A lot of people (both kids and adults) suffer at the judgmental hands of others. They put themselves out there and try hard to be the best they can be, only to be shunned, mocked, made fun of, and in extreme cases, bullied.
It can freeze you right in your tracks.
You begin to second-guess yourself. Your confidence fades. You feel bad about who you are, and what your sharing with the world.
You feel like retreating into a hole.
“Maybe I’m a terrible person (or artist, painter, student, girl, singer) after all,” you say to yourself.
And then, the worst thing that could possibly happen, happens.
You quit. You quit trying. You quit being who you are. You think of how to fit in, or how to stay away from the world.
And in some cases, you plain just give up all together.
However, here’s the thing: There are going to be people in this world that don’t like you, for no other reason than “you’re not them.”
They won’t like you because of how you look. Or how you dress.
How you smile or don’t smile.
They’ll hate you for your voice. Or what you painted. Wrote. Sang. Created.
They’ll sneer at you and criticize you for your talent. Or lack of talent. For your education or lack of education.
For how much money you have. Or don’t have. Where you live. What you like. Or don’t like.
The list is endless.
See, people that need to judge and criticize others have one thing in common: in order to feel better about themselves, they need to knock others that aren’t like them down.
By being different than them, you become a threat to their existence. You become a target.
See, if you’re different, then what they are can’t be “right” in their minds. There’s no live and let live. There’s no embracing differences. There’s no room for two rights in their minds, because THEY must be RIGHT in order to FEEL GOOD ABOUT THEMSELVES.
So their answer is to attack you, or make fun of you. If you don’t like potatoes, and they do, then you become a freak or weirdo. “Who doesn’t like potatoes?” they scream to the world.
They do this to prove their view is RIGHT, and you are WRONG. It’s the only way they can feel validated about who they are. It’s the only way they get to feel special and superior. Because somewhere, deep down, some internal programming keeps whispering to them, “If you’re not right, if you’re not better, if you’re not smarter, brighter, more beautiful, more intelligent–whatever their trigger is–then you amount to nothing.” They can’t bare the thought of being nothing, so they strive to put others down and prove to that unheard voice inside them once and for all: I’m better. I’m right. I’m important.
Which is sad, really. The thing to realize about these types of people is that they are emotional vampires, running through the world, taking what’s special about others and calling it ugly–knocking people down–down so that THEY FEEL OKAY to be themselves.
If you tell them this, they’ll tell you you’re full of it, or crazy, or deluded.
Let’s be clear, though: they don’t realize they are doing it.
Their hurt is so deep, their coping mechanisms have been in place for so long, they are clueless to the possibility that their actions are cruel. They will stand by their actions and call themselves critical, discerning, better, right, cool, or whatever. It doesn’t matter.
And they’ll keep on functioning like this. They’ll gather those around them that validate and agree with them–these people are prizes to them because they support their special view of themselves. So they’ll rally their minions, and they’ll all agree with one another, creating a mean little clique that feeds off each other’s negativity and cruelty. They have to. It’s how they survive. And it’s how they will undoubtedly function throughout their lives, unless they do some serious soul searching.
But here’s the thing they won’t ever allow themselves to see: everyone is special.
Everyone is unique.
Every single being ever made is a perfect and unique mix that will never be duplicated, and that, in and of itself, makes everyone as unique as a snowflake. And have you ever seen an ugly snowflake? Of course not! All snowflakes are beautiful. (Even the judgmental ones are beautiful behind all that pain and lashing out.)
So, here’s the trick.
When someone’s putting you down, when they mock you, scoff at your ideas, tear you apart–understand it’s because they are simply trying to make themselves better. That old saying, “don’t take it personally” applies.
It’s NOT personal.
It’s NOT about you!
A judgmental person says more about themselves than they do about you. Whenever you see a negative, judgmental, person, they’re waving a flag over their head that says, “My pain is so deep that I need to hurt you and make fun of you in order to feel better about myself!”
Sometimes, regardless of knowing thier subconcious motivations, it’s still hard to take. You’re doing your best. You’re being who you are. You’re simply expressing the specialness of who you were born to be.
But, instead of focusing on them (which is what they want – if you acknowledge them, you make them feel even more superior! and bare your neck to their human emotional vampirism.)
Just ignore them and be you.
Bring your best to the world.
I know, this is easier said than done, but surround yourself with positive and supportive people who accept, and love you for who you are. Find support groups of like-minded people with similar goals who are positive, caring and supportive. They are out there, even if you haven’t found them yet. After all, you exist, right? And chances are, there are more positive and supportive people around, but you have to look past the negative ones in order to see them.
The scoffers, the mockers, the judgmental ones? They’ll find someone else to make fun of–because it simply doesn’t matter if it’s you or someone else they tear down–if you move away, they’ll find another target and continue their behavior until they discover it doesn’t serve them any more–but you?
You have better things to do with your life than pay attention to mean, negative, or judgmental people.
You were born as a unique snowflake. You’re like no other person on this planet. And it’s up to you to put your best self forward: sing, create, write, program, love, share, save, care, paint–simply said: express the absolute uniqueness of your own perfection.
And whenever someone judges you, or makes fun of you–remember–judgment is THEIR PAIN. Understand that their judgments are about themselves. Not you. Feel compassion for them and their negative focus on life (for this is truly a sad state of existence that leads to more unhappiness), then move forward with your own perfection and be the person you’re meant to be.
NOTE: if bullying becomes physical or life threatening, PLEASE find help and support. This article is meant for those who are not in threat of physical harm. If you are being physically threatened in any way – seek help from authorities, family members, qualified counselors, or friends you trust. Violence is NOT OKAY.
Click on the following link to find hotlines for bullying and domestic violence (among others): CLICK HERE