I have sat down several times to write an update on my week 17 challenge (watching my judgements), but every time I've put my fingers to the keyboard, I've drawn a blank. Partly it's because I'm not sure of exactly what to say, and partly it's because I don't want to come across as sounding pious or inauthentic.
This week has been hard, but not in the way I expected. In some ways I've actually found this week to be particularly 'easy'. And I'm still not sure how to explain it. But here goes my best shot ...
I've been pleasantly surprised to notice that I find it relatively easy to catch myself making judgements. It's something I seem to do naturally, though I'm not sure why. That's not to say I don't judge - I do, just like everyone else; I just seem to be able to see it happening (though, let's be honest, I only see myself catching the ones I see, so there's very likely many that I don't see).
Chatting with friends this week, I've tried to explain my hesitancy to judge people (or at least recognise that my judgement may not be accurate or fair). To me, it's all about realising that I never know someone's full story. I know that for myself, I operate in this world the best way I know how, with all my unique baggage trailing along behind me. This baggage - my story - influences everything I do. No one knows what is going on for me in any given moment; no one can fully appreciate the unique combination of past experiences, current emotional state, intention, desires etc that lead me to act and speak the way I do. So it's the same for everyone - I don't know what leads person x to hold a particular belief or to forget to indicate in traffic. It's not my call to declare that that person must be [insert harsh judgement here]. That's not to excuse poor, inappropriate or criminal behaviour, but it does create a context and maybe some form of explanation.
One thing this week has done is put into the spotlight that we do all judge. It's made me hyper-aware of the fact that I'm likely being judged all the time. Some of these judgements may be right, many are surely wrong, and most of them go unspoken (at least to me).
Hmm ... I fear I'm not explaining myself well this week, so that'll do for now. I think I need to ponder this week's challenge a little more!