The Problem of Underestimating Value

For many years I’ve been making an effort to really see people, to see past my judgments and assessments, and to show reverence for every individual, yet I still manage to undervalue people. When I take time to intently listen to peoples’ stories or to do thorough research into the lives that have influenced me, I am always astounded.

The last half of this TEDTALK was a needed reminder…

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By the way, this holds true even for the people we have rejected or shunned, for those who have hurt or offended us, and for the many we completely ignore.

4 thoughts on “The Problem of Underestimating Value

  1. Great post Pam! Everyone has something to teach! As you say, we should not be prejudiced and undervalue people.

    On a slightly different topic, in actuality, “judging/measuring” to protect ourselves is necessary e.g. we won’t want to let a drunk person drive us home etc. It is unfounded and un-required prejudice (like what you rightly pointed out) that we need to deal with. Too many people are using the word “judge” as a misnomer, such that in non judgement of highly anti-social behaviour like extreme selfishness etc becomes more tolerable culturally.

  2. Great point. I would use the word “discerning” or “assessing” the situation to distinguish that skill from judgmental behaviors. The quote “where you are is not who you are” might apply here. I can assess that a person is intoxicated and discern that this person shouldn’t drive me home or I can label them as a drunk, disgusting, or unworthy.

    • Discerning and assessing is good, Pam. For clarification though, the definitions from Oxford dictionary are, Judgement as “the ability to make considered decisions or come to sensible conclusions” quite opposed to the misnomer. Judgemental,implies excess and error, “Having or displaying an overly critical point of view:” So Judgemental is excessive, prejudice is bad, but judgement done well is reasonable.

      Frankly, I won’t normally bother about the difference, except that people are using “Non judgement/non discernment/” as a seductive argument for extreme selfishness and other highly anti-social traits, confusing many. So a clarification is necessary: discernment/good judgment is great, prejudice is not. (written a piece on this previously and is scheduled this friday clarifying the judgement misnomer) Really sorry to pontificate.on your post, Pam. My sincere apologies.

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