Judged! Ever feel like you’ve been judged by someone? You know, that really uncomfortable feeling that triggers all sorts of self worth and self esteem issues? Have you ever wanted to shout at someone, “Stop judging me!” This has been one of my own lifelong peeves. Where does this come from, this feeling judged? Why does it bother some of us so much? And what can we do to take our power back so as to never feel enslaved by this judged feeling again?
How it All Begins
Generally, we were judged by someone in our early childhood. Perhaps our parents told us we were naughty because we did something they didn’t like. They judged this behavior as bad, and so when we engaged in it, we were told we were bad or naughty. Or perhaps we went to kindergarten, and we were a little different from the other kids. Human ego doesn’t like differences and is programmed to punish others for being different, whether it’s looking different, having a different opinion, being smarter or less smart, having a different way of doing things or seeing things – whatever the case may be. Even babies will judge, punish, and cast out those who have different likes and dislikes than their own. This is because we need to believe in our reality so that we can feel safe, and when someone comes around who is different somehow, it challenges our belief systems and reality. We’re programmed to try to conform and force others to conform so as to reinforce our reality. If our reality is challenged, we feel unsafe and insecure, and our human egos are programmed to judge those who are different from us as dangerous to our survival.
We’re taught by parents, peers, teachers, religion, media and the like, what is acceptable and what is not acceptable regarding our looks, viewpoints, behaviors… virtually all facets of our lives. We learn what to like about ourselves and what not to like. We learn how to judge ourselves and each other. If our parents dislike something, we watch and learn what they dislike, because we understand innately that being agreeable with our parents gets us love and attention, and for children, parental love is as crucial for survival as is food, water and air. We learn very quickly what our parents have judged as bad or unwanted, and we develop the same judgments while pushing away that which is different, so that we may maintain parental love, approval and attention.
When we do not receive the love and approval we so desperately needed, we develop programs and beliefs about being worthless, not enough, not good enough, less than, codependent, and various other beliefs that are detrimental to our self esteem, boundary setting, and all the emotions that go along with negative beliefs about ourselves. We grow up entrenched in worries about what other people think of us. In some cases, we realize that we have to behave in ways our parents have judged as “bad” in order to get any attention from them at all, and too often, the reaction from our parents is that of punishment, and sometimes even abuse. Children may then develop beliefs about themselves being bad or evil, and create survival strategies based in rebelliousness, anger, rage, fear, narcopathy and hatred. These ideas then get projected onto other people, as they become the filters through which they see all life through. Identities get set as victim and perpetrator or codependent and narcopath/narcissist.
Every bit of it is ultimately based in self judgment and an inherent lack of self love.
All Judgment is Self Judgment
The truth of the matter is that all judgment is really self judgment. We judge something as good or bad, wanted or unwanted, project that judgment onto ourselves, and then project it onto others. This is mostly done unconsciously. As we are typically unaware that we do this, we become blind to our own self judgment, and instead see what we have judged as bad or unwanted onto others instead. Every person who comes into our awareness serves as a mirror for us to see what we have judged about ourselves. When someone triggers the judgments we make about ourselves, our human reaction is to point a finger at the person who shows us and then condemn them for it. We do this to them, and they do this to us. It is our collective programming that makes this so, along with missing data – specifically: what do unconditional love and acceptance feel like? Because we are missing that data, we substitute judgment as the means to which we can feel better about ourselves, so that we can continue to deny and suppress the fact that we don’t actually know what unconditional love and acceptance feels like. It was never taught to us, so therefore, we never learned how to give that to ourselves.
For example, do you feel angry when someone cuts into a line in front of you? Let’s say you were clearly there first – in fact, you’ve been waiting an hour in this line. Somebody comes in and jumps ahead of you in this long line that you’ve been waiting in for so long. How do you react to that? Do you think to yourself, “oh that no-good, self-important, narcissistic bitch, how dare she!” Do you judge that person? Do you feel all riled up in your solar plexus area and feel your heart start beating a little faster while your blood pressure starts to rise? Be honest now. It’s OK. I’ve had that reaction, and more than a couple of times, too. I seemed to be a magnet for people cutting in lines in front of me and cutting me off in traffic. Why was that? And why did it bother me so much?
In my own case, this came from a lifelong inability to see myself, because I believed I was not seen by my parents. My father reinforced in his words and behavior towards me in my early childhood that I had no right to exist. My mother was raising more babies behind me before I was a year and a half old; before I was six years old, I had three siblings (I was the oldest). There was no time for me to be seen and heard; there was no one to dispel the notion that I was worthless, rather, the opposite. One of my siblings continued to reinforce that notion after my father abandoned us.
So, of course, going through life, and because we all create our reality based on our beliefs about ourselves and the world around us, the only world I could possibly create was one where I was not seen, heard, and where I didn’t have the right to be standing there in line or driving along in a car – I could only attract people who would cut in line in front of me or cut me off in traffic, until I became aware of that subconscious belief and actively worked to reprogram that particular neural pathway within my brain and emotional residue within my body.
