Picking up where we left off at the end of part 1 of this article, focusing on the essential nature of love helped me more easily answer the eternal question in every situation: âIs this what unconditional self-love looks like, and if not, what would bring me closer to that intention?â Fear festers in dark and isolation. The moment you expose fear to examination in the light, you begin to dissipate its power. Nowhere is this more true than when fear shows up as its relentless ugly cousin, judging.
When I talk about judging or judgment, Iâm not referring to having good or bad discernment. Iâm talking about judging yourself, other people, and situations in dualistic terms such asÂ goodÂ orÂ bad,Â rightÂ orÂ wrong,Â okayÂ orÂ not okay. When we judge things by such simplistic, restrictive polarities, we limit our options, get stuck, and block ourselves from the highest good.
As human beings, many of us have a robust judging dialogue running in our heads much of the time: This is good for me. That would be bad for you. I was bad to do that. You were good to do that. You were bad to say no. I was good to say yes.
Weâre not talking about torturing ourselves over real danger or life-and-death situations here. Weâre talking about how much you spent on that blouse. Why you ate that second piece of pie at dinner. Why you tend to become impatient with your youngest child. Why you keep gaining weight. Why, no matter how hard you try, your mother-in-law can find the flaw in anything you do. Why despite his promise to do so, your husband never remembers to put the trash out on Wednesday nights. Judging is a prison of our own making.
We obsess until weâve turned something inconsequential into a huge, paralyzing, misery-making melodrama. The solution is quite simple: just say no. Next time your brother-in-law or the voice in your head wants to play the blame game with you, just say no!
Because whether itâs the voice in your head or the one coming from your older sister, you donât have to play any role. You can listen politely and say, âI appreciate you sharing that. Let me ponder it and get back to you.â Then go about your business. You do not have to engage in every potential disagreement youâre invited to.
One of the great miracles in life is how even a small change in your perception can dramatically expand your perspective. When a ship at sea changes course by just one degree, one hundred miles later it is in completely different waters than it would have been without that small modification in direction. Internal shifts are even more profound. It is downright miraculous how even a small change in your perception can dramatically expand your perspective. When we can neutralize the judge, we get unstuck, expand our possibilities, and increase our ability to grow and move forward.
Read part 3 of this article for additional insights into the role of love in recovering from burnout.
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About the Author
What’s love got to do with minimizing stress and getting unstuck? Everything, according to empowerment coach and inspirational speaker Deborah Jane Wells, author of Choose Your Energy: Change Your Life! During her 30 years as an organization transformation consultant, Deborah served as a senior partner in four of the world’s largest, most prestigious global professional services firms. In 2005, she took a five-year sabbatical to find healing and peace because non-stop work had taken its toll. Her recovery from burnout, including a sustained 80-pound weight loss and freedom from 10 years of debilitating depression, led to finding her purpose guiding others on their journeys. Through healing and self-exploration, she discovered that loving yourself unconditionally is the key to transforming your personal life, your work, and the world. Deborahâs books, blog, radio show, and signature coaching programs help individuals and organizations harness that same transformative power of love to turn unexplored possibilities into fulfilling realities and step into their greatness. Learn more at Deborah Wells Website.