Get Over the Fear of Judgement
Have you ever walked through life with a fear that everyone is judging you?
That was me. And I still have hints of it in my life now. It doesn’t go away; I just now know how to deal with it.
I went through an emotional intelligence training last year, and the biggest thing I walked away with was an understanding of how I developed a fear of judgement from the way I grew up. It was the culprit of my disconnection with others because I was unable to get vulnerable with anyone. I feared that they would size me up and judge me as I talked to them and engaged in relationships.
This fear stemmed from the way my dad showed up to me when I was young. See, I grew up in a very conservative Christian home and when I would want to have a conversation about something that was “right” in the realm of the Christian world, I would get positive affirmations. When I wanted to have conversations or do something that was NOT “right” in the eyes of the church, my dad would get quiet and “process” things, which I not-knowingly walked away from those situations feeling like I was being judged for right or wrong. It wasn’t really the case, but as a kid, that was my interpretation.
From there, I walked into every relationship, friendship or interaction with a fear that the other person was judging me. This led to a lack of vulnerability in my life and relationships, which caused them to suffer. It’s something that troubled me throughout the years, creating a huge disconnect that I couldn’t put my finger on for a while.
It’s easy to lay blame to my father for this, but what I learned through the training is that how I interpret the way someone shows up may not be their intention. They’re doing what they were taught. Only I can choose what to do with it from there.
This fear of judgement turned into me subconsciously judging others, which really means judging myself. Comparing myself to others is a fast track to internal discontent. On the other hand, it’s also been a small catalyst to constantly become better in my craft.
Knowing where your fears come from is a huge way of being able to get over them, or at least not let them rule your life.
When have you judged others? What does that say about how you may be judging yourself?