My 6-year-old thinks his job is to be the boss of his four-year-old brothers. Even when I’m in the midst of disciplining them for something, he will try to take the role of parent.
Whenever this happens, I find myself telling him, “Let me handle your brothers. You worry about you.”
I get that we live in a world in which we should care about others and help others. But sometimes, I think we spend far too much energy worrying about what other people are doing (or what they’re not doing).
We pass judgments on the people in the line ahead of us in the store. We question their purchases and make snide comments if that person is on public assistance. We judge their food choices when we look at their waistlines.
We judge the appearance of people we encounter running errands. We mock their clothing choices, and critique the condition of their shoes.
We complain about a clerk with a less than stellar attitude. We are quick to report what we perceive as poor customer service before we have the whole story.
We berate ourselves for not having the perfect home after spending time on Pinterest.
We spend hours on sites like Facebook, using the updates we see as fodder for gossip. We judge the vacations our friends take and the things they spend their money on.
Well, I’m here to say, “You worry about you.”
You don’t always get the whole story just by looking at someone. You don’t know what challenges they’re facing. You don’t know the balance of their bank accounts. You don’t know what really happens when they are home alone.
You can only know yourself. And you can quiet your inner critic the next time it wants to judge someone.
You worry about you. You worry about your budget, your purchases, your clothes, your waistline. Put the energy you spend judging other people into improving yourself.
After all, you don’t want people making snap judgments about you.