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How to be less judgemental of others (and yourself!)

How to be less judgemental of others (and yourself!)

Do you feel you’re always criticising and judging everyone, yourself included? Do you feel bad about it afterwards? You’re certainly not alone! Read on to discover how you can judge less and start to accept things the way they are.

Why do we judge others?

We all make judgements about others; it’s part of human nature. We judge people as soon as we meet them, based merely on their appearance, their clothes and their manners. The problem is we don't really know them at all.

We also pass judgement on those we do know. They do or say something that upsets us, and we feel disappointed or angry with them. We don't try to understand their actions: we just think worse of the person.


Why do we judge ourselves?

Judging ourselves against others is one way in which we establish our identities, for good or bad. We may judge our self-worth based on how our attractiveness, intelligence and wealth compare to others. Self-criticism often stems from a lack of self- confidence and anxiety. Bach Flower Mix 44 is formulated to drive away fears while supporting positive emotions and self-belief.

Instagram and Facebook bombard us with glamorous images. But in a way, this is just stage dressing, and we can never know what’s really going on behind the scenes unless we know the person well. Judging ourselves against others who appear more successful, prettier or wealthier is a sure way to suffering anxiety and stress.

We make social judgements about ourselves because we are not completely happy with who we are. It might not be possible ever to be 100% satisfied with ourselves, (and we’d be pretty smug if we were!). However, rather than criticising ourselves, it’s better to self-assess. We can decide how near we are to being the person we want to be without comparing ourselves to others.

Learn how to judge less

While it’s human nature to judge others, it’s not always helpful to us to do so. Being judgemental doesn’t make us happy. These tips will help you to judge less and be more accepting.

1. Walk in their shoes

When you find yourself passing judging someone because of what they’ve done or how they look, imagine their backstory and the circumstances that might have caused them to act that way. Picture yourself walking in their shoes. Instead of instantly labelling them, try to communicate with them and find out their story. You’ve probably had similar experiences and can remember how they affected the way you felt and acted. Trying to understand someone is the first step towards acceptance.

2. Accept

Once you’ve tried to understand, then just accept. The world is what it is, and most things are beyond your control. Once you’ve acknowledged that you’re unlikely to be able to change the situation, you can stop feeling frustrated, inadequate, angry or envious and can start to move on from these negative feelings.

3. Be curious

Be curious and live your life as fully as possible. Packing in as many new and exciting experiences as you can will crowd out self-criticism and leave little room for judging others.

4. Avoid universal judgement

Just because you’ve judged a person as lacking a particular skill, don’t fall into the trap of applying this assessment to all areas of their life. Nearly everyone is better at some things than they are at others: if a person is a poor communicator, they might be great at maths and vice versa.

5. Observe rather than evaluate

We need to distinguish between evaluations (judgements) and observations. Evaluations that we make when judging yourself are just opinions, such as “I’m foolish”, or “I can’t motivate myself”. The same applies to our evaluations of others: “He’s doing that all wrong” or “She was very rude to me”. Rather than evaluating a situation, say what you see and express your own feelings regarding the situation. For example, “I’m cross because she pushed to the front of the queue”.

This pause for reflection allows you to judge the action, not the person. Pushing to the front of the queue is a rude action, for sure, but perhaps the person thought they had a good reason for acting in such a way? As the old saying has it, judge the sin, not the sinner.

Can we ever be non-judgemental?

The judgements we make about others are an unavoidable part of life, but we can all learn to be a bit less quick to judge others and ourselves. Developing new habits and a more positive way of looking at the world will take time and practice, but it’s well worth it as it will make your life happier.

Created by Tom Vermeersch

Tom Vermeersch

Tom Vermeersch is a certified Psychologist and Bach flower expert with more than 30 years of experience.

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How to be less judgemental of others (and yourself!)

How to be less judgemental of others (and yourself!)
How to be less judgemental of others (and yourself!)

Do you feel you’re always criticising and judging everyone, yourself included? Do you feel bad about it afterwards? You’re certainly not alone! Read on to discover how you can judge less and start to accept things the way they are.

Why do we judge others?

We all make judgements about others; it’s part of human nature. We judge people as soon as we meet them, based merely on their appearance, their clothes and their manners. The problem is we don't really know them at all.

We also pass judgement on those we do know. They do or say something that upsets us, and we feel disappointed or angry with them. We don't try to understand their actions: we just think worse of the person.

Bach flowers personal mix

Bach flowers personal mix:

  • Personal combination
  • Based on your symptoms and character
  • Bach flower remedy personally selected by Tom
  • Fast and good results
Discover how Personal Bach flowers remedy - Wizard can help you

Why do we judge ourselves?

Judging ourselves against others is one way in which we establish our identities, for good or bad. We may judge our self-worth based on how our attractiveness, intelligence and wealth compare to others. Self-criticism often stems from a lack of self- confidence and anxiety. Bach Flower Mix 44 is formulated to drive away fears while supporting positive emotions and self-belief.

Instagram and Facebook bombard us with glamorous images. But in a way, this is just stage dressing, and we can never know what’s really going on behind the scenes unless we know the person well. Judging ourselves against others who appear more successful, prettier or wealthier is a sure way to suffering anxiety and stress.

