Despite our best intentions, we judge too much. We are quick to jump into conclusions about people and things. All this is done just by external observation. We sometimes stand in judgment of others with positive or non-harming intentions while more often than not, it comes tagged with a darker intent.

The dictionary definition of the word “judge” means to form or give an opinion or conclusion about something or someone after thinking carefully about all the information you know about them. I don't think we fall accurately into this description at all.

I believe we judge because our minds want to simplify things. It is so much easier to judge others based on our immediate observations. We narrate and share stories about others, usually with insufficient facts. Without self-awareness, jumping to conclusions becomes our default mode.


Regardless of the reason, focusing on the negative in someone only breeds negativity in us. What we say about others says a lot about ourselves. Our judgments reveal our soft-spots, our insecurities and our weaknesses. We harshly judge others because we do the same to ourselves.

We tend to notice things in other people because we have either been in similar situations, or we are insecure about certain qualities they have that we recognize in us. When we judge, we are implying certain conclusions about ourselves.

Harsh judgments are often tailored to affirm an individual's self-image. It is so ingrained in us that we don’t tend to notice.

The ability to observe without evaluating is the highest form of intelligence.

– Jiddu Krishnamurti


I judge. No saint here! It's the one thing I do more often than I should. Maybe it isn’t even possible to stop judging others because of the way we’re wired as human beings. But we certainly do have control. There is almost always something positive you can divert your attention to. Since people are creatures of habit, we become accustomed to routines and change becomes difficult. Get started with mindfulness. Think about what you are thinking about.

Research shows that people tend to overestimate personality and underestimate situational factors when making attributions. This is especially true with people we do not know well.

When we make attributions for people we know and care about, this tendency flips. Ironically, the better we know the individual, the more flexible and less judgmental we are of their behavior. Most judgments about people are based on incomplete information.


Our brains are wired to make automatic judgments about others’ behaviors so that we can move through the world without spending too much time or energy on understanding everything we see. We do not always have the time to get to know another’s situation, so making personality judgments tends to be quicker and more automatic.

Judging others is easy and convenient, and in some cases, it can even feel good to do so. Every time we judge, we express the lack of love we have for ourselves and for life. On the other hand, being curious requires maturity, emotional intelligence, and a healthy dose of self-control. It requires a certain degree of self-awareness in order for us to do it consistently.


Just like our perception of the physical world can be different depending on our standards and values, we need to accept that others measure themselves and the world differently than we do.

When you shift towards contemplation and monitor your emotions and thoughts, you allow more empathy to enter your system. This makes room for more compassion towards what someone else might be going through.

Those who judge will never understand, and those who understand will never judge.

– Wilson Kanadi


Judgment is the sum of our thoughts, feelings, and observations. Our brain is forced to make tons of judgments every day; some good, some bad, and some neutral. The problem with judging people is that we reduce them down to a handful of characteristics, completely ignoring the fact that people are complex, three-dimensional beings with many different sides.

We tend to think we’ve got someone figured out for the most part, and we don’t leave much room to be proven otherwise.

Judging others is a distraction from what already exists in our own lives. The more we judge someone about a speck in their eye, the more we ignore the speck in our own. We don’t have an iota of information, yet the voice of judgment rings loud in our heads leading us to snap judgments, stereotypes and assumptions.


We look down on others as if we are so much better. The tendency to judge creates division between people. The judging mind is very divisive. It separates. Separation closes the heart.

Putting someone else down may make us feel temporarily better about ourselves. The ego is a master magician, constantly deflecting our attention, distracting us from our own shortcomings and the inner work that we need to do to improve ourselves.

Shifting out of judgment means learning to appreciate others with an open heart. We don’t all have to be the same and that’s okay. We can allow ourselves and others to just be, without separation.


It is not our job to change other people. We can offer advice, lead by example, and inspire people, but it is up to each individual person to decide to improve their lives. Let people have room to be who they are.

You must accept that you cannot change a person’s values for them. Just as we must choose our own measurement by ourselves and for ourselves, they too must do it by themselves. So there is no reason to assert yourself in these kinds of scenarios.

Resisting the urge to judge someone doesn’t mean we have to agree with everything they do. If we could learn to confidently embrace ourselves as we truly are, there is no need to put someone else down just to raise ourselves up.


We can certainly break the pattern and move beyond it with the understanding that every person, every situation, every experience is simply a reflection of our own inner being. Acknowledging these feelings are very powerful. Once you start gaining awareness of your thought patterns, not only will you become more compassionate, you will get to know yourself a little bit better too.

If we could all learn to love ourselves and therefore reflect that back to the world, we would make our world a much kinder and much less judgmental place. It’s hard to remember that creating a loving, accepting world starts with us, in both our thoughts and actions. The more that we judge others, the less room we have for love.

Let’s put out into the universe what we intend to get back. Be a source of love and light. Find the strength to become a beacon of acceptance.

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