essay

Judging Others

We all judge other people. We do it daily. It’s super easy to say that someone hasn’t done the right thing. But it’s a lot harder to actually live and make those decisions and try to do your best.

The fact is, we all struggle, we all fail, and we all succumb to weakness.

So how do we stop judging other people?

Well, first, sometimes we can just keep our mouths shut. That’s always helpful.

Second, we can remember that we don’t need to condemn individuals and their actions–that’s not our job. We are usually not in a position where we need to determine if someone else’s actions were right or wrong. It’s not helpful to our friends and family; they need our love more than they need our advice about what to do or our opinion about what they have already done. And when we judge strangers, we pretty much are guaranteed that we are getting it wrong anyway.

That’s not to say that we have to be completely tolerant and say that morals are relative and everyone can make their own decisions and there is no right or wrong. There still can be right and wrong, good and evil–but we don’t need to go around applying those standards to individual actions we see or hear about and then condemning people and calling a person right or wrong, good or evil.

We can determine if something is right or wrong for ourselves. We don’t usually need to do that for anyone else. They are responsible for their own actions, and they are not accountable to us for them.

Of course, there are times when judgment is helpful–usually when someone else’s actions directly affects our lives. Sometimes we may have to separate ourselves from people in some way because they have a negative impact on our own life. But that doesn’t mean that we have to harshly judge them in the process. We can still hope for the best and give people space to choose right and wrong.

I make thousands of mistakes; I hope people will give me the benefit of the doubt and know I’m still trying to do the right thing. I want to do the same for others. I want to judge less and love and support a lot more.

We’re in this together and we’re usually trying to head in the same direction. It’s better to keep hiking and to help people up than to point and laugh when they fall.

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