“Only God, and 100 million Egyptians will judge you!”
I read this quote on social media and I honestly wanted to laugh and cry at the same time because as an Egyptian, this is really a big part of our daily routine. On a more serious note, I want to say that this statement is an example of generalization, not every Egyptian is judgmental. Also, this holds true for other nations as well and not only Egypt.
By the way, I’m not excluding myself from the 100 million mentioned above. Everyone is judgmental in some situation or at some point in their life. I’m very skeptical about people who claim themselves to be absolutely ‘non-judgmental’ because most of us fall into this trap one way or another. It’s actually a human survival mechanism. Yes, we use it to assess danger and protect ourselves. However, the extent of this habit could very well vary from one person to the other.
Usually, when we use the term ‘judgmental’, we refer to someone passing harsh judgment or criticizing others when coming across appearances, behaviors or situations that are found to be awkward or unusual for that individual. It’s very subjective, however, there are some tips that can help us have a less judgmental attitude:
1. Be aware of what you think and why: Asthea first step, we need to be aware when we are passing too many judgments or when we are being exceedingly critical of a person or a situation and ask ourselves “why am I doing this?” People are often just projecting their own fears.
2. Propose a kinder thought: We need to propose a counter thought that will help us rationalize the behavior or the appearance in a more positive or kinder way.
3. Put ourselves in others’ shoes: To be empathetic, we need to simply imagine ourselves in the other person’s shoes. This is not easy for everyone to do, but it won’t hurt to at least try to ask ourselves what would we have done differently, if we were that other person?
4. Avoid negative conversations: Negativity is contiguous and there will be social circles that bring us together with negative people – especially gossipers. We need to avoid this whenever we can or at least not participate in such negative conversations.
5. Recognize stereotyping: I started my article by stating that talking about Egyptians being judgmental is actually a generation, because we need to firstly recognize generalizations and try to avoid them. When passing a judgment, we have to think for ourselves and ask if it holds true across the board?
Everyone is fighting a battle that we aren’t aware of. We can’t read people’s mind and we certainly can’t judge why they are behaving the way that they do. Being judgmental is toxic for all. It’s indeed a heavy burden that we choose to carry when we pass a negative judgment on a living soul.