I examined the four bullet points I mentioned in my previous post. In order to find out how sound my judgements actually are, especially since they are influenced by:
- my habits in comparing and judging
- my upbringing in which I learned to compare and judge
- my skills in comparing and ranking
- the premisses I use when judging
Here now follows what is true for me.
And for nobody else.
So just read it as a little insight into me or as an example how you can approach these points yourself. Please note that when I talk about my upbringing, you have to keep in mind that what I write does NOT reflect upon my parents. It only reflects upon me. It shows what I picked up growing up, not what my parents were presenting me to pick up.
MY HABITS when I compare, rank or judge
- I always compare and judge. Always. If I breathe, I rank. It would be great to spend some time not comparing, not judging. This would probably bring some rest. It’s what meditation and mindfulness is about. Lots of people love it.
- I make lots of lists. To remember things. But above all to plan things. To plan the future. I seldom succeed in doing all the things I planned. Lists are usually mocking me, taunting me. I feel inadequacy when trying to shoe horn a list into reality. This is not right. I am using lists wrong. They are not a tool for judging, just for planning and flaky memory.
- I’m always making plans for the future. For the next half hour, for tomorrow, for next month. Do I live in the present much? Enjoying the things I have in the here and now? Am I content much?
MY UPBRINGING concerning judging
- I was trained to learn and compare from a very young age. It yielded praise, whenever I showed that I was sharp, analyzing, observant.
- I also was thoroughly trained to judge and I picked up the framework for this from others, not myself.
- Praise was clearly articulated when results were visible. Such as with school grades or that time I decorated the bathroom and was rewarded with a piece of jewellery for my effort to make the house nice. I don’t remember hearing praise for having played well with friends or for comforting a sibling.
- Specific things remained unsaid, things as me being lovable, good or pretty just the way I am. These things probably go without saying in a loving home. I, having a slightly ASS personality, do not pick up on things unsaid. Therefor I may now lack a basic conviction that I am good, worthy, pretty or safe just the way I am.
- I remember what was said. Some things stuck, such as lovingly being called “darling troll” by my father or “little fatty” by a school pal. It made me judge myself and my body harshly. (The school pal is now a psychologist specialized in helping women with Anorexia, btw.) Another thing that was said and that stuck was my dad proclaiming that this was hís house since hé paid the mortgage. I instantly felt unsafe because it was my house too since I’d lived there all my life and it was home. That that emotional attachment didn’t count was startling.
- There were clear judgements cast against me that unfortunately were not explained, leaving me without a clue and without a solution for the problem at hand. One was: “C’est le ton qui fait la musique!”. It seems I had a terrible intonation that can make your blood boil. I still have no idea how I did that. The other was: “You’re NOT his mother!” whenever I tried to solve a social problem my brother was having, in my own childish way. Probably used that tone that boils blood…
- Ambition was ingrained in all of us. Sky high ambition. It’s a family thing on my fathers side, all my cousins have it too. You have to aim for the highest. Always.
- Superiority was ingrained too. We are smarter then everybody else. I never picked up any tools or clues how to handle dealing with being better than everybody else though. Feeling superior sure did block looking outside of the home for clues or examples for leading a worthy life.
- Visibility, fame even, is a necessity if you are to be of any value. Invisibility = mediocracy = deplorable (=worthless)
Again let me stress: this is what I picked up from my upbringing, it’s not what my parents envisioned or presented. They’ll certainly won’t recognize our home life in this. Neither will my brother. Let’s therefor stipulate that I was a weird character to raise and I probably didn’t fit well with the characters of my parents. Or the world in general.
SKILLS I use when judging
- I’m extremely skilled in noticing things. Details, consequences, the big picture, you name it and I’ve probably noticed it already. And thought about it. From numerous perspectives. And designed a t-shirt about it. This is a nice skill to have when you have to sit around a lot and wait. I have a lively mental interior with lots of interesting thoughts and am seldom bored. It’s not so handy for other reasons: I am so skilled that I often don’t even notice that I am comparing, ranking, judging. Always comparing. This may be preventing an other approach to surface.
- I have a somewhat blind spot for emotions and emotional values. I’ve learned to reduce the blind spot in therapy but I still have a bias towards cerebral points of view. This makes me weak in recognizing and using heartfelt comparisons, rankings and judgements. Which are valuable in and of themselves. There’s treasure for me to be found there. Happiness.
- I have trouble choosing. I’m great in decision making. But choosing? Nope. When the alternatives are not comparable and when it comes down to “what do you prefer?” I grind to a halt.
PREMISSES; the values I base my judgement on without even realizing it
- Visibility is important.
- Acknowledgements from others equals worthiness.
- Money is a currency for acknowledgement.
- Purity of heart is the only option.
- We are duty bound to have good intentions AND procure good outcomes as a result of them. Just good intentions are not going to cut it.
- Avoidable faults are a blemish on my character. Blame should be assigned. Even if the consequences could not have been foreseen. They’re still my fault because I’m convinced I could have foreseen them. If only I had tried a little harder. Were a little smarter.
- The outcome, the eventual result, of an action reflects on the quality of the judgement AND of the judger. Even though one has little to do with the other. A result is as much influenced by time, life, luck and the weather as it is by the judgement that prompted the action. Still this is a premise I use…
I am one shackled lady…
This is not good. This page is riddled with constraints and kill joys and flawed, deeply flawed starting points.
Quickly, on to part 3C: WHAT WOULD BE BETTER HABITS, VALUES, SKILLS and PREMISSES for me.
pics by Stephen Tainton