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Being judgmental?

Sunday, August 19, 2018

I have been having some interesting conversations lately. The latest came after I overheard a young, pretty, fit, slender woman denigrating an overweight, older gentleman... because “ewww, gross, he sweats so much!” Said in a pseudo-whisper... you know the kind, where she can claim she didn’t intend for him to hear her, but really she did? Grrr, it really made me ticked off, that she made him uncomfortable to try and get fit and obviously he was trying to lose weight as well, and she was being a judgmental twit about how much sweat he was producing? I figured it was a sign of his dedication and determination, and it made me respect his work ethic all the more. Of course, I have seen him around (and her, I had never seen before) so I had some inkling of how far he’s come and how hard he’s worked to get where he’s at at this point. And I remember when I was where he’s at now... Anyways, I was getting all riled up and annoyed over it... and I realized I was being just as judgmental as she was, but in my own way. Making assumptions, assigning values and moral implications when I don’t know her or anything about her. What she said was uncalled for in that particular situation and in that particular manner, but yes, the gentleman in question does sweat a lot. That’s reality. If you took all tone of voice and innuendo away... it would be a simple statement of fact. Her judgmental attitude triggered my own in response... it’s a vicious circle. I have noticed that in other situations as well. One person (and I must admit that sometimes that person is me) makes a judgmental statement or declaration, and the knee jerk reaction is another judgmental response, whether for or against the original statement. That said, one of the things I really like about SparkPeople is the minimal amount of judgement that happens between members. Not that it doesn’t happen, but that it stands out so glaringly when it does. Everything isn’t always hunky dory in spark land, there are frictions (with this many personalities there would almost have to be ), but I rarely see them aired out in the open for the community to pick at and take sides over. I might not agree with a decision you make, but if you researched it and decided it was the best decision for YOU... then I (and I believe most other spark friends) would support the action... I am not sure if I am being naive here, but from what I read in the community feed, in teams, and on the message boards that feels like the truth. Opinions? I know I have an issue with being judgmental over people when I am driving (one of the reasons I don’t like to drive much anymore... the other morons on the road)... but I am trying to mitigate the judgmental attitude in order to reduce my anxiety when I drive. At its heart having a judgmental mien reflects an attitude of superiority... which can be off putting to other people. Being critical and verbalizing that critical thought process tends to drive people away, often the people closest to us. They probably wonder if that person says that about that other person, then what are they saying about me? Similar in effect as gossip... but that’s a whole other topic!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • PATRICIAANN46
    What a wonderful blog!!!!! I was a teacher for several years and quickly learned that the more judgmental a student was, the least amount of self-confidence and self-respect they had for themselves. NONE of us are perfect!!!!! To tell someone else that they should live their life the same way that you live yours in order to be happy is ludicrous. We live our lives in a way that pleases us and our families and hurts no one else. How we choose to live it is up to us, but to tell others that they can't possibly be happy unless they conform to what you believe is the only way is so narrow in scope.

    I give people like this a VERY WIDE BERTH!!!

    Thank You for reminding us to be good human beings..............not judgmental, narrow-minded people who must be very lonely, because who would want to be around them???

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    33 days ago
  • KATIE5668
    Excellent insight and well expressed, one of the best blogs I have read in some time.
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts . Indeed being judgemental is an issue not just for humans, it transcends even into the "animal " world , with those being different, weak or needing being picked on .
    The need for "normal", whatever that is , seems to be a condition that is wide spread.

    33 days ago
  • PELESJEWEL
    emoticon I like this blog because you clealy saw both sides of the coin, where her judgmental vibe, triggered yours. You caught it which is what makes this blog a lesson instead of a gripe.

    emoticon I work at being non-judgmental with myself and others. It's like kindness, I work at being kind daily too!
    33 days ago

    Comment edited on: 8/20/2018 2:43:57 PM
  • FLORIDASUN
    Wow...so many PROFOUND sentences stacked togeher! I loved it, had to reread it, and loved it MORE! Judgement never feels right on the recieving or the offering end. Judgement from one of the particular ladies that had been my BEST frined for some 30 years is exactly why we left the long time dine in/dine out group.


    I always look at people who throw this vibe out as being less than themselves and this is a projection of their own failings on someone else. We never like to face up to our own flaws so casting that insecurity outward instead of inward just seems easier for all.

    And...I myself, am very flawed in this shortcoming myself. That's why your blog is so wonderful Chandra...it makes one think. I love it my friend!

    Hugs!
    34 days ago
  • CHERIRIDDELL
    What a wonderful wise blog.I try hard to curb my judjemental thoughts.We don't know what put people in their current situations .I have enough trouble keeping my own house in order without minding others too.
    34 days ago
  • DIANEDOESSMILES
    Indeed 97.5 people on Sparks if they have any eeek type opinions thankfully keep them to themselves.


    Hey, I KNOW MY WAY WORKS,,,, for me. No 2 bodies are the same.