We make social judgements about ourselves because we are not completely happy with who we are. It might not be possible ever to be 100% satisfied with ourselves, (and we’d be pretty smug if we were!). However, rather than criticising ourselves, it’s better to self-assess. We can decide how near we are to being the person we want to be without comparing ourselves to others.

Learn how to judge less

While it’s human nature to judge others, it’s not always helpful to us to do so. Being judgemental doesn’t make us happy. These tips will help you to judge less and be more accepting.

1. Walk in their shoes

When you find yourself passing judging someone because of what they’ve done or how they look, imagine their backstory and the circumstances that might have caused them to act that way. Picture yourself walking in their shoes. Instead of instantly labelling them, try to communicate with them and find out their story. You’ve probably had similar experiences and can remember how they affected the way you felt and acted. Trying to understand someone is the first step towards acceptance.

2. Accept

Once you’ve tried to understand, then just accept. The world is what it is, and most things are beyond your control. Once you’ve acknowledged that you’re unlikely to be able to change the situation, you can stop feeling frustrated, inadequate, angry or envious and can start to move on from these negative feelings.

3. Be curious

Be curious and live your life as fully as possible. Packing in as many new and exciting experiences as you can will crowd out self-criticism and leave little room for judging others.

4. Avoid universal judgement

Just because you’ve judged a person as lacking a particular skill, don’t fall into the trap of applying this assessment to all areas of their life. Nearly everyone is better at some things than they are at others: if a person is a poor communicator, they might be great at maths and vice versa.

5. Observe rather than evaluate

We need to distinguish between evaluations (judgements) and observations. Evaluations that we make when judging yourself are just opinions, such as “I’m foolish”, or “I can’t motivate myself”. The same applies to our evaluations of others: “He’s doing that all wrong” or “She was very rude to me”. Rather than evaluating a situation, say what you see and express your own feelings regarding the situation. For example, “I’m cross because she pushed to the front of the queue”.

This pause for reflection allows you to judge the action, not the person. Pushing to the front of the queue is a rude action, for sure, but perhaps the person thought they had a good reason for acting in such a way? As the old saying has it, judge the sin, not the sinner.

Can we ever be non-judgemental?

The judgements we make about others are an unavoidable part of life, but we can all learn to be a bit less quick to judge others and ourselves. Developing new habits and a more positive way of looking at the world will take time and practice, but it’s well worth it as it will make your life happier.


Marie Pure

Other articles


Is the world as we know it over

Is the world as we know it over?

Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, governments around the world have taken unprecedented measures to stop the spread of coronavirus. The rapid changes we've seen have had an impact on almost every aspect of our lives.

Read the complete article

12 easy ways to get people to like you

12 easy ways to get people to like you

Have you ever noticed that some people are instantly likeable? Many people believe that people will only like you because of natural traits you're born with: good looks, talent and sociability. But this is a misconception. Getting people to like you is within your control, and it's all to do with self-belief, knowing yourself and being emotionally intelligent. Here's what to do to be more likeable.

Read the complete article

How to spot toxic behaviour

How to spot toxic behaviour

You see the word "toxic" everywhere these days, but what does it really mean? You've almost certainly come across someone who fits the description. Dealing with difficult personalities can be challenging and emotionally exhausting, to say the least.

Read the complete article

How to spice up your life

How to spice up your life

Do you feel you're always doing the same things and not getting anywhere? It's common to feel stuck in a rut, treading water and just going through the motions.

Read the complete article

Isn't depression just a fancy word for feeling a bit down

Isn't depression just a fancy word for feeling a bit down?

Mental health issues such as depression and anxiety affect around 1 in 6 people at some stage of their life. Despite it being such a common problem, many sufferers wait months or even years before seeking help.

Read the complete article

Dealing with British Summer Time

Dealing with British Summer Time

Some people are overly sensitive to the time change and it can take days, if not weeks, for them to feel right again, while others barely even notice. 

Read the complete article

Is your sex life putting your relationship at risk

Is your sex life putting your relationship at risk?

Sexual desire is a complex interaction of hormones, emotions and well-being. When your partner is not as interested in sex as you are, it’s rarely a rejection of you as a person. So it’s essential to be as empathetic as you can regarding your differing libidos.

Read the complete article

How to stop everything going wrong

How to stop everything going wrong

Do you always feel that everything’s always going wrong? Find out how to stop this cycle of bad thoughts in its tracks. When you think positively, things will start to appear positive and you will eventually feel more positive and optimistic.

Read the complete article

Simple tips to not be afraid of the future

Simple tips to not be afraid of the future

No one knows what the future holds, so don't waste time and energy worrying about it. Read our tips and find out how to stop being afraid of what might never happen.

Read the complete article

Fact or fiction Is it truly healthy

Fact or fiction? Is it truly healthy?

There's so much contradictory health advice out there, it gets confusing. One year, butter is said to be bad for you, and margarine is better. The following year, it's the other way around. One article says running causes strain on your joints; another says it's good for you because it increases bone strength.

Read the complete article

Bach Flowers are not medicinal but harmless plant extracts which are used to support health.

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