Communication: 5 sentences with which you unconsciously judge others

5 sentences with which you unconsciously judge others

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When friends turn to us with problems, we usually not only listen to them, but also say wise, comforting words. At least that’s what we think – because we ourselves feel better afterwards. But the other person can also feel even worse. The reason: With some typical “comfort phrases” we unconsciously judge others.

5 sentences with which you unconsciously judge others

“I know exactly how you feel …”

Is that really the case? No. Because feelings are never identical, but individual. And we can’t know exactly how the other person feels – because in most cases not all thoughts and emotions are shared, but only the most important ones. Instead of listening, this sentence quickly gets us into narrative mode about how it was for us. “It was just a phase!” If we try to comfort someone like that, they probably don’t feel like they are being taken seriously.

“At least you have …”

We often want to show the other person a ray of hope, to point out something that isn’t so bad. Of course it’s good to hold on to something positive – but for the other person, sentences that begin with “At least you have…” often sound like they shouldn’t be so fussy and that they should actually be grateful instead of angry, for example. Instead of being encouraged, they feel misunderstood.

“If I were you …”

It is meant to be well-intentioned advice. But when we tell the other person what we would do in their situation, we unconsciously judge their decision. We think it is not good, our way would be better. But we cannot decide what is best and most helpful for them. If we also use questions like “Shouldn’t you?” it can be understood as an accusation instead of help.

“You always do that!”

Or the other way around: “You never do that!” In both statements we are generalizing. It happens quickly, but in most cases it is also exaggerated. Does he or she really always do it? We often phrase it in a judgmental way, even if it is not true. But the other person can feel even worse, hopeless and sad. Not motivated like we wanted to achieve…

“Do it like …”

Why don’t you approach it like your colleague? Can’t you be like your brother anymore? Comparisons are a constant in everyday life – simply because we often compare ourselves. If others do the same, you quickly get the feeling that you are not good enough. Or that others are better and can do more. This is exactly what can be heard in the phrase “Do it like …”: I should be like her/him. Well-intentioned advice to orient yourself on your fellow human beings, but it can also quickly be understood as a negative assessment of your own personality.


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