Letting go of judgment. Have you recently stopped therapy? Perhaps you’ve just finished a program. Or maybe you’ve been coping well and don’t feel the need to continue. The reason doesn’t matter. What matters is how you approach life, now that you’ve completed therapy. In this “Coming Out of Therapy” series, we want to give you advice on how to live the best possible life with the skills you’ve learned. Let’s take the coping skills and self-awareness and apply them so you begin to thrive. Today, we are going to talk about the most crucial tool you have: Letting go of judgment.
Letting Go of Judgment
Judgment. It’s something we tend to do a lot of. And most of the time, we don’t intend to judge. We judge our peers, colleagues, and strangers. Not to mention their hair, shoes, clothing, and accessories. We judge the kind of houses we buy and the cars we drive. We judge others by the diets/lifestyles they partake in. Nothing is off-limits. Sports teams. Politics. Religions. Brands. It doesn’t matter. It’s getting judged.
Let Go of Judging Others
One of the keys to living a happier life is to let go of judgment. Part of that is by choosing to not judge others. And to meet them where they are in life. Often times we set our expectations too high for others. And they often fail to meet those (unachievable) standards you set. This results in your disappointment and frustrations.
Stop this cycle from happening in the first place. And try to start accepting others for who they are. Rather than who you want them to be. Try to keep in mind that everyone is simply trying to do the best they can with what they have. As cliché as it is, we all are truly fighting our own battles. You have no idea what someone else is going through.
The next time someone is rude to you, remind yourself they may be going through a hard time. And aren’t normally like that. For example, I like to try and be mindful of this when I’m driving. Sometimes I get cut off. Or I notice another care is quickly swerving in and out of highway lanes, rather dangerously. Instead of turning to anger, I think maybe they are speeding because something terrible has happened. And I know that’s normally not the case. But it helps me control my reaction – at least in a less negative way!
Let Go of Judging Yourself
The second part of this equation is letting go of judging yourself. And it’s definitely the tougher of the two. Life is really freaking hard. There are so many things to be worrying about. Life throws you unexpected obstacles and challenges. And they often feel as though they can’t be conquered or overcome.
You may want to fall back into old habits and thought patterns. And we want you to know right now that that is totally normal! And we don’t want you to feel any kind of a shame. Let those feelings and thoughts enter and leave your body. Be honest with them. And then be honest with your support group. They would much rather know that you are struggling now, they have to face the consequences of a full relapse later.
You have to make the conscious choice every single day to stop judging yourself. You are only human. Trial and error are inevitable. And perfection isn’t attainable. Remember all the positive work you are doing on yourself. And do your best to remember the good things. Celebrate the small victories. All of them.
Keep a Journal
One of the overlapping tips within this series is going to be about journaling. Journaling is such an effective tool. And you can use it for a number of reasons or scenarios. For this series, consider these two journaling strategies:
- Keep a mood tracker: Keep track of your moods each day. Try to be mindful of the event that changed your mood – for better or worse. By tracking, you can find patterns in things that change your mood. As you note these events, also make a note of what you did in the situation. That way you have proof of the times you made more positive coping choices and the times you struggled a little more.
- Write down effective coping methods: Not all coping methods are going to work for you. They just aren’t. So, when you find a coping method that works, write it down! Make sure to also note what the scenario was and how you were feeling. This way when something similar happens, you have an option that may work!
Call Us for Support
Another option is calling us. We know this may be a hard decision to make. But again, we want to say that there is no shame in needing a bit of extra support. Cristina Panaccione and Associates Counseling has two locations in the South Hills of Pittsburgh. We are currently accepting a limited number of new patients. So check out our videos to learn more about how we can help come out of therapy. Especially when it comes to letting go of judgment.
* This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Please contact a medical professional for advice.
Susan Rosemeier currently holds a Master‘s Degree in Professional Counseling from Liberty University and a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Science and Organizational Leadership from Trinity International University. Her background includes experience in case management, structural family therapy, individual & group therapy, and crisis counseling. She is a firm believer that the relationship between counselor and client is crucially important – and therefore strives to create a warm, caring environment in which to promote insight, healing, and growth.