I freely admit that I can be judgemental at times.
I believe it’s necessary to size up the people you come across. After all, you’re defined by the people you associate with, and they invariably have an effect on your life.
And yes, I know there’s a difference between having good judgement and being judgemental. But here’s my take on it.
Being judgemental means jumping to conclusions about someone, with nothing but your own personal biases at play. And while that’s not always a good thing, I do think there are times when quick judgement calls need to be made.
Here is an example: Years ago I was asked to vet a potential staff member at a cafe. The waitress accidentally spilled the coffee on the saucer as she placed it on the table and I noticed his expression of disdain. That was enough for me to decide that he wasn’t a good fit for our team.
There are times when I make judgements mostly by instinct. I’ve occasionally met people that I’ve taken an instant dislike to, or I’ve witnessed some sort of bad behaviour that I believe is just the tip of the iceberg.
But being labelled judgemental doesn’t worry me. I know that for the most part, I make reasonably informed decisions and I believe that people know that I have integrity and that I always work on being generous and kind.
Good judgement is more of a process. It involves making an assessment based on observation without subjective criticism, and I believe it’s important to evaluate someone’s actions or personality based on an understanding of where they are coming from – their background, experiences and intention.
But when it comes down to it, we all judge the people in our lives by a combination of things – their words, actions and behaviour. That is, after all, what defines their character.
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