Tag Archive: judgement

Self Worth


I was blasted with judgment this week – other people’s judgments of me. They don’t really know me. Their judgments were based on their own fears and prejudices, projected onto me.

It’s bound to happen to any of us who become visible, who have a differing opinion, who have chosen to go a different route than the one chosen by the one judging.

At times, the judgment is valid. Often – even if it is valid – it’s colored by the judge’s personal lenses, coming out distorted. Like a mirror in the House of Mirrors.

No matter what’s happening inside the judge, what’s important is how you work with this bullet that’s come your way.

First, get to a calm place. Try not to be so offended or hurt that you aren’t able to do anything. Yes, you probably will be hurt, so let it flow through you as fast as possible, so that you can have an opportunity to look at the judgment with impartial eyes. This might mean going for a walk in Nature, or smudging to clear yourself. Breathing deeply for a few minutes; reminding yourself that you and they are human and fallible.

Then, once you’re in a better heart-space and calm, see if there is anything to it – in other words, ignore the distortions and look for the gem.  Whatever is there for you to learn and grow by is a gem.  People who we have difficulties with often feed us such gems – but if we’re defensive, we can miss them.

Finally, verify what you know to be true about you, no matter the judgment.  Most of us try to be the best we can be. All of us have qualities that are worth having and sharing.  These are the qualities that are worth focusing on, and nurturing.

Doing these 3 things – get calm, find the gem and learn, verify your own truth – are the foundation of having a strong sense of self worth.

There will never be a time when everyone agrees with you and likes you.  None of that matters very much, as long as you like yourself.



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Maryanne Nicholls is a Registered Psychotherapist.  To find out more, gain access to her weekly newsletter, meditations and programmes, sign up at www.thejoyofliving.co .



Non-Judging, one of the 7 pillars of mindfulness


I first read of the 7 pillars of mindfulness in Jon Kabat-Zinn’s book on mindfulness Full Catastrophe Living. These pillars are Buddhist principles that help us be present and mindful in our everyday living. The 7 meditations I offer to anyone who signs up on my website www.thejoyofliving.co are based on these, and I use them in my own meditation practice.

The one I’d like to cover today is non-judging. When we judge, we form an opinion about something.  There’s nothing inherently wrong with that – it’s how our mind works – comparing and weighing whether something is good or not good for us.  It’s important to our security to be able to judge.  It’s what our minds do best – if our assumptions are solid and we have all the facts.

But judging can also be a sign of our lack of self-acceptance. For instance, when I find myself judging the way a friend addresses me, it’s probably because I’m not feeling good about myself and am afraid that others will feel the same about me. Let’s say I gained 5 pouds seemingly overnight; this is something I’m sensitive about, so I’ll likely notice if someone comments on my appearance, take it the wrong way, and generate a judgmental story in my mind that makes me feel miserable.

On the other hand, when I’m feeling good and confident, I’m far less sensitive to any supposed slights. When I’m feeling on top of my world, even if someone came up to me and was explicit about my size, I’d probably laugh it off, knowing that what they said was really about them and not so much about me.

When I’m busy judging, it means my mind is occupied, and I’m not even able to really see what’s actually going on around me. The act of deliberately not judging what comes into awareness means we are with whatever comes up, as an impartial witness.  It allows us to feel what the judgments hide – the pain or anguish that’s really going on inside us.

Some people believe that meditation is a means of making ourselves feel calm. Sometimes that happens. But at other times, we aren’t calm, and during those times, meditation helps us be with our lack of calmness, without judging that lack of calmness as good or bad, as some kind of failure or lack on our part.

I invite you to discover your own way of judging in your world, by takeing 10 minutes and noticing your own judging patterns – along with any underlying feelings that might arise. And when you do this, do it with kindness and compassion for whatever it is you find.


Maryanne Nicholls is a Registered Psychotherapist.  To find out more, gain access to her weekly newsletter, meditations and programmes, sign up at www.thejoyofliving.co .