    Whoever said "Sticks and Stones will break my bones, but names will never hurt me" was a FOOL!! I'd much rather break many bones then the emotional hurt of words. Bones heal much quicker.
    34 days ago
  • VIBRANT4LIFE
    Nicely put and thought provoking.
    34 days ago
  • MNABOY
    I'm old, obese and sweat profusely but when I was young and Army fit I would sweat profusely. My brother is old, Air Force fit and has made fun of me but he passes out when he overheats and I struggle on. It is not pretty but we are not promised beautiful vistas all the time and he and she can turn their head.
    I, too, have a problem with traffic! I am working on ignoring those that have neither care for other people on the same road or the law. It has been a losing battle but I am beginning to make a little headway. Last night I had to wait almost two hours due to a wreck. Helicopter came in, totally dark night out on a rural highway, landed and lifted off about 30 minutes later. Wrecker came by as we waited and there was a motorcycle on the bed of the truck. In the past I would have been fuming that the police didn't direct traffic around the wreck, east bound traffic was coming through for about 40 minutes at first until about 20 minutes before the helicopter appeared, but I was thinking how thankful I was that it wasn't any of my family since they were all out of town.
    34 days ago
  • BONNIEMARGAY
    Goodness, I just faced a flurry of unkind judgmental words yesterday morning, and had to work very hard to not blow it up into a fight.

    I have to imagine that people actually think they are sharing wisdom or news when they spew their judgment on everyone. It is profoundly off-putting, an incredibly effective defense mechanism if you want distance!

    Our brains work with judgment, but our mindful presence can invite us to filter our words through loving kindness.
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    34 days ago
  • ROCKYCPA
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    34 days ago
  • KATRINAKAT23
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    34 days ago
  • BJAEGER307
    emoticon emoticon Being human, it is our tendency to judge, even if we don't think we are. Something to work on for sure, because you never know until you walk in the other person's shoes.
    34 days ago
  • MBPP50
    Very well said. Reminds me of something I heard “check yourself before you wreck yourself.” I catch myself being judgmental and that’s not good for ME. We are human and are imperfect but it is nice to be here in Sparkland where people do not judge us, for the most part. Thanks for a great blog. emoticon
    35 days ago
  • GARDENCHRIS
    a good perspective to have. I work with the public every day, and I am SOOOO ready to retire. they can be so clueless and they bring their own attitudes in that we have to deal with on a daily basis. they wear me out.
    35 days ago
  • READY201811
    Every one has an opinion and each personality is unique. I don’t like to hurt others and very rare make a comment about someone but if I do it is to lift them up not tear them down. I have a sil that honestly has a anxiety attack when she is in a room with a lot of heavy people. I offend her
    35 days ago
  • WATERMELLEN
    I believe based upon what I understand of current neuroscience that our brains are structured in such a way as to form judgements pretty much instantaneously -- the temporal parietal lobe. We had to "judge" whether to run from that sabre tooth tiger pretty quickly!! And I don't think we can excise that judgment function or should.

    Judgement is a good thing. Discernment is a good thing.

    But: what passes through my head doesn't have to come out my mouth: whether in a loud bellow or a whisper "meant to be heard". I don't think you were wrong in "judging" that behaviour to be unkind -- at least in its effect, if not in its intention.
    35 days ago
  • GOLFGMA
    Remembering Mom's advice: If you can't say something nice, don't say ANYTHING. emoticon
    35 days ago
  • CINDY247
    Thanks for sharing We all need these reminders Keep on sparking!
    35 days ago
  • 1CRAZYDOG
    What a much needed, powerful message! There are sooooo many "reasons" that people find to be judgmental and really. . . my underlying thought is ALWAYS, I'm not walking in their shoes, have no idea what's really behind the judgment. That being said, it is NEVER ok, anytime, anywhere to be unkind to one another. That is a given across the board . . . unkindness is never ok.

    Ok, as for sweat, I guess I'd be in deep doo doo w/this young person, too, cuz I work out, I sweat. Sweat is fat crying, baby!
    35 days ago
  • STRONGDAWG
    I agree. SP is a judgement free zone. I know I disagree with choices others makes, but I keep my mouth shut for the most part. If it works for that person, who am I to judge? If there is someone who really irritates me, I just don't engage with them. There will be someone else who can be genuinely supportive; no need for me.
    35 days ago
  • DESIREE672
    I agree this a powerful blog!

    I’m working hard on not saying judgmental things, but I’m trying to be easier on myself when I just think them. I wonder if judging is part of the way our minds work and impossible to stop completely, but I hope stopping saying judgmental things will influence my thinking and make me a kinder person.
    35 days ago
  • MSCHERYL10
    I used to be verbally judgmental and critical but as I've gone through life experiences I have learned to not be that way most of the time, or at least not vocalize it. However, I too am constantly talking to other drivers about what idiots they are
    35 days ago
  • REMCMFA
    Nice. Powerful blog. emoticon
    35 days ago
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