(If you are having trouble viewing this video Getting over Fear of Judgement)
In this video/post, I will be talking about fear of judgement, and specifically what I’ve done to reduce this fear.
In the first video, I explained that my husband and I weren’t worried about what would happen to our daughter should she die because of our beliefs in the afterlife.
When we came to this realization, we also realized that our fears were mainly related to fear of failure (which was covered in Video #2) and fear of judgement.
What do I mean by fear of judgement?
Exactly what it sounds like. We were worried about what other people would think. We were worried that if we failed at our jobs as parents to keep Hailey safe and alive what would other people think?
Now, I don’t believe people would openly judge us and say what terrible parents we were, especially if it was SIDS.
But so often we look at someone else’s situation and think “it can’t happen to us because we do this, this, and that differently”. Or “there is probably a bit more to the storey than they’re sharing”, or “I’m sure there’s some logical explanation for it”.
When we look for justification or rationale, there’s an underlying belief that something went wrong and if they hadn’t have done it that way then they would have gotten a different result.
Not judgement in the accusatory blatant way, but rather in the “they must have done something they weren’t supposed to” way.
So how do we get over this sense of judgement or fear that others will think we are doing something wrong?
3 Tips to reduce the feeling of being judged
I’m going to share 3 strategies/tips that I use on a daily basis that have reduced my feeling of being judged by others and have increased my confidence in the decisions I’m making as a parent.
These are actually mindsets that I developed while I was trying to get pregnant so they are applicable to more than just the SIDS example I’m using in this series.
1. You can’t feel judged by others unless you are judging yourself – The feeling of judgement is really our perception about what other people are thinking. But the majority of the time, we actually don’t know what they are thinking.
So often, when we feel judgement we need to ask ourselves if we are feeling insecure about that particular action, thought, approach…whatever it is that you feel someone else is judging you for.
I have found that once I get over my insecurity that someone could be saying the exact same things to me as before but it’s no longer upsetting me. And in fact, often I won’t even notice anymore.
2. Treat yourself as you would your best friend – I’m referring to the conversation that you have in your head on a daily basis.
We are often SO hard on ourselves. We constantly put ourselves down. If we screw up (even the most minor thing) we come down hard on ourselves.
I’m willing to bet that you wouldn’t say half of the things you say to yourself to your best friend. At least that’s what I found.
So when you catch yourself being critical of yourself, first notice it – become more aware of what you are doing. Ask yourself if you would say that to your best friend. If not, show yourself a bit of compassion and play the understanding game.
For example, when Hailey fell off the couch a while ago my inner monologue could have gone like “you weren’t paying attention, this is your fault, how could you be so neglectful, she’s hurt because of you, etc.”
But instead, I chose to say to myself “you’re doing your best, you can’t be attached to her all of the time, she’s going to have worse injuries than that in her life, she needs to learn, you’ve caught her so many times but you can’t be perfect”. These are the types of things I would say to my close friends (or to be perfectly honest, a complete stranger).
By showing compassion toward yourself you will judge yourself less.
When you aren’t judging yourself you won’t feel judged by others.
3. Show compassion and understanding toward others – We often tend to think that others think and feel the same way as us.
So when we are openly critical, talking about our friends, coworkers, family, or complete strangers we also have this belief that others do the same thing.
After all, if we do it then other people must do it too. Right?
So now, when I’m faced with a gossip opportunity or am talking to another parent about how they’re approaching something in completely different way than I would I play the understanding game.
Instead of either trying to convince them of my position, or waiting until they leave and turning to a friend and saying “can you believe that they are doing that?” I play the understanding game.
I look at them and see that they are doing their best. They have the best intentions but they’re just doing it differently. I don’t have to agree with everyone.
I may offer my opinions, but I do it from a compassionate, suggestive point of view rather than an attempt to persuade them.
In the same manner I used to believe that everyone talks about each other behind their backs, I now believe that others show compassion and understanding toward me and don’t judge me because that is what I now typically show toward others.
And everyone thinks and feels the same as me, right?
So because I’m judging others less, I feel less judged myself.
There you have it. Those are my 3 tips to help reduce the feeling of judgement from others. They were:
- You can’t feel judged by others unless you are judging yourself
- Treat yourself as you would your best friend
- Show compassion and understanding toward others
If you liked this video/post or learned something new please share it with your friends.
Don’t be afraid of judgement. 🙂