I turned to my wife and shared, “I would love it if we could go through this proposal line by line and tear it to pieces. That would really soothe my survival mechanism.”
I said that to her, because the truth is,
Aspirationally, I strive to be an entirely spiritual being. I’d really love to dissolve my judgment, anger, righteousness, and all the other juicy stuff. My life would probably be easier if that stuff never showed up. I’d just be a beam of light, floating through life and light-beaming people in the eyes as a prank. Things might feel lighter.
I know that we’re spiritual beings having a human experience, but, the human part of that experience seems to be non-negotiable. All of the judgment-making that has served my ancestors (and myself) in surviving and getting to this place right now seems to be here to stay.
We all have this tendency.
Even (especially!) the people that walk around holding themselves as above judging others. In my own experience, the people that most claim to be free of judgment are the most judgmental people I’ve met (and the least conscious of their judgment).
I have a friend who is always complaining to me about how negative most people are. Can you see the irony here?
I’m not advocating that this means we should all go on social media and complain bitterly about the people driving us nuts (for me, it’s often coaches and marketers) under the claim that we’ve decided to tell the truth. That’s just a different form of irresponsibility.
Think of it like pooing.
You need to poo right? If you tried to pretend that you didn’t, you’d get into all kinds of problems. You’d hold your poo until you couldn’t anymore, and then it would come out at really inopportune times. You’d feel better when you relieved that pressure, but the rest of us would be left pretty devastated.
And you also wouldn’t just start defecating on the boardroom table in the middle of the meeting that you’re in, proclaiming loudly “I’M JUST BEING AUTHENTIC. I’M A POO-DOER!”. (I’m clumsily trying to draw a parallel to people that call themselves truth-tellers here).
You wouldn’t start squatting in the middle of the sidewalk, no matter the fact that you felt like you really needed to go to the bathroom.
You accept the fact that we all have to go to the bathroom regularly, and you’d be responsible about getting this need met.
What if we just got responsible about our very human need to be judgmental? What if we found ways to honour that need without making it mean anything more than we make the need to poo?