Communication Issues

How to Deal with Judgmental People

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"How to Deal with Judgmental People"
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Judgmental people can be hard to deal with because they tap into self doubt and leave you standing in a cloud of negativity. Sharp and unfounded criticism from another person can make you feel insecure, frustrated and under-confident. You can cope positively with judgmental people though, if you remain centered and understand why they are being so judgmental in the first place.

How to stay well balanced

When criticism strikes take a few calm breaths and hang back before deciding whether to respond. Don't fall into the trap of launching into defensive mode, thus throwing your emotions out of kilter. If you need time to think repeat back to the judgmental person what they have said, raising your voice as you finish a sentence as if questioning the criticism.

This not only gives you time to think of a good response, but lets the judgmental person hear what they may have said in haste and without any real evidence to support their views. They may stutter an apology at such a point, and you won't need to think any further on the matter.

When someone judges you harshly imagine they are throwing you a verbal punch you have the ability to dodge. Make receiving the blow a personal choice, rather than instantly taking the criticism on the chin and letting it hurt you. Remember that you can't control what the other person says to you, but you can control whether you choose to take what they say on board or not.

You can easily unnerve a judgmental person by smiling sweetly, telling them you value their opinion, but don't agree with it this time. Judgmental people like to be in control. By giving this response to criticism you don't take away anything emotional from them leaving them defensive, but you don't give up any of your rights or composure either. You remain in control of your feelings while appearing confident.

Understanding judgmental people

If you understand a little about why people can be judgmental you can save yourself from becoming too entwined in their problems and separate yourself from their tirade. However if you assume that they are out to get you and trip you up, you will be left feeling wound up, angry and negative.

Judgmental people are usually perfectionists who are also highly critical of themselves. They tend to see themselves as deficient and look for problems, often where there aren't any to really be found. This can make them edgy, nervous and critical of other people around them. When they make a judgment you may hear them saying that you aren't good enough, but what they are really expressing is that they are not happy or satisfied within themselves. The problem belongs to them not you, so don't own it for them.

If you are still finding it difficult not to become upset by a judgmental person, even after practicing being centered, deep breathing and understanding where they are coming from, visualise them as a small child when-ever they judge you unfairly. You wouldn't find it hard to brush off indiscriminate remarks from a child who knows no better, and there is no reason to let a judgmental adult upset you either.

More about this author: Bridget Webber

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