotation associated with the word, but I don't believe it needs to be there. Judging is really a neutral word. I can judge compassionately, mercifully, positively, wisely, and logically, and yet whenever we talk about judging, we mostly think about judging prematurely, or getting it wrong, or judging others in a negative light. Yes, it's certainly true that we have a tendency to be premature and incorrect judges, but the purpose of this simple chapter is to open the door for you to judge well and wisely in this life. In fact, I believe that learning to judge accurately and compassionately is one of the great purposes of this life!
We have to judge! The problem is that our brains love to judge quickly. Why does the brain judge so quickly? Remember that the brain is an instrument of survival and protection. Quick judgment allows us to make very quick assessments of present circumstances and people, and then based on general rules from the past, and a quick prediction of the future, the brain sends out the message: danger; you're going to get hurt; watch out; this is going to be trouble; he's lying; she's mad; he's happy; she can't be trusted; he's ugly; she's fat; people are talking bad about you; I'm never going to make it; she's stupid; he's dead wrong, and I'm right. It's one of the brain's primary jobs. What I want you to do is to become a mind-full judge, instead of a brain-full one. Becoming a mind-full judge involves three simple steps:
1. Suspend judgment: Much like the farmer in the previous podcast, recognize that the brain is going to send you a very quick message about what something is or isn't. Your new mind-full ability will allow you to view that assessment not as a mandate or commandment, but instead as something that can be considered. The brain is a gift, and sometimes those quick judgments will save our lives. Other times, based on old inaccurate ideologies, the brain will make our lives an insecure, miserable, and scary place to live. You can become aware of ineffective patterns, and learn to stop them, by creating some space between you and the judgments that arrive at your thoughts and feelings. Answer those thoughts and feelings with a humble maybe… and then move on to step two. It can be a little challenging and overwhelming to question every judgment that the brain makes, and yet what you will find is that a lot of the judgments that your brain will make will just fizzle away as new information manifests itself to you. This will be a new pattern for a lot of you. You are learning a new pattern of interaction with your brain, your thoughts, and feelings. In psychology this is called disentaglement. What that means is that just because you are having a thought, or you are experiencing a feeling, you don't have to become entangled with that thought. When we are entangled with our thoughts and feelings, we identify with them, and accept them as truth, and as an accurate representation of reality. This of course isn't always true, thus this idea of disentangling yourself from your thoughts and feelings, is an important tactic that you can use to consider your judgments, instead of taking them as gospel truth. Learning to disentangle yourself from your thoughts and feelings, or seeing and feeling your judgments at a distance, is a concept that can have a dramatic impact on the quality of your consciousness and your life.
2. Gather information: As we recognize the brain's tendency to make quick assessments and judgments based on old information and to assume that they are the absolute truth about what is happening in the present, and what will happen in the future, we will learn to set that information in a "maybe box," and then begin the process of either gathering more information to make a more accurate and wise assessment, or simply to withhold judgment altogether if there isn't enough information. Remember that our judgments are made through some very thick lenses. Remember that the brain-full perspective is much like the donkey who is walking around with blinders, and whose view of the world is incomplete. Gathering information is the step in which we symbolically and deliberately remove the blinders from our eyes, and expand our perspective. I fully believe that as the larger perspective becomes manifest to us, that we become more compassionate, understanding, loving, and hopeful. Gathering information is a patient process, and in this sense, patience is indeed divine, as we move away from the primitive urges, to the more mind-full and divine perspective. As you gather information, do so humbly. If you are making judgments about what others are thinking and feeling, accept that you are most likely wrong (99% of the time). Use these questions as a guide to help you:
"What am I missing?" or "what else can this mean?"
"What else do I need to know about this situation?"
In a way, you're going to teach your brain a new way to judge and to gather information. Instead of always judging from the perspective of "someone is trying to get me," or "something bad is coming," we are going to teach the brain to judge from the place of "what do I need to know to be helpful and to contribute in a positive way?"
3. Make a wise and helpful judgment: The real goal of this chapter is to learn to judge in an honorable, helpful, wise, and compassionate way. As we fully accept how very difficult it is to make complete and accurate judgments, we will naturally become more patient as we initially suspend our judgment, and then engage in gathering information, so that we can make a more helpful and wiser judgment. Don't judge from a place of "how am I being victimized?" but instead from a place of "how can I be of assistance to self and others?"
As you utilize these tools, you will find that your judgments about yourself and others will become gentler. As you recognize your brain-full judgments as quick, fear-laden, and incomplete assessments, you will open yourself to new revelatory insight about yourself and others. This insight will bring you an internal sense of acceptance and peace. It will move you away from insecurity and toward confidence. It will awaken you out of the "stone-throwing, zombie apocalypse" fear that the brain can originate, and instead, point you toward a more optimistic and empowering perspective. Use these questions to guide you toward making wise and helpful judgments: "What can I do right now that would be helpful?" or "What can I do right now that would improve my connection to others?" They key here, is for you to ensure that your judgments and subsequent actions, are aligned with your outcomes, and your highest values... and in a way, are connected to the principles that will bring you the most enduring joy in this life. Does your judgment help you to solidify relationships? Does is encourage feelings of humility, righteous pride, joy? Does it align with your highest objectives and values? Does it inspire a sense of achievement? Let's slow our roll, and make some beautiful judgments. have a lovely week.
My friends, happy judging, and I'll catch you next week.