Being in leadership has its challenges. One that I have always struggled with is the judgment of other people.
Let me explain.
A parent, for example, is a leader. You have to make decisions for your family and lead them the best way you know how. When my children were teenagers I decided on a curfew time for them and … they judged me. “My friends parents let them stay out 2 hours later than that! You don’t trust me. What kind of parent are you?”
My rational brain tells me that my kid is lying – other parents don’t let their teenagers stay out that late; I do trust my child – it’s the creeps out there I don’t trust; and I am a good parent.
That’s my rational brain.
My self-condemning brain says, “You don’t really know what you’re doing, you’re just winging it and you aught to rethink your decisions.”
When other people make judgments about my leadership I struggle with that self-condemning brain of mine. I know that there are people out there who just don’t care what others think about them. I’m not one of those people and I suspect most of us are not. We are social creatures who want to be accepted by our pack.
I believe that a good leader:
- Listens carefully to the opinions of others.
- Sincerely considers those opinions.
- Makes suitable changes if those opinions prove good and reliable.
Once I’ve done all the above and someone still judges me, it hurts. But, it helps me to:
- Not dwell on the criticism or judgment. I force myself to become distracted by something else. Dwelling on the criticism serves no purpose.
- Not allow that self-condemning brain of mine to speak louder than the facts.
- Remind myself that I made every effort to make the best decision I could with the information I had at hand.
- Remember that others are entitled to their opinions. So am I.
Question: How do you respond when others judge you? Click here to comment.