Gabrielle Bernstein is a New York Times bestselling author, has been called a thought leader of the next generation by Oprah, hosts and sells out motivational lectures and has just released a new book, Judgement Detox. We caught up with her ahead of the book’s launch to discuss our tendency to veer towards judgement and how that’s impacting our lives.
Why do you think judgement has become such a default setting, both when dealing with ourselves and with others?
Judgment is an addiction response to deep-rooted trauma. The first trauma is the separation from love. From a spiritual perspective, choosing fear and separation over love dissociates us from our truth. We become fragmented in this state of separation and lose our connection to our inner being. In this disconnected state, we inadvertently turn our back on our inner being and become obsessed with an outward projection of who we think we are. Feelings of guilt and sadness wash over us because deep down we know we’ve turned our back on love. But we can’t fully understand our guilt, so we do whatever we can to avoid feeling it. This is how the cycle of judgment becomes an addictive pattern.
What effect can judgemental thoughts towards yourself and others have on your life?
Judgments will weaken your immune system, ruin personal relationships, and block your power to attract what you want into your life. The repetition of judgment makes it a habit. If you repeat a behavior over and over you strengthen your neural pathways. In time that behavior becomes second nature. The more you repeat the pattern of judgment the more you believe in it. The metaphysical teachers Abraham/Hicks say, “A belief is just a thought you keep thinking.” You create your reality with the thoughts you repeat and the beliefs that you align with. When judgment is your belief system, you’ll always feel unsafe, under attack and defensive. If you’re going to change the habit of judgment you need to change your core belief system. Our aim is to find our way back home — to find our way back to love.
Is it a huge amount of work to change your thinking and reprogramme your beliefs?
People may think that a spiritual practice is a lot of work but my response to that is that it’s a huge amount of work to live with judgment. The time you put in to heal your perceptions will save you a lifetime of misery
Is there one thing can people can do that would bring about change?
Practice the Judgment Detox! This six-step practice offers many promises. Petty resentments will disappear, compassion will replace attack, the energy of resistance will transform into freedom and you’ll feel more peace and happiness than you’ve ever known. I can testify to these results because I’ve lived them. I’ve never felt more freedom and joy than I have when writing and practicing these steps.
The Judgment Detox is an interactive six-step process that calls on spiritual principles from the text A Course in Miracles, Kundalini yoga, the Emotional Freedom Technique (aka Tapping), meditation, prayer and metaphysical teachings. I’ve demystified these principles to make them easy to commit to and apply in your daily life. Each lesson builds upon the next to support true healing. When you commit to following the process and become willing to let go, judgment, pain and suffering will begin to dissolve.
And the miracles will keep coming. Once you begin to feel better you start to release your resistance to love. When you’re in harmony with love you receive more of what you want. Your energy attracts its likeness. So when you shift your energy from defensive judgment to free-flowing love your life gets awesome. You’ll attract exactly what you need, your relationships will heal, your health will improve and you’ll feel safer and more secure. One loving thought at a time creates a miracle. Follow these steps to clear all blocks, spread more love and live a miraculous life.
What are some things you think are making people more judge-y in 2018?
Politics is at the top of the list. The 2016 election made division more present than ever before. Our divided political views are at an alltime high and the separation is felt throughout the world.
If you could encourage people to make one change to their daily lives to bring about real change what would it be?
Be kinder to others. When you practice random acts of kindness their entire life will change. When you are kind to others you get an oxytocin boost and you feel great about yourself. Kindness is contagious too! Your act of kindness will inspire someone else to be kinder too.
Do you think social media has fueled our obsession with judgement?
Yes! Social media has put a magnifying glass on our judgmental behavior. The constant chance to compare is at our fingertips daily. This is a big reason why I feel this book is so timely.
How do you get people to understand that a better life may not always be what they initially think?
I like to teach that obstacles are opportunities for growth. So even if you don’t think things are flowing the way you want you can always look for the miracles. You can choose to see the tough stuff as a chance to grow, learn and heal. This shift in perception makes it a lot easier to show up for difficult times.
Judgement Detox by Gabrielle Bernstein (published by Hay House UK) is available now. For more information visit gabbybernstein.com