In my mind, judgment is underrated. There are many smart people who may fail to make good decisions so we cannot underestimate the value of common sense. In fact, it may be more important than getting good grades, being in the top of your class, at the highest level of your career or even social circle. Sometimes it’s the very basic decisions we make day in and day out that determine our success versus textbook lessons.
Good judgment can propel you into greatness if you really listen to your instincts. On the other hand, poor judgment can be your demise if your perception fails you. We all have a moral compass that guides us. Ultimately, it’s trusting ourselves to know what feels right, what does not and acting on those instincts even when others may not agree. We often ignore the signs we get because we feel pressured to go down a certain path, are filled with obligation, dismiss our true feelings, or even yet have a gut reaction to something and cannot explain why. It’s how we channel these gifts that can help set us apart.
Judgment guides me every day to choose right from wrong, try to do and see good and keep an eye on my priorities. And yes, my judgment has also failed me, but I have used those opportunities to reflect and grow. No one person can ever get everything right. While judgment cannot easily be taught, it can be learned by watching and listening to people who are admired and respected. In fact, a lot can be gained from pure observation.
I had many opportunities over the years to watch really good (and really bad people). You can learn from both, but I always choose to focus on the good. Growing up, we did not have much money and experienced many hardships, but my parents were never bitter or resentful about the cards they were dealt. They chose to find joy in everything they experienced and made the best of every struggle and situation. What a gift it is to live life that way. Their judgment allowed them to know that things could be worse and that they were very lucky in many ways. They always made wise choices with their limited resources, surrounded themselves with people who cared for them and appreciated the simple things in life. They made a judgment call on what they put value on. By watching from their example, I learned so much.
I was chatting with a friend about our kids and she commented that my daughter had great judgment, which I thought was an interesting observation as I never thought about her ability to make choices at this very young age. It took it as a huge compliment and wondered how she may have developed it. Perhaps it is because she only seeks out good. She does not have a mean bone in her body, is full of life and love and chooses to experience life with full gratitude. She is happy because she makes good decisions and she makes good decisions because she is happy. Could it be as simple as that?
Maybe judgment cannot be taught, maybe the clarity and ability to make the right calls simply comes from happiness and joy. If we live in a grateful space, we become clearer and it’s much easier to sift through the noise. When we make decisions from a place of love, it invites good things and leads us down the right path. Judgment is complicated, but we can try to simplify it. If we trust ourselves more, we may realize the answers are all there.
Try it out. Make a decision in anger and haste or make a decision with joy and clarity. I believe that your judgment will serve you best when you lead with love and sincerity. It’s a powerful. It’s transformative. It’s possible.
You be the judge.