I recognize it is easy to rush to decisions when emotions are high. I ask for time to think about a situation once I realize my emotional state of mind. I take the same approach with assessing the behavior of others and try to avoid judging them, especially when I lack knowledge of all applicable facts.
When conducting performance evaluations at work, I am sure to consult the employee’s personnel file to find out about any extenuating circumstances. I take an objective view instead of being judgmental. It saves animosity on my behalf and allows room for discussion and leadership growth on my part. I cannot possibly judge any employee without fully acknowledging cultural differences and personality as well as firsthand input from them on their issue.
When my child tells me that one of their peers is being mean to them, I ask questions. I find out the circumstances behind the conflict. I wait to find out all the details from the other child as well. At times, it turns out that my child is the instigator. In those cases, I ensure my child apologizes for his/her indiscretion and discuss their role in the incident to encourage discipline, accountability, and respect for others.
I recognize how easy it is to make the life of someone uncomfortable when we pass judgment. We are not perfect, and we have no authority to judge another when we do not know how each of us feel within. So many of us are struggling with mental illness, health issues, familial worries, or just cannot catch a break in life.
This is our chance to refrain from judging others based solely on what see, perceive, and understand to be true. We can use our emotional intelligence to become aware of our situation and also recognize that we may not always know other’s circumstances. People get hurt from being judged wrongly based on past behaviors, how they think, look or act. It may stigmatize, lower self-confidence and self-esteem in not just children but adults as well.
Today, I commit to avoiding judging others by getting the facts. Any judgment calls I make are supported by solid facts. It is important to me that others get a fair chance at all times.
1. How do I respond when I realize the facts presented are unreliable?
2. In what ways do I defend myself when another person judges me without getting the correct information first?
3. When have I been required to make a decision without having all the facts?