Three years ago, when I was working 9:30 to late at a stressful job with a difficult boss; three years ago, when I was so sick, I weighed less than 100 pounds and didn’t know what to do about it; three years ago, when the only thing that made me happier was hearing about the drama in everyone else’s lives—three years ago, I was a very judgmental person.
Since then, I’ve started working for myself. Since then, I’ve taken up a hobby that feeds me. Since then, I’ve stopped feeding on bitchiness. Since then, I’ve become a lot happier, a lot more productive, a lot better of a person. But I am still judgmental.
It’s something I’ve been actively tamping down on. I give myself mental slaps whenever I nasty comment bubbles up. I call others out on their comments. I turn off noxious reality TV. I counter negatives with positives. I look for solutions instead of more problems. But I am still judgmental.
My judgmental thoughts embarrass me. I would hate for anyone else to hear them, because I would be ashamed…and, if I’m being honest (and obviously, I am) I would be scared for someone else to judge me based on them. It’s a double standard, I know. That’s why I’m chipping away at it.
There are some things that help me get there faster. Alexandra Franzen’s piece on respecting the brave is one of them.
I hope I remember that anyone who is brave enough to stand in front of the world — to read a poem, to share a story, to sing a song, or to (gasp!) give something a try even if they’re not “perfect” yet — deserves my respect.
That’s good, right? I think so, anyway. If I was going to start scribbling reminders on the back of my hand, high school-style, I’d start with Alexandra’s mantra, “Show some respect for the brave.”