I don’t know what it is about the human condition that makes us love to be in everyone else’s business. It’s a tempting and addictive pastime. Walk into any family dinner or social gathering and I guarantee at least one conversation involving the words “should” or “shouldn’t” as it pertains to someone else.
Whether it’s judging relationship dynamics, parenting styles, outfits/hair, careers, activities of choice, or social media updates, it’s so much easier to be up in others’ business than to fix what is buggin’ in our own.
I am not immune to mentally running other people’s lives on their behalf, either. I catch myself all the time in my personal life. (So as to not confuse personal with my professional, life coaching is not about giving other people advice; it’s about helping them find their own answers and remaining completely neutral and unattached to the outcome. It’s a judgment free zone.)
When my judgy-meter is dinging, it’s always my signal to pull out a Judge Your Neighbor Worksheet and do The Work. Why? Because my judgment and “should”-ing means I’m avoiding dealing with my own junk.
So if you find yourself telling other people (either in your head or out loud) how they should be handling or doing anything, I invite you to follow these 5 simple steps:
- Ask yourself: Whose business am I in? My business, their business, or God’s business. (Hint: If you want someone else to be doing something different than they are, that’s their business — even if it affects you, it’s still their business. If you want circumstances out of anyone’s control to be different than they are, that’s God’s business.)
- Pull out a Judge Your Neighbor Worksheet. I’ve provided a link so you can download one directly from Byron Katie’s website.
- Find the statement on that sheet that gets you the most riled up.
- Simplify it to the best of your ability. Think concise. (Example: John should be more responsible.)
- Self-facilitate or find an objective third party to walk you through The Work. I’ve provided a link so you can download this One Belief worksheet directly as well.
You know what? Inevitably by the end of this process, I couldn’t care less about the other person’s business I was in. Phew! What a relief! I have my hands full with running my own life, why would I want to be responsible for everyone else’s too? That’s just exhausting.
Let me know what you think of this process in the comments below! Or, if you have questions about it, feel free to ask and I’ll get back to you.