Monday, July 7, 2014

The 30-Day No Judgment, No Criticism, No Complaining Challenge

Today is my DAY 1 of the 30-Day No Judgment, Criticism or Complaints Challenge that was talked about yesterday at the Center for Spiritual Living in West Orange, NJ. Not many folks made it the full 30 days and I can see how difficult this can be, depending on your lifestyle, commute, relationship situation and whether you plan to spend the next 30 days on vacation on a remote island with a caterer.

The idea is that we give away so much of our time and energy to being critical, either toward others or ourselves and then complaining about others behavior that it’s not surprising we have little energy for our own dreams and passions. In other words, we are shackled by our own intolerance of life. We are prisoners of our criticism of this imperfect life, refusing to accept life on life’s terms, refusing to be tolerant of other’s behaviors. But it is a choice. I choose to be critical. I choose to be quick to anger at traffic and highway injustice (Been cut off recently? Watched someone texting while driving?).

For me, the next 30 days is not about being harsh with myself because I may be judgmental and critical. It’s about being observant to my behavior and acknowledging when I am less than tolerant of myself or others and then seeing where I can let go and accept life as it is.

Easy? Maybe not. I believe I am wired to criticize and judge. Aren’t we all? No. Actually, we’re not. Children don’t judge or criticize until they learn to from their parents, which means we are taught to be intolerant and complain if we don’t like what’s happening to us. In that case, I can stop the way I think and change my thinking so that I’m not giving my energy away.

Traffic is. People will behave out of their beliefs. Rain happens. People are not us; they are themselves and sometimes we don’t understand why they do what they do. They are living as they believe it’s best for them, whether that means they’re selfish, loving, short to anger or at peace with life. Why give our energy to these people and events, when truth is, they don’t care and may not be aware of how their actions are affecting us?

I’m going to make this a great experiment and in the days that follow, I will see how well I do to be less judgmental, less critical and less complaining. If I find myself more at peace with more energy for what I dream, then it’s been a success. If I don’t last more than a few days, then it’s a few days less of giving my energy away and I can start over the next day. I expect more than one “Day 1” to occur!

Wanna give it a try? Be kind to yourself and have fun.

No judgment. No criticism. No complaints. Only love.

Thank you Spirit for the peace and tolerance to accept people as they are and life as it is.

Gary . . .