Until I developed enough self love and compassion that I could correct the root cause beliefs that I was not seen or heard, and that I didn’t have the right to exist, every time someone would cut in front of me, it would trigger those beliefs that remained within my brain and body, and stir up all the related emotions having to do with worthlessness and unworthiness, along with subconscious (bodily) memories of trauma and abuse from my childhood. And that is exactly why we feel our blood pressure rise and imagined kicks in our solar plexus and adrenaline secretions causing the extremities to shake a little, when we’re triggered that way – because that neural pathway in the brain is still active, and the emotions have yet to be purged from the body. Until then, we are walking magnets, just begging the rest of the world to show us those mirrors so we can see what it is we are still holding onto… but if we are not aware of this, a person comes along holding that mirror, so to speak, and they get judged for it by us. And vice versa. We also hold mirrors for others, triggering all their old stuff, and getting judged for it.
As long as we hold a negative charge about something we regard as unwanted, bad, or otherwise negative or ugly, we feel repulsed by that very thing in another person. If we are not aware of this judgment we have, we project the negative judgment onto the person who carries the trait that we have judged and condemned.
Taking Your Power Back
So how do you get out of this judgment trap, stop feeling judged, and get to the bottom of what you’re holding onto in your brain and body-mind, so that you can feel free and happy, once and for all? It’s a process. It’s not a quick fix. It can take a lot of work, and it definitely requires a real commitment to yourself. Some days, you might want to give up, throw in the towel, call it quits, and that’s OK. Some days we get to feel like that.
The first step in taking your power back is to cut yourself some slack. Take a load off. Your programming is not your fault. It is your responsibility to correct it, once you become aware of it and decide that you want to be happy. But the programming you downloaded from life as a child is absolutely not your fault. Yes, your soul chose it for your life lessons. But what are you going to do about that, get mad at your soul? I’ve tried that. It doesn’t work. You are your soul. And you are also entitled to all of your feelings. Every single one of them. So you know what? It’s OK to get mad at your parents and your abusive sibling(s). It’s OK to hate them for as long as it takes you to feel safe with yourself and your emotions. It’s OK to stop judging yourself for getting angry and hating them. Your body-mind needs to feel what it feels. It needs you to acknowledge it and stop lying to yourself. It needs that from you, so that it can then begin to let those emotions go. Your body holds onto your emotions for you until your mind is able to comprehend and process the cause for them, at which time you find the beliefs behind them and correct those beliefs. So give yourself permission to be completely honest with yourself about everything you are feeling, and ask yourself why you feel the way you do. If you’d like some assistance with this process, contact me about getting some coaching, or find another coach who you resonate with who can assist you through this process.
Next, you want to really focus on loving yourself. This is a lot easier said than done. Think about how you talk to your pet. If you’re like me, you do that baby-talk thing to your pet. “Oooh you’re so cute! Oooh you’re such a good boy! I wuv woo soooo vewwy vewwy much, my widdw tweetheawt!” And you coo and make silly happy grinny faces, right? Well, I do. But can you look in a mirror and give yourself that same love and affection and attention? Laugh away, but I’m really not joking here. Can you look in the mirror and say something nice to yourself, instead of criticizing the reflection you see? Will you? Because this is really important. Can you take your inner child on a little shopping spree, and let your inner child pick out what s/he wants, and buy that for yourself, without moaning or complaining about what something costs? Can you give yourself little gifts to show yourself that you love and appreciate yourself? This is your next step in taking your power back. Cultivating complete and unconditional love and acceptance for yourself – no matter what it takes. Think better of yourself. Catch yourself when you have a thought that is unloving towards you, apologize to yourself for it, and change it to what you would rather think about yourself. Remember to thank yourself and your body for holding the space for you and working to keep you alive for as long as it takes you to start letting go of the old, hurtful beliefs you’ve had about yourself.
Once you have fallen in love with yourself – and I don’t mean narcissistically – once you have begun to feel actual compassion for yourself and what you have gone through, you actually begin to see others through this new filter of compassion you’ve established. The others who you previously judged, well, they have been through some breathtakingly heartbreaking experiences as well. And there’s something else that begins to happen in this process. You begin to feel less judged by others. The more you love and accept yourself unconditionally, the more power you take back for yourself – withdrawing the power you previously gave others to make you feel bad about yourself or manipulate you or get you to do their bidding. You just stop caring what they think about you, because you’ve come to the point of understanding that, just as you are entitled to all of your beliefs and opinions and feelings, so are they. The more you are able to withdraw your judgment of self and judgment of others, the less you feel judged by anyone, ever again.
It is a process, however, and there is always someone else to come around and trigger you in other ways, to continue to show you what else you still have not seen. So remember to feel what you feel. Notice when you feel judged. Ask for the belief behind the feeling – ask to be shown. Look honestly at what you don’t like about someone, and be completely truthful with yourself in telling yourself exactly what you don’t like about that person. This is telling you what you still have hidden within yourself, that you are ready to let go of.
It all begs the question: If we were all suddenly aware of what it feels like to be loved and accepted unconditionally, and we could hold that unconditional love and acceptance for ourselves, what would life be like? Can you imagine a world where everyone had self love and compassion, and could therefore extend that same love and compassion to others? Such a world would be paradise, wouldn’t it? Perhaps that world is the world we are creating, one by one, as we learn to love ourselves. Perhaps that is 5D living. There’s only one way to find out.