Secret to connecting and effective Relationships—Review and reflect on this approach

No time for Judgments–they limit our view of others potential for growth.

” It is one of those simple  but beautiful paradoxes of life: When a person feels they are being judged or evaluated they resist personal change and become defensive. When a person feels truly accepted by another, then they are freed to look more truthfully at the effects of their words and behavior on others. As they become more open they can move from defensiveness and being stuck to thinking about how and in what ways they want to change in order to grow so that they might become more of what they are capable of being.”
― Mark W. Hardwick , Ph.D.

In almost every phase of our lives – at home, at school, at work – we find ourselves under the rewards and punishments of external judgments. “That’s good;” “that’s bad;” “that’s wonderful work;” “that’s stupid and a failure;” “that’s good coaching;” “that’s poor coaching.” Such judgments are a part of an attack on our self-efficacy and worth that goes on daily from infancy to old age. I don’t believe that judgments and evaluations provide any social purpose or usefulness to institutions and organizations such as the military, legislative bodies, schools or business organizations. Just think about the effectiveness of war in bringing about an end to conflicts etc.

Like everyone else, I find myself all too often making such judgments and in my experience, they do not make for effective relationships, reduction of interpersonal conflicts, or  increase in opportunities for personal growth, and therefore I do not believe that they are a part of  healthy, constructive or meaningful way to live your life. Curiously enough, a positive evaluation is as threatening in the long run as a negative one, since to inform someone that they are good implies that you also have the right to tell them about their short-comings or weaknesses. So I have come to feel that the more I can keep a relationship free of judgment and evaluation, the more this will provide more space for the other person to discover that to change or grow lies within themselves. They have the power to make choices and be responsible for how they are going to live their life.  The meaning and value of what to do in different situations in the last analysis is something which is up to them. My role becomes more supportive and helpful the more I move away from advice giving or judgment. I have learned that no amount of pressure or external rewards can persuade someone to do something they are not committed to do.  So I should like to work toward developing relationships in which I am not evaluating or judging other people’s choices or behavior. This I believe can set people free to discover their strengths and be a self-responsible person.

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