Who or what are you judging … and what does it say about YOU?

Let’s face it – it’s difficult NOT to pass judgement on people, situation, things … all manner of scenarios. Sometimes it’s entirely appropriate that we should do so. And sometimes, our judging someone or something actually says more about US than about the thing or person we’re judging ….


1) What THINGS are you judging?

I’ve been having a fascinating series of conversations with a friend recently, about art and various artists. I used to work in a music and drama academy, surrounded by gifted performers and academics.

The arts are VERY subjective: I tend to hang pictures on my walls that I like to look at and that make me think, and listen to music that sounds nice to me. Fairly pedestrian considerations, I know.

I’m aware, though, that my artist friend’s judgement on paintings, and my musician colleagues’ judgement is far more well informed than my own.

My point is this: if you’re forming a judgement on something – is it on the basis of knowledge and understanding … or on a gut reaction? Which does it actually need to be … and could a hasty judgement be revealing your lack of knowledge? And might you, yourself, be judged on the basis of that?


2) What SITUATIONS are you judging ?

Strange, isn’t it, how two people can tell you about a single situation and the two versions will be completely different.

I was delivering a training programme recently, and one participant in particular seemed to be reluctant to take any of the learning on board, providing every reason under the sun why the techniques and skills wouldn’t work for her: “in MY department …” “… with MY boss …” “… with MY colleagues …”

Rather than underlining the impossible challenges of her workplace, and the unreasonable attitude of her boss and her colleagues, she was actually revealing more about her own accepted status as a victim, and her unwillingness to even make an attempt at rectifying her situation.

When you judge a situation, what does it actually reveal about your own attitude, mindset and approach? Are you positive and proactive … or negative and ready to throw in the towel? And how might others be judging YOU on those attitudes?


3) WHO are you judging?

Who are you judging… and more to the point, on the basis of what? I’ve fallen into the trap many, many times of judging people on the basis of what they tell me about themselves, rather than on the basis of what they actually DO … and then been badly let down.

Alternatively, I’ve met people who have judged me on the basis of my apparent position.

One of my first jobs after graduating from university was as ‘Hospitality Co-ordinator’ on a live daytime TV show, greeting guests, showing them to their dressing rooms and so on.

I was privileged to meet some of the biggest show business names of the day. Some of them: Sir Tom Jones (plain old ‘Tom Jones’ as he was then), Barry Manilow, Neil Sedaka, were absolutely charming and polite to everyone – from me to the floor crew to the girls in make-up: everyone. David Hasselhoff arrived in a vibrant purple suit, and was absolutely great. Sir Cliff Richard signed autographs for fans outside the front door in the rain.

Others (who will remain nameless) didn’t even look our way, and those who didn’t have minions to cater for their whims only spoke to issue commands.

You know what? Their intent might have been to impress everyone with their personal status. They might have judged that by treating those whom they perceived as inferior with disdain they were enhancing their own position. Far from it. They absolutely failed to impress.

So who are you judging, on the basis of what, and with what intent? And by the same token … what does that tell the world about YOU?


So go ahead and make a considered judgement by all means. But bear in mind that it might be more to the point to look  in the mirror first.


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