We tend to think of criticism when we hear the word judgment. And we associate judgment with being attacked, compared negatively to somebody else, or even being compared to some lofty, ideal standard.
You have been judged. I have been judged.
It’s demotivating and debilitating.
It diminishes the self, and we feel inadequate.
But have you ever thought that approval could be harmful? It’s a form of judgment too, though a much more subtle one.
When we approve of someone else (their looks, their personality, the way they cope with hardship, their wealth, or their successes) we are sitting in judgment over them, and us, as well.
This constant stressful striving – for approval’s very fragile. It leads to editing and fixing so we’re deemed acceptable.
Yet, it’s often very fickle, transitory and subjective. It also can be lost in the twinkling of an eye.
It can be swiftly withdrawn, and even turn to criticism.
Why Does Approval Mean So Much to Us?
If we hunger for approval it tells us something crucial: that we aren’t fully comfortable with who we are right now. We feel we need to change ourselves. Adapt to others’ expectations. Try our best to be someone that others like and value.
Perhaps we don’t like how we look. We feel ashamed of what we’ve done. We feel worthless or inadequate because we’ve been mistreated.
Yet, all of us have flaws. And all of us have made mistakes. And all of us suffered, and been injured in some way.
The greatest gift you give yourself is being there for yourself – always.
It’s accepting who you – a human being who has flaws.
It is embracing all our parts – for all of us are on a journey.
And that’s what makes us whole.
It’s what will truly set us free.
“Be brave enough to take off the masks you wear out there and get to know who you are underneath. Be vulnerable enough to accept your flaws and know that they are what make you human; they are what make you real. Be confident enough to accept and cherish your strengths. Don’t minimize them or hide them They are your beautiful gifts to share with the world. Be brave enough to say, you know what, all of this is who I am. I make so many mistakes. I can be forgetful. I can be messy. But … I am doing my best with what I’ve got. And I am so proud of that. I am so proud of me. And I am proud of who I am becoming.”