Judging people tires me out.
It feels good in the moment, like crack for my ego.
What someone posts on Facebook.
The type of clientele at an event.
Sometimes even friends or family who I don’t agree with.
But it gets me nowhere. I’m just left stewing in my own judgment.
So I wondered out loud: What’s the opposite of judging?
I landed on a simple idea:
The opposite of judging is wishing good things onto others.
Not wishing that the person is different, or more, or less.
But wishing them good.
Here’s a thought that immediately transforms my day when I pass by a stranger:
I wish for you to be happy.
Whenever I remember to do this (and the hard part is remembering to do it), I feel amazing.
Any negative energy I was bottling up disappears into the ether.
What comes out through the surface is a happier me.
The fact that this is self serving is not lost upon me. Studies show that “People who engage in kind acts become happier over time” (Sonja Lyubomirsky, Ph.D University of California, Riverside).
Chemistry backs this up too!
Acts of kindness create an emotional warmth, which releases a hormone known as oxytocin. Oxytocin causes the release of a chemical called nitric oxide, which dilates the blood vessels. This reduces blood pressure and, therefore, oxytocin is known as a “cardioprotective” hormone. It protects the heart by lowering blood pressure. (Dr. David R. Hamilton)
Who would’ve thought being kind can make you healthier?
Some happy phrases to try
The great thing about this is that you can do this experiment inside your own head. And no one has to know.
Try one of these on a stranger you pass by tomorrow:
I hope you have a good day.
I wish you happiness.
Sending you good vibes.
Can you imagine if everyone did this?
I think I have the solution to world peace, ladies n gents.
We are what we judge
When we judge others, we also judge ourselves. Every time we make a judgment, it reflects back our values.
Think that dude’s haircut is ugly? You value appearances.
Being judgy about someone’s Instagram? You value your social media presence.
I believe judging people feels good for the ego in the moment, but in reality this creates an emotional house of cards inside of us. The more that we judge, the more opportunities we create to judge ourselves.
Heaven forbid that someone thinks our mullet is ugly or dislikes our Insta post.
It’s no wonder that the most judgmental people we know are also the most unhappy.
Wishing others happiness breaks through all that noise.
Challenge: Do this with the most difficult people
Now we up the ante: try this on someone you have a difficult time with.
Your future ex-husband.
All your enemies!
I dare say the more you dislike someone, the stronger the positive effects of wishing them good.
I wish you happiness.