There’s an idea we get in our minds when hear that someone we know is ‘judgemental’.
We imagine the terrifying aunt that comes around once a year to tell us how disappointed she is at our love lives. We imagine our first ever boss, who would yell at us every time we took a break, even if it was every five minutes. Somehow, we all know what a judgemental person looks like.
The funny thing is, all those ideas that we conjure up, those are judgements. I know. Shock horror. I’m sorry to tell you that you too, are judgemental.
But that’s okay.
In fact. It’s necessary. Even if for some reason we are conditioned from birth that judging people is wrong, it is an unbelievably important skill that for some ridiculous reason we have to re-learn.
I’m not referring to the kind of judgement that looks like making assumptions based on no real fact. No, it is not okay to assume that your neighbour is gay just because he likes wearing pink, it the twenty first century. Ask him like a freaking grown up if it’s so important to you, which it definitely shouldn’t be.
What I’m talking about is the judgement you inevitably make after interacting with someone for a while. It’s not wrong to judge that woman from the office who is a racist. You don’t like the way she speaks, you think she’s a nuisance, that’s perfectly okay. As long as you don’t take it out on her, report her to HR and don’t feel an ounce of guilt.
I am wondering where the guilt came from. Why we have been trained, especially as young people, to believe that judgement is a no-no zone. Frankly, kids need judgement just as much as we do, how else would they determine who their friends are? Which adults they should probably stay away from? What not to say when their parents are already angry at them for not doing chores?
It helps us to protect ourselves, to recognise what we do and don’t like in people, it helps us come out on top in social situations. This incredible superpower that we are apparently supposed to suppress, only to allow successful people use?
I don’t think so.
Don’t feel guilty when you know what you know as long as you don’t hurt anyone. Your powers of judgement and deduction should be treated with reverence. They will certainly be an asset to you along the